It has become sort of a tradition on Twitter, when something amazing happens in the world of bats and balls and sweaty people, for myself and others to simply Tweet, “Sports, man. Sports.”
Because sometimes there just is no explanation. No rhyme or reason, no cogent analysis of why something completely improbable happened. Just that it did, and it brought such joy and anguish, and I’m going to stop waxing poetic now and just show you this:
The New Orleans Saints led the Minnesota Vikings 24-23 with 10 seconds to go Sunday in Minnesota. The Vikings had blown a 17-point lead and were about to lose, yet again, in excruciating fashion in the playoffs. And then, with the stadium cathedral-quiet, this happened…
Or, viewed another way, from the vantage point of the field at U.S. Bank Stadium, THIS happened (Warning: the crowd noise gets insanely loud a few seconds in, so watch yourself)
The Minnesota Vikings won a remarkable, improbable football game Sunday night, thanks to some really poor defense by the Saints, and some sort of miracle magic from above (Kirby Puckett and Prince cooked up something fierce).
I was driving in the car listening on radio when it happened, both little boys sleeping in the back seat, my wonderful wife indulging me listening to a game in which she knew I cared about neither team, and when the play occurred I think I yelped four octaves above my normal range, and probably swerved into the right lane of the Long Island Expressway.
Crazy, crazy game. Now Minnesota plays Philadelphia, two pretty tortured franchises, each playing a quarterback nobody ever expected to see on the field this year, certainly not in an NFC Championship game. Should be fantastic.
Some other thoughts from a pretty freaking fabulous NFL playoff weekend:
— Jacksonville? Jacksonville! Big congrats to any team that can put up 45 points on the road when Blake Bortles is the quarterback. That was one hell of a win in Steelers-ville, 45-42. Do I give the Jaguars any chance to beat New England next week? Yeah, they have a chance. It would take a pretty major miracle, but may I remind you what happened at the end of the Vikings/Saints game?
— Not pretty, that Eagles win over Atlanta Saturday. But I know a lot of Eagles fans and they don’t care how ugly any win is, nor should they. Their star QB Carson Wentz is out, and Nick Foles played pretty damn well, and the Atlanta Falcons did what the Falcons do in most postseasons with Matt Ryan as their QB, and that’s underwhelm. Atlanta absolutely could’ve and maybe should’ve won that game, but as usual, fell a bit short.
— Hilarious to think of the four remaining starting quarterbacks in the playoffs. Hmmm, let’s see, which one of these is not like the other: Bortles. Keenum. Foles … Tom Brady.
— Every time the Steelers lose in the playoffs I see a lot of screaming from their fans about how bad a coach Mike Tomlin is. And I always say the same thing: Please, let him come coach the Jets. We’ll suffer through these 12-win seasons and constant playoff appearances. SMH.
**Next up, today is of course Martin Luther King Jr. Day, so I hope you all take a few minutes and listen to this incredible piece of American oratory, from August 28, 1963.
Every time I listen to it, I still get a few chills. What an amazing man.
**And finally today, this ought to leave you feeling warm and fuzzy and hopeful about the future. There was a fairly serious emergency panic in Hawaii on Saturday, due to an accidental emergency missile attack alert being sent out from the state government’s alert system. From The Washington Post, here’s how it happened:
Shortly after 8 a.m. local time Saturday morning, an employee at the Hawaii Emergency Management Agency settled in at the start of his shift. Among his duties that day was to initiate an internal test of the emergency missile warning system: essentially, to practice sending an emergency alert to the public without actually sending it to the public.
Around 8:05 a.m., the Hawaii emergency employee initiated the internal test, according to a timeline released by the state. From a drop-down menu on a computer program, he saw two options: “Test missile alert” and “Missile alert.” He was supposed to choose the former; as much of the world now knows, he chose the latter, an initiation of a real-life missile alert.
A drop-down menu? Seriously? Who among us, and I’m completely serious, hasn’t accidentally clicked the wrong thing on a drop down menu?
Hey here’s a tip to all governments, everywhere: Put the “test” button option and the “Missile alert” option on separate buttons. Separate screens, or hell, how about separate computers!
Hugs and kisses,