It turns out that there is a cure for that nasty little depression that usually settles over your head right after the holidays. You know how it goes. You have all of that happiness, manufactured or not, and activity between the end of October and the end of December. Those last three months of the year always seem to fly by so quickly. You have parties to prepare for. You have to make travel plans. You have to buy gifts. You get drunk. You stagger home. You take time off from work and work has actual time scheduled to be off. It’s great and then January comes and there’s nothing.
Seriously, the human race needs to come up with some kind of additional holiday between January and April. Even when April comes, and with it Easter, it isn’t really the same as those other holidays. In my family Easter was not a big deal. We didn’t get gifts on Easter. You generally don’t even get day off for Easter. Getting worked up about a giant rabbit hiding hard-boiled eggs just wasn’t the same as anxiously awaiting presents and a fat man in a red suit.
So, really, there isn’t much to look forward to until the next October. I guess some people look forward to Memorial Day and Independence Day and maybe Labor Day but they aren’t real holidays. At least you get a day off for Independence Day, though, which is nice. Really, when it comes to holidays Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years really have the monopoly on things.
So, there is that kind of funk that falls over people when January comes around. It almost can’t be helped. Then, I watched football this weekend and, suddenly, I discovered that there was a cure. There is a way to beat that depression and funk and feel really good about the remainder of the winter. So, without further ado, here is my cure.
Step One: Get yourself and NFL franchise. Now, this will likely involve billions of dollars. Technically step one would be the acquisition of billions upon billions of dollars. It would also help to build some kind of facility for this team to play in. I would suggest spending those billions on some sort of stadium. If you have tremendous persuasive powers you might be able to convince the NFL that your team can play at a local college or high school field until the billions for the stadium can be built.
I know what you are saying. Sure, it may be very difficult for the NFL to consider putting an NFL franchise in ever town and city in the country. I never said this was an easy plan. Of course considering how difficult it will be to raise the billions of dollars by the time you have done that your particular town may be as big as a city and convincing the NFL might be much easier. If need be, co-opt a much larger city in relative proximity to the town you happen to live in.
Do whatever you need to do just get a franchise. Bribe and borrow and steal and perhaps grant sexual favors you may not even like but all of it will be worth it in the end.
Step Two: Get yourself some players. This too will take and accumulation of billions of dollars. To get the truly good players you need to offer them multi-million dollar contracts. I suggest you go the George Steinbrenner route and gather as much money as you can and use it to buy any and every player who is any good. Before you know it the Bemidji Bobcats will have the best quarterback, running-backs, defensive players, coaches and kickers the world has ever seen.
Step Three: If you have not already sold tickets I would suggest selling some. You need to recoup those losses from the billions of dollars you have spent on acquiring a team, building a stadium and getting all of the best players and coaches. I suggest you build a stadium that has about eight hundred luxury boxes and about twelve regular seats. A lot of teams make most of their money by renting out these luxury suites to the point that most stadiums really look like some kind of reversed aquariums or something.
Step Four: Now your team needs to play really well. This may be the most difficult part and it may not always work out the way you think. The Chicago Bears played a very up and down season. At times they played brilliantly like the last team that won it all. At other times Rex Grossman looked as lost as a child in a department store who has lost his mommy. You half-expected to see him on the sidelines holding Lovie Smith’s hand with a thumb in his mouth hand snot running down his nose. Still, they have managed to end up at this late point in the season still playing. The key, then, is to keep winning enough key games to eventually get to Step Five.
Step Five: Win the divisions until you make it to the Super Bowl. This should be done shortly after the first of the year, right around playoff time. You will soon find yourself so overjoyed and happy that the depression of the upcoming Valentines Day won’t even bother you. If you are lucky enough to have a spouse who enjoys football then you might even be lucky enough to have a spouse who forgets all about Valentines Day as well.
That’s really all you need to do. I have to tell you, from personal experience, it really does make all of the doldrums of work and gray skies and cold wind disappear. The weatherman may be predicting eighteen feet of snow will fall in one giant lump and cover your entire city and you fill find you do not care. Newscasters will start wearing your team’s jerseys and joking with each other on television.
Of course, the only thing that could make this better would be to take weasely, annoying, shrimpy, make-up-wearing, smirking, know-it-all, talentless newspaper sports columnists who constantly predict doom and gloom and losses for your home town team and run them out of town nude but covered with tar and feathers. If this particular sports columnist happens to work for the Chicago Sun-Times, well, all the better. Of course, you should try not to let the fact that the smirking dwarf is now walking around acting like he predicted the team would win all along or using the term “we” as if the entire city agreed with his miserable doom and gloom predictions all along.
Now, granted, you can’t have everything. Those meteors never fall out of the sky and hit the people you want them to when you ask them to, do they? No, you should really just be glad your team is in the Super Bowl. Just having that, and only that, can really make a lot of other annoying things seem a whole lot more positive and easier to live with.