Yes, the Super Bowl is here! That also means that the Super Bowl Ads are here, the Super Bowl halftime show is here, the extended Super Bowl pre-game and post-game shows are here and, thankfully, the Athletes in Action Super Bowl Breakfast is here. More on that in a minute.
Our Cultural National Holiday is on for Sunday, although–as with our last big holiday–economic nervousness is bringing a reductionist feel to it all. From “The Today Show” and “Good Morning America” to CNN and Fox News, just about every news outlet has featured stories about what NBC’s Bob Costas has called “the secondary market,” noting that parties are being cancelled, scalpers are reducing prices, and more people are “flying commercial or even driving in,” according to one resort owner.
I’ve only been to one Super Bowl (and loved it) but I really think the day is more fun–and potentially inspiring–in television-nation. And it’s less expensive. Here’s my list of the best ways to enjoy Super Sunday.
Enjoy the ads. This is one day where you’re better off chit-chatting during show and getting quiet for the commercials! The best of our nation’s creative forces are at work in creating Super Bowl ads, because at $100,000 a second, every moment counts! They’re often as excellent in their artistry as they are excellent in their content. This year will feature humor from Denny’s, warmth from Pedigree adoptions, hope from Careerbuilder.com, and more humor from Monster and Google. The Cola wars return, and we’ll see if Pepsi can return to their long-held dominance despite Coke’s victories in recent years. Conan O’Brien is doing his first commercial. There’s a 3D ad. The Clydesdales are back, but no GM or FedEx.
Ads that didn’t make it. Sites such as this one will let you view ads that were either scrapped or censored.
House of Worship. Even the CEOs (Christmas and Easter only) go to church on a holiday, and Super Bowl Day is becoming another one. Why not make that part of your day?! The sermon/homily/message will almost certainly contain Super Bowl references!
Halftime! The days of a college band performing while the crowd restocks on dogs and brew are long gone. This year, the show within the show features Bruce Springsteen and the E-street band. He’s used to going three hours live so someone’s gonna have to drag him off the stage!
The Super Bowl Breakfast. On Saturday morning before the Big Game, this Athletes in Action-sponsored event features inspiration and awards. This year’s speakers include Tony Dungy, Anthony Munoz, Brent Jones, Lee Roy Selman and more. Viewing info is at SuperBowlBreakfast.com.
The Post-Game Prayer. Cardinals’ QB Kurt Warner and many other headliners from both teams are Christ-centered in their faith and will gather at midfield to pray after the game. The networks often point their cameras away. I hope they’ll show it because it’s a wonderful model for the young–and the young at heart–to see authentic faith in action at the Super Bowl.
Oh yes, and in between all of that, there’ll be a game: Pittsburgh 31, Arizona 19.