WHY THE SUPER BOWL IS AN AMAZING AMERICAN INSTITUTION
BY THE TIME THE NFL IS DOWN TO TWO TEAMS, GREAT FRIENDS AND FOOD MATTER AS MUCH AS THE GAME FOR MOST OF US.
The Super Bowl has come a LONG way in 58 years. From the original National Football League Champion Green Bay Packers vs. the upstart American Football League’s Champion Kansas City Chiefs matchup at the Los Angeles Coliseum in January of 1967 to this year’s bigger-than-life weeks-long extravaganza at Allegiant Stadium in Las Vegas: times do change. The Coliseum cost just under a million dollars to build in 1921 dollars. Allegiant Stadium came along about a hundred years later and cost roughly 2,000 (not a typo) times as much.
Super Bowl Sunday has become the biggest watch party day and the second biggest eating holiday of the year. Who you invite to watch or who invites you to watch matters. You want a good crowd, but not an obnoxious one. You want people who will bring good food and not hog all the wings.
Where you watch matters too. Sports bars can be fun, but unless you’re in close proximity to the hometown of a team playing (Looking at you Overland Park! OK, and you Freemont...) the crowd is likely to be split. That can make or kill the vibe. The safer bet is a trusted group of friends whose allegiances are known before the invitations are made or accepted.
To that point, I fully realize I may lose some readers here but feel compelled to state that I am a born and raised Kansas City Chiefs Fan. These are the salad days, to quote Shakespeare—the best time in the history of the world to be a Kansas City Chiefs fan. As much as any fan base would, my family and I are enjoying the good times while they last.
After losing Super Bowl I, KC made it back three years later and beat the Vikings to win Super Bowl IV. Then, for fifty years, longer than Moses and the Children of Israel, the organization and its fans wandered in the wilderness. Management passed on Jim Kelly and Dan Marino in favor of Todd Blackledge in the 1983 draft. The Raiders and then the Broncos had their periods of dominance in the AFC West. Even the Chargers had a few good years with legitimate superstars on their roster.
Meanwhile, KC generally signed whatever QB the 49ers sent packing. 16 is a legend but arrived in the twilight of his career. The record was bad enough to get the number one pick in the 2013 draft, but that was a uniquely bad year for quarterback prospects and 11 was coming over from San Francisco, so the pick was used on Big Fish to protect the blind side. KC also selected a good Tight End that year. He’s still around and doing alright… Good things happened over the next few years and so there was some head-scratching when former number one overall pick and genuinely good guy Alex Smith was sent on his way. But as fans, we wanted to trust that Andy Reid and Brett Veach were putting the pieces together…
Were. They. Ever. Kansas City didn’t get the first QB taken in the 2017 draft. But the debate about whether they got the best in that class is over. The question now is whether the Chiefs got the best QB of ALL TIME by selecting 15 with the tenth pick. As a fan, I’m here for it all. The past six AFC Championship Games, now four out of five Super Bowl appearances with two dubs already in the bag, Arrowhead at 142.2 decibels, a sense of optimism and pride in Kansas City that includes red fountains, players who are now famous off the field as well as on. And yes, as a fan of her music and the father of two daughters who has found joy and strength in her example, I’m very much here for having Taylor Swift onboard as a fan. Speaking on behalf of Chiefs fans everywhere: Welcome Taylor! She is the best in the world at what she does, we love how she has embraced the Kingdom, and the respect is mutual.
None of the foregoing is meant to take away from the sensational story of the man who has proven he is absolutely NOT Mr. Irrelevant. His talent leading the 49ers, and the depth of talent on their roster, is undeniable. 13 is not a fluke. May he have the career he has proven he deserves and may the best team win on Super Bowl Sunday.
Back to the game and the event
We’re here for all of that too. Enjoy our Super Bowl Sale! Shameless pitch: use our stainless steel drinkware to keep your pops frosty for the whole game. Remember, halftime is going to be longer than normal and you need gear that will handle the long haul. If you’re packing snacks or drinks to another venue, our Backcountry Class coolers are the perfect container for conveyance. And if you’re tailgating anywhere, you want our Basecamp Class coolers carrying your meat (extra points if you’re getting takeout from Q39 or Joe’s) and chilling your beverages. Pace yourself. And take America’s Cooler with you when you go.