Thursday, February 04, 2010
I don't know how much credence I put into a Wii game. I'm also hearing conflicting predictions about the point spread and such. So much for predictions, huh? This was interesting, though, so I am passing it on.
Madden NFL popped into headlines today, predicting a sunny Super Bowl win for the New Orleans Saints, and eight months of winter for the Indianapolis Colts.
Every year, Electronic Arts runs a Super Bowl simulation within their video game, Madden NFL. And five out of the last six years, the game's results have predicted the Super Bowl winner correctly. The simulation's only miss was the Giants' Super Bowl XLII victory over the Patriots, and even Nostradamus couldn't have seen that one coming.
This year, Madden NFL predicts a close Saints victory, with a final score of 35 - 31 over the Colts. According to the game, Drew Brees will be named the MVP after passing for 299 yards and three touchdowns. Reggie Bush will account for two more touchdowns, one rushing, and one on a punt return.
Tuesday, February 02, 2010
LOL Bet you expected a psych-out and to see something about the Saints anyhow, huh?! Ahhhh, you know me well. I can't get TOO predictable. Right?!!
Actually, my friend Wullie sent this to me and I was so impressed by it that I had to share it with you. It's the scenes this fellow built to display his model cars. They sure do look like the real deal until you see him place the cars into the scenes. Wow, very impressive! Enjoy!!
Monday, February 01, 2010
Okay, I know by now you are SO sick of me. lol Can you tell what's on my mind? What's on the mind of every New Orleanian, every Saints fan? We can think of little else!! My buddy, Newmoon (stop by and greet her if you haven't met her!), shared this in the N'awlins Saints Fans Team and I borrowed it from her to share it with you. (Newmoon, I promise to give it back when they're done with it. *giggle*) Now those of you who know me know that I am not a drinker, so if revelers referencing beer offend you, click that little X in the top, right-hand corner now. If you can get past the beer thing, I think you'll get a very cool glimpse into the heart of my fellow Yats. As we say way down yonder in New Orleans: Laissez les bons temps rouler, or let the good times roll!!
The Saints are coming. And so are we, their loyal, long-suffering and slightly discombobulated Super Bowl-bound fans.
While there's still time to prepare -- although a few hard-core Who Dats will begin trickling in Monday, most of us won't arrive until Thursday or Friday -- we thought we'd give you a heads-up about what you should expect.
First things first: You need more beer.
Yeah, we know. You ordered extra. You think you have more than any group of humans could possibly consume in one week. Trust us. You don't.
New Orleans was a drinking town long before the Saints drove us to drink. But it turns out beer tastes better when you're winning. (Who knew?) So let's just say we're thirsty for more than a championship; adjust your stockpiles accordingly.
And look. When we ask you for a go-cup, be nice to us. We don't even know what "open container law" means. Is that anything like "last call"?
It's Carnival season in New Orleans (that's Mardi Gras to you), and we'll be taking the celebration on the road. So don't be startled if you walk past us and we throw stuff at you; that's just our way of saying hello.
Oh, and sorry in advance about those beads we leave dangling from your palm trees. We just can't help ourselves.
February is also crawfish season, and you can be sure that more than one enterprising tailgater will figure out a way to transport a couple sacks of live mudbugs and a boiling pot to Miami.
When the dude in the 'Who Dat' T-shirt asks if you want to suck da head and pinch da tail, resist the urge to punch him. He's not propositioning you. He's inviting you to dinner.
And if you see a big Cajun guy who looks exactly like an old Saints quarterback walking around town in a dress ... don't ask. It's a long story.
We know that crowd control is a major concern for any Super Bowl host city. Our advice? Put away the riot gear.
Reason No. 1: Indianapolis is going to lose, and their fans are way too dull to start a riot.
Reason No. 2: New Orleans showed the world on Sunday that we know how to throw a victory party. We don't burn cars. We dance on them.
Reason No. 3: Even if we did lose, which we won't, leaving the stadium would be like leaving a funeral, and our typical response to that is to have a parade.
Speaking of which: If you happen to see a brass band roll by, followed by a line of folks waving their handkerchiefs, you're not supposed to just stand there and watch. As our own Irma Thomas would say, get your backfield in motion.
And hey, Mister DJ! Yes, we know you've already played that stupid Ying Yang Twins song 10 times tonight, but indulge us just one more time.
To us, "Halftime (Stand Up and Get Crunk)" isn't just a song; it's 576 points of good memories. It's the sound of a Drew Brees touchdown pass to Devery Henderson, a Pierre Thomas dive for first down on 4th-and-1, a Garrett Hartley field goal sailing through the uprights in overtime.
