Tuesday, March 04, 2008

End of two Eras

Wow. Third post of the day. This is weird.
When I was a teenager I desperately wanted to play Dungeons and Dragons. I never seemed to know the right people at the right time, though. Most of my friends had no interest in the game, and the people I knew who did have interest had played it years ago and gotten bored with it.

So for years I've billed myself as such a geek that I couldn't find geeks willing to play D&D with me.

That's neither here nor there, I guess. But I saw today that Gary Gygax died.

Gary Gygax co-created Dungeons and Dragons. Pretty good run for a geek. Geeks unite!

On the other end of the spectrum: Brett Favre retired from the NFL today.

When Favre started playing for the Packers in the early '90s I was a die-hard Vikings fan. I was beyond rational. While watching games I'd scream, pound on furniture, curse, and throw things. If the Vikings lost I'd get worse. Through those years it was easy to hate the Packers--stupid Wisconsinite fans, pack of cheeseheads. They drink paint thinner before games, you know. Because they're stupid. And from Wisconsin. Which is stupid.

So it was easy to hate the Packers, but it was hard to hate Favre. Even when he almost singlehandedly beat the Vikings, as he did on more than one occasion, the way he played inspired at least admiration. Tough, modest, and unpredictable--if he'd been a Viking I might have worshipped him. Unfortunately, the Vikings have been doomed to a series of barely-competent quarterbacks going back at least as far as Two-Martini Tommy Kramer.

Then in the late nineties I lost all interest in professional football. And Favre kept playing. He's older than me, you know. Maybe the last NFL quarterback who is. And now he's retiring. And that's depressing. Because he kind of embodies football in the way that my boy Kevin Garnett embodies basketball. And because guys my age shouldn't be retiring yet.

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