A few things came to mind while I watched the Giants beat the Patriots in a fairly entertaining Super Bowl. Last year, the Super Bowl attracted a record 111 million viewers. The NFL estimated that 100 million pounds of wings, 53.5 million pounds of avocado, 28 million pounds of chips, eight million pounds of popcorn, and most importantly, 325.5 million gallons of beer were consumed. The average Super Bowl watcher consumes 1200 calories, and there’s a 20 percent increase in anti-acid sales the Monday after the Super Bowl (www.NFL.com).

Football is considered, by most of the country, as America’s game and the ultimate symbol of American culture. The ascent of football as the most consumed form of American entertainment shows more about the lack of progress that civilization has made as a whole.

Watching gargantuan men crash into each at top speeds as intoxicated people cheer for them seems a tad primitive. Consider that, according to a report by the St. Petersburg Times, a player loses three years off his life expectancy for every season he plays in the NFL. In fact, the average American man lives to be 75, while an NFL player lives to be only 55 and plays only an average of four seasons. Of course, there’s no time to worry about that when your team constantly needs to replenish itself with new behemoths.

In addition to the sanctioned violence on the field, the NFL seems to take a low stance on the images they portray of women. Take for instance the ever-perky and smiling cheerleaders on the field who shake their pom-poms and other appendages as intoxicated males ogle and encourage the bouncing of their assets. If you can’t get enough from the women on the television, then there’s always the option of purchasing your significant other a thong with your favorite team’s logo at the NFL.com store (perhaps a Valentine’s Day gift – wink wink). Nothing says “I love you” like branding your girlfriends derriere with your favorite team’s logo.

The Super Bowl also wouldn’t be complete without a performance from the puzzlingly unaged Madonna. Watching her perform wasn’t necessarily bad as she included many current pop stars, but watching her dance around the stage in awkward and uncoordinated patterns was the strong reminder that she is undoubtedly 53.

Who can forget the commercials? The commercials can be broken down into 3 categories; hot half-naked pitch woman, devilishly cute talking animal,and token ridiculous moron. These three ideas are recycled and rehashed every year, but who doesn’t love a talking monkey in a business suit.

The word genius has already been watered down, but nothing has diluted it more than referring to the coaches as geniuses or mad scientists. A quick observation would reveal that coaching violent behavior and calling plays doesn’t make anybody a genius. Also, no player should ever be considered anybody’s hero for the sole reason that he’s big and can hurt other people.

Don’t get me wrong. I have watched every Super Bowl since I was a child. I’ve cheered for the violence, been mesmerized by the cheerleaders, laughed at the talking monkey, and worshipped the coaches and players. But maybe the Super Bowl shouldn’t be the crown jewel of American entertainment. However, thousands of years of human history have proven that this type of entertainment isn’t going away. So have a beer, relax, turn your mind off and enjoy the show.

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