It's what a championship sounds like. You may get sick of hearing it. We won't. Encore, dammit.
Inside Sun Life Stadium, you may find your ears ringing more than usual. We're louder than other fans. Seven thousand of ours sound like 70,000 of theirs.
Don't believe us? Ask the 12th man in the Vikings huddle.
Some people think it's just the Dome that heightens our volume. But you're about to discover a little secret: We can scream loud enough to make your head explode, indoors or out.
It's not the roof. It's the heart.
Well, OK, and the beer.
Don't be surprised if there are more Saints fans outside the stadium than inside. A lot of us are coming just to say we were part of history, even if we can't witness it up close. The Saints are family to us, and you know how it is with family: We want to be there for them, whether they really need us or not. Because we know our presence will mean something to them, whether they can see us or not.
Come to think of it, seeing as how you're taking us in for the week, we pretty much regard you as family, too. So we're warning you now: If you're within hugging distance, you're fair game.
Hugging strangers is a proud Who Dat tradition, right up there with crying when we win.
Most sports fans cry when their teams lose. Not us. We've been losing gracefully and with good humor for 43 years. Tragedy and disappointment don't faze us. It's success that makes us go to pieces.
Hurricane Katrina? We got that under control. The Saints in the Super Bowl? SOMEBODY CALL A PARAMEDIC!!!
So anyway, don't let the tears of joy freak you out. We're just ... disoriented.
OK. Let's review:
Order more beer. Throw me something, mister. Suck da heads. Wear da dress. Stand up. Get crunk. Hug it out. Protect your eardrums. Pass the Kleenex. Hoist the trophy.
See you at the victory party.
The Who Dat Nation
**Written by Mark Lorando, The Times-Picayune**
Saturday, January 30, 2010
I guess this could be called an addendum to yesterday's blog. It says what I was trying to express SO well. This lady definitely GETS it!
(Are you sick of me with all the Saints stuff, yet? I hope not!! lol)
Where floodwaters once stood, a tide of emotion rises in New Orleans
By Sally Jenkins
Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, January 25, 2010; D01
It was a contact drunk. You didn't have to swallow a drop for this NFC championship game to make you feel totally inebriated, like you'd been swilling the cheap well whiskey of Bourbon Street all night. When the action finally ceased, after nearly four hours, the wrenching swings and lead changes, dramatic spirals and swoons left you staggering amid the great geysers of horn music and confetti. The New Orleans Saints, dragging a whole metropolis on their backs, had advanced to the Super Bowl, but only in overtime after one man, Brett Favre, tried to take down the entire city.
The Superdome crowd of 71,276 was incoherent with madness; it was the loudest noise ever, a hurricane in your head. But when you thought it couldn't get any louder, it went up another notch, into a great shrill stratosphere as Garrett Hartley stepped up to a 40-yard field goal with 10 minutes 15 seconds left in overtime. Behind the uprights was a large fleur-de-lis emblazoned on an upper deck of the Superdome, that storm-ravaged facility. Saints Coach Sean Payton told Hartley, "Why don't you just hit that fleur-de-lis dead center?" Hartley did exactly that, sailed the ball through the uprights toward that ornate emblem of a team and a city, to give them the 31-28 victory over the Minnesota Vikings and the greatest moment in franchise history.
Make no mistake: They won for love of their city. They won for all the neighborhoods where the benighted old mansions now peel and sag, like old ladies who have misapplied their makeup. For all the buskers and panhandlers and street dancers, working under shabby, old oaks and palms. They won for the poor, flooded districts where the horns lament on street corners, Do you know what it means to miss New Orleans, I miss it both night and day.
Had a town ever craved a victory more than New Orleans? All across the city, people who had lost everything needed so desperately to win something. Even the cops on street corners chanted, "WHO DAT?" The local paper, the Times-Picayune, threw away all dispassion and ran a banner headline Sunday morning: "Our Team. Our Town. Our Time." One Saints fan outside the Superdome even stamped a fleur-de-lis on the side of his great Dane. Party wagons with Klaxons barreled down the boulevards, imbibers hanging from the windows.
"Four years ago there were holes in this roof," Payton said. "The fans in this region and this city deserve this."
This time, the wreckage on the field and in the streets was sweet, beads and feathers and streamers, as opposed to the flotsam and detritus of the flood. The references were inescapable, and the Saints didn't shy from them. All season, they had announced they were playing for something much larger than themselves. "It's a calling," quarterback Drew Brees said. After all, their home stadium had been the last refuge in the city for 30,000 residents during Hurricane Katrina, and an earthly version of hell during the storm-flood afterwards, strewn with debris and with breaches in the roof. The damage was so heavy, and so emblematic of New Orleans's sense of trauma and abandonment, that city officials nearly decided to tear it down.
