Tag Archives: football

Gender Matters: My Son Won’t Play with “Girl Toys”


“Will doesn’t care about Elsa from Frozen. He’s a boy and that’s girl stuff.”

That’s what a dad said to his daughter in front of my 5-year-old son recently. My son who, just a few days earlier, excitedly danced in his seat while watching Frozen in a movie theater accompanied by — gasp! — me. His dad. Yup, that’s right. A father and son trip to see an animated Disney musical about sisters, relationships, love, and sacrifice.

You know, total chick stuff.

Since this is someone we encounter on a fairly regular basis, I suppressed the dad blogger rage and accompanying vehement diatribe on gender equality that was desperately attempting to escape from my mouth. But I saw the confused (and slightly ashamed) look on my son’s face and it broke my heart, so I knew I had to say something.

“Actually, Will and I saw Frozen and we absolutely loved it. That movie is great and it’s for boys just as much as girls,” I said, choking down my anger. “Right buddy?”

But after hearing it labeled a “girl movie” and therefore unacceptable, all Will would offer at that point was a tepid “Well, it was OK.” Just OK. Three days ago it had been deemed “AWESOME!!!!!!”

And then it was my heart that broke.

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The Patriots with Another Miracle Finish Against the Browns

Pat_Patriot_LogoIf it seems like I’m beginning to collect a library of unbelievable memories this season, it’s because I am.

First the Patriots pulled off a miraculous comeback win against the New Orleans Saints (my phone was dead so the video is someone else’s). Then they overcame a 24-0 deficit to beat Peyton Manning and the Broncos. And last night, I hit the trifecta as I was present for yet ANOTHER miracle finish.

With just more than two minutes to go in the game, the Patriots were trailing the Cleveland Browns by 12 points. And although the Patriots have pulled horseshoes out of their asses twice already this season, some fans just never learn because a bunch of people began to head for the exits.

Screw those morons.

Tom Brady led the Patriots down the field and scored a touchdown with a little more than a minute, and after the 2-point conversion it was a 5-point game. Thanks to a personal foul penalty on the touchdown, the Patriots ensuing onside kick was moved up 15 yards. But still, all the Browns had to do was recover it and the game would be over. Here’s what happened (NSFW due to my nervous swearing).

But even then, the Patriots had to go 40 yards in less than a minute with no timeouts. No easy task for sure, but this is Tom Brady we’re talking about.

After a couple of plays and an admittedly ticky-tack pass interference call in the end zone (hey, the Patriots were due for a call to go their way after getting robbed in the Jets and Panthers games), the Patriots found themselves with 1st and goal at the 1. Just one yard away from perhaps their biggest miracle to date.

Here’s the result (again, NSFW because of swearing).

The Patriots lost their most important offensive player next to Tom Brady in Rob Gronkowski, and I still don’t expect them to do anything much in the playoffs. But with all their injuries this year, I’m really proud of this Patriots team. And regardless of what happens, we’ve some some unbelievably special games this season.

And the best part is when I look back on these videos I’ll see a familiar pattern. The Patriots win, I scream like a maniac, and I immediately turn the camera toward my dad — the screaming maniac who taught me how to be a screaming maniac and also to ALWAYS stay until the end.

I can’t wait until my boys are filming me going nuts at Gillette Stadium one day.

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Tom Brady & the Patriots Beat Peyton Manning & the Broncos in Miracle Fashion

gillette_panYes I was there. Yes I thought the Patriots were done after halftime. No I didn’t leave early.

The first half of that game was one of the worst I’ve ever seen. Three possessions, three fumbles. Ridley and Blount benched. Brady strip-sacked. Defense gives up more than 100 yards rushing before halftime. Nary a spark of life to be seen among anyone wearing a Patriots jersey.

Did I boo? You bet your ass I did. And they deserved it.

However, thousands of fans left. Because it was cold (and yes, it really was freezing with a wind chill of 6 degrees). Because it was late. Because it was ugly. I didn’t think the Patriots stood a chance at winning that game, but I stayed because that’s what you do as a fan. You can bitch, whine, complain, and boo to your heart’s content — but you stay at that fucking game and you watch your team.

Especially this season, as the Patriots are no strangers to miracle finishes.

Because if you stay — if you stick it out through the cold and the misery — sometimes you’re rewarded with a memory like this one.

(FYI — there’s some swearing. I really hate Peyton Manning)

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Q&A with Drew Brees: Fatherhood, Family & Football

breesI get a lot of PR pitches. I turn down a lot of PR pitches. But when one of them says “Would you be interested in an interview with New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees,” you sit up and pay attention.

After I made sure I wasn’t being Punk’d by one of my idiot friends, I quickly and eagerly agreed. I mean, this is Drew Brees. Super Bowl MVP Drew Brees. The guy who holds the single season passing record with 5,476 yards. And even though he’s not a member of my beloved New England Patriots, I like Drew on a personal level because he’s a notoriously devoted husband, father of three little boys, and genuinely nice guy by all accounts.

Heck, aside from his elite athletic prowess and the fact that he’s a millionaire star athlete, we’re practically the same person!

But seriously, I was so excited and honored to get this opportunity. Even though I worked as a journalist for a long time and interviewed some pretty big names, I still get a kick out of talking to celebrities. Especially when it’s someone like Drew, who combines my love of football and fatherhood. And with so much going on in the NFL right now (concussion issues, player safety, locker room bullying, etc) it was a perfect opportunity to get a peek behind the curtain.

This opportunity comes courtesy of Tide’s “Color Captains” program, in which 32 NFL players (one from each team) capture pictures of their team colors in celebration of fans and football throughout the season.

So without further ado, here’s my Q&A with star NFL quarterback Drew Brees (and there’s a distinct possibility I may have jabbed him about losing to the Patriots earlier this season).

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Joe Flacco Chooses Football Over Family

By Keith Allison/Creative Commons
By Keith Allison/Creative Commons

It’s not often football and fatherhood intersect (outside of cringing while Antonio Cromartie struggles to remember the names of his 184 children), but the two worlds collided yesterday when Baltimore Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco missed the birth of his second child in order to play a regular season game against the Cleveland Browns.

His wife, Dana, went into labor yesterday in New Jersey while Flacco was in Baltimore warming up for the Ravens’ home-opener. On one hand I totally get it. I’m a HUGE football fan and with only 16 regular season games a year, players are hard-pressed to miss even one game. Add to that Flacco signed a whopping $120 million contract after winning the Super Bowl, and yesterday marked the celebration of that feat and the raising of the banner in his home stadium. Dedication to your job, your teammates, and fans is a positive and I’m sure Flacco (and his wife) discussed this at length and clearly felt this was the right move. And that’s a personal decision that is strictly between them as a couple.

It’s also been said that because of Flacco’s unique status as an elite NFL quarterback, he can’t be compared to the rest of us schmucks. And let me be the first to admit Flacco would’ve been excoriated by many fans and media members if he had decided to skip the game. People would’ve been calling for his head, talking about his lack of dedication to his job, how he let his teammates down (especially if they ended up losing), etc.

I get it — Joe Flacco was stuck between a rock and a hard place. And while I detest everything about the Baltimore Ravens (hey, I’m a Patriots fan), I’m certainly not calling Flacco a bad father or a horrible person for choosing to play instead of being present at the delivery. It’s a personal choice and he made the choice to play. So be it.

But while I’m far from outraged, I am disappointed.

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