Idol Chatter

I have to be honest and tell you that I woke up yesterday morning, not even realizing that it was Super Bowl Sunday. I’m visiting friends in Vermont, and a long time girlfriend and I made plans for a lovely, long dinner at one of our favorite restaurants while Daddy stayed home with the toddler–from whom I learned that football was on the menu while Mommy and I were out. (Huh? So now 3-year-olds know more about what’s going on America, event-wise, than I do.)
Well, after catching part of Bruce Springsteen during the halftime show, and all the screaming waves of fans, I was reminded about why I usually follow the big sports events: they are remarkable shows of community, community I often think of as sacred (especially if it’s baseball).

Then this morning I came upon this thought-provoking article, “Super Bowl Sunday, American Holy Day,” by Gary Laderman, who claims this annual football is “as American as guns and apple pie” and in this same vein, calls it “a ceremonial ritual as religious as any one might find in the monotheistic traditions. Super Bowl XLIII, pitting the Pittsburgh Steelers against the Arizona Cardinals, may only be a game but, as with most sacred matters, the stakes are of ultimate importance, with the material and spiritual investments likewise incalculable.” Laderman goes on to discuss the relationship between play and religious life, and my favorite of all, understanding these giant arena games as “miniature Gardens of Eden.”
It’s an interesting article. Laderman does not shy away from past scandals either (including the infamous Janet Jackson-Justine Timberlake half-time fumble).
Bruce Springsteen at

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