Instead it underwent a $200 million renovation, and when the Saints returned to it in 2006, they did so with a new head coach in Payton, and a quarterback the rest of the league had given up on in the sore-shouldered Brees. The renovated dome was a charmless edifice, all gray cinder block, but it was filled with the ghosts of Katrina, and the men who played inside the building never once flinched from the responsibility of that. On the contrary, they took specific, enormous pride in it. "Ninety percent of people who come up to me on the street don't say, 'Great game,' " Brees said back in 2006, when he first got to town. "They say, 'Thank you for being part of the city.' "
Brees and Payton became the guys who came to New Orleans when no one else would. They arrived when the city was still destroyed and there was still junk in the streets. When Payton moved to the city, it was nearly empty, and the franchise was so lacking in facilities it had to hold training camp in Jackson, Miss. "There was a lot of traffic going the other direction, not much going in," Payton recalled. Businesses were so shuttered that at one point, he had to stand in line for two hours at a Walgreen's drug store to get an antibiotic for his daughter, and could only get half the prescription filled. "In other words, it was different," he said. "It was hard to explain if you weren't here."
Brees was looking for a new team after the San Diego Chargers had no use for him. He committed to a city still partly underwater. "There were still boats in living rooms and trucks flipped upside down on top of houses," he said earlier this week. "Some houses just off the foundation and totally gone. You just say, 'Man, what happened here? It looks like a nuclear bomb went off.' For me, I looked at that as an opportunity. An opportunity to be part of the rebuilding process.. How many people get that opportunity in their life to be a part of something like that?"
One of these days, football will just be football again in New Orleans, but on this night, it was much more. Everything seemed to have outsize meaning, from the stakes to the noise. Then, as if the game needed anything more, the 40-year-old Favre delivered a living-legend performance.
Time and again, Favre choked off the crowd and the momentum as he directed scoring drives downfield. He struck at the Saints repeatedly, like a rattlesnake, as he threw for 310 yards with an assortment of lasers and fades while enduring a succession of shuddering blows. Gimpy and grizzled, he just kept slinging it downfield. In the final minute of regulation he threatened to bring the entire building down as he drove the Vikings once more, this time to the Saints 38. Finally, with 19 seconds left in regulation, Favre made a fatal mistake. Facing third down and 15 yards to go, he rolled right, then whirled and threw back to his left toward Sidney Rice -- but right into the hands of cornerback Tracy Porter. That effectively sent the game into overtime.
After all that, it came down to a coin toss.. That was the break the Saints needed to close the deal. Favre would never return to the field; overtime belonged to the Saints, who won the toss, then got a blazing 40-yard kick return from Pierre Thomas. From there, the Saints inched their way into field goal position. Hartley took aim at that fleur-de-lis and sent the ball up, and the sound came down from the upper reaches of the Superdome like a landslide.
"It's surreal," Brees said. "Coming here four years ago, post-Katrina. . . . It's unbelievable, it's unbelievable. You can draw so many parallels between our team and our city. In reality we've had to lean on each other in order to survive. The city is on its way to recovery. We've used the strength and resilience of our fans to go out and play with confidence on Sundays. It's been one step at a time, and we've had to play through plenty of adversity. Just like this town has."
Friday, January 29, 2010
It won't surprise any of you that I'm a lifelong Saints fan. Well, since I was seven anyhow. I love that so many of you have rallied around our team and are pulling for us, despite the fact that we are six point underdogs. In some cases (sssshhhh, we won't say who! lol), BECAUSE of the fact that we are the underdogs. It's very difficult for me to tell you what's happening here in the hearts of native New Orleanians and those from The Great Elsewhere who love the Saints, in the heart of the city itself (yes, it has one, a big, beautiful heart). It's like my battered and bruised city socking destruction in the eye in this post-Katrina new reality. It's a lot like me standing up and deciding to be a winner even at this late stage in my life, against all odds.
My sister-in-law, Sandy, send this video to me today. It really expresses what I keep trying to explain to people. It says it SO well, when I could not. This thing is about SO much more than football. I hope you will understand just what this means to those of us who call southeast Louisiana home and can share some of these wonderful, powerful emotions with us.
By the way, the fellow you see in the cemetery, Chris Rose, is my very favorite newspaper columnist. He GETS it. Always. I love that man and his writing. If you have time and are so inclined, check out his editorials at www.nola.com .
Thanks for indulging me a moment of pride, of hope, of celebration, and of more than just a little nail-biting, tummy-butterfly-fluttering jitters over our team going to the Super Bowl. BLESS YOU BOYS!!!
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