Super Bowl Sunday. The Super Bowl, a football story by former football player and current American writer Dewey Edward Chester. Enjoy your day, Yareah friends.
THE SUPER BOWL, a football story.
Inside my locker room, I sat down heavily on a bench. I undressed, closed my eyes, but pictures of violence flashed through my mind. Rubber pads squeezed soft flesh; metal cleats scratched cement pavement. When the game began, there’d be no time to think—-no time to guess.
My teammate screamed—–“Kill the Bitch!” and I opened my eyes to see Billy Blake, a player who was ready to go. He was short, had muscles extending from his skull to his shoulder. Against New York he swept left end and knocked their best man senseless. Billy Blake was lethal.
I turned to watch the rest of my team—–Earl Walker and Eric Crabtree moved nervously about the room; only MacArthur remained calm. Within the hour he would transform into a very fast cat. Mac would make a difference in the game.
Montgomery sat in a corner crunching gum. He was a full-blooded Indian from Purdue University. Monty was lean, with high cheekbones. His black eyes held no expression. Monty had played in great games—–“It’s never intense with me,” he explained, “I relax, walk up to the line of scrimmage…..and do it!”
Fletcher was over there, standing on his head. As our Center, he always thought carefully about things. He was a pugnacious Notre Dame guy, with absolutely no fear.
Once in a while he made mistakes, but that was expected. The moment before the ball was snapped, I always heard Fletcher cry out—–“Switch! Switch!” Adjustments were necessary in the trenches; the game flashed by so fast; only eyes were seen down there.
Stubb, from Duke University, was standing in the doorway; valiant Stubb took risks. But when the game was on the line, Stubb was the best of all.
He sat in a corner and began his low, rumbling growl.
I was keyed up, too! I had to throw a football—–just turn it loose and hit a perfect spot. Three seconds is all I had; three lousy seconds.
Slowly, we marched up the stadium’s dark tunnel to the field. I was nervous, listening to scrapping cleats, battle helmets gleamed before me—–a crack of daylight from an open door—–the crowd’s roar increasing louder and louder—–to a fever pitch; black satin jerseys, flashing white shoes, blurred in rhythmic motion.
My coach took a puff from his pipe. His teeth clamped down. His veins swelled. “Get ready, son,” he told me, “You’ve rehearsed it all before. Come stand near me. Remember what I’ve said. Do you feel brave today?”
“As fearless fire,” I spoke confidently.
“My boy,” the coach confessed, “It was on a day like this when I played my last game….. “Thirty years ago it was, my son.
“Here boy, brush my gray hair aside and see if I look old…so very old? Bowed bones beneath this pile of time. I was once a Quarterback, like you. The bitter mockery of age; stand close and let me whisper in your ear:
“What is the meaning of Soul, my boy? Unless, by God, fate is in your hand. Go out and get the job done!”
The game began shoulder to shoulder, gut to gut. We flung our Souls at opposition: “Hit them where they’re soft!” were Coach’s words, “In the knees, boys; come in low and strike a rising blow.”
The game heaved and swelled…tumultuous mountains of flesh. And I was in it all, spilling blood in front of the world.
Engaged in combat, a dream enveloped me: Oh, swelling waves of grass. Oh, endless Soul; in you, Life! In you, Immortality. But advance comes oh so slow. Through boyhood’s naïve faith, at last old age, where doubt exists; and disbelief; then we trace around again, all over again….until Eternity!
When does Life end? Are dreams a piece of dead men’s Souls?
It was deep in the game; I was tired, pushed to exhaustion. My teammates were fighting among themselves.
I kneeled inside our huddle and looked at them: Fletcher’s nose was gashed to the bone; blood ran down his face. The rest were battered and bruised—–frightened of a bitter foe. Shadows had covered the field.
“Quiet, men,” I said, then pointed out the facts: “We’re fighting against ourselves. That’s what they want.”
Blood was dripping from my mouth. I had to think fast. We were losing the game, and ultimately our Souls—–the clock was running out.
I lined my men up, and threw a perfect pass to Mac, who caught my ball at the forty. MacArthur was amazing—–he made the catch without breaking stride.
“All right!” I encouraged, “Green Pitch, Wing T-pull.” I bootlegged the ball through daylight, then cruised to another first down.
I gathered my men: “All right, here we go!” I looked at Nik, “Can you go?” I asked.
“Yeah, I’m fine,” Nik lied. He was writhing in pain.
“All right. All right….here we go! Red right freeze!”
The defensive man moved up close; but gazelle-like MacArthur sliced through the secondary.
“Sunavabitch!” the defensive man screamed out, realizing he’d been beat.
Over his shoulder, Mac caught my ball, and bulled his way to the one.
“Yeah! Yeah!” I cried out.
Monty leaned inside our huddle and told us all a secret.
“Okay,” I reasoned, “We’ll do it!”
I studied Nik carefully, then said—–“I need you again, can you go?”
Nik smiled; he would always do the job. I growled: “Twenty-six Drive to win this gawdamn game!”
I crouched under Fletcher and looked the defense in the eye. I blurted—– “Here we come, you sunavabitch!” I swirled and placed the football in Nik’s outstretched hands.
“Bam! Bam! Bam!” Mac, Walker and Monty destroyed opposition, and right after them, came Nik—–thundering through a gaping hole, to win the Super Bowl.