Is Super Bowl Sunday A Super Duper Distraction?

My SuperBowl XXV Ticket Stub

by Lawrence A. Robinson
I loved professional football. I loved the NFL and I would watch it as much a possible. I would watch football all day on Sunday. I would watch Monday night football, and Thursday NFL specials. When football was not on TV, I would watch the talking heads talk about football.

I loved NFL football so much that every year while watching the Super Bowl game as the 4th quarter started, my feeling of depression would also start setting in because I knew that soon, it would all be over for the next six months or so. (Summer football and arena football didn't do it for me.)

I loved football and football season. I still have the VHS tape of the first Black Super Bowl

Quarterback, Doug Williams of Washington, whipping up on John Elway of the Broncos in Super Bowl XXII.

Obviously, it is easy to understand the overall love of the game when during football Sundays, the pastor would always start his sermon by saying, 'Don't worry, I'll have you out in time to see the game.' NFL football had taken control of Sunday over the top of church.

Just think about that for a second. Hmmm...

Me and the some of the guys from my job would visit each others home on football Sundays and watch the games. Sometimes we would rent a suite at the Sheraton in Altamonte Springs if our wives said, 'No, not today.' Sometimes we would even drive over to Tampa to watch the Buccaneers play in Tampa Stadium.

I worked for a computer retail store named Creative Computer over on E. Colonial Drive. What a fun place to work. We did lots of exciting things together, from going fishing on the Butler Chain of Lakes at midnight to a Scuba Diving vacation in Cozumel, Mexico. I loved that company and those people.

We were so very excited to hear that Apple Computer created a contest that they named, 'The Apple Bowl.' The premise of the contest was to sell as many Apple Products as possible, and the top Apple Computer salespeople in the state would have an expense paid Super Bowl XXV weekend. There would be 15 first place winners going to the game. There would also be second place winners for lesser prizes of crystal or something but, who wanted crystal when you could go to the SUPER BOWL?

Our store and salespeople were very excited as was retail computer store salespeople all across Florida. There would eventually be over 700 salespeople vying for 15 first place slots.

Sales is war.

It would be great to go to the Super Bowl with the guys from our store, but competition was really tough. We got weekly updates from Apple about the standings.

A week before Super Bowl XXV we receive the final tally from Apple Corp. Over 700 sales people participated, 15 first place winners. I was number 14. WOW, Lucky 14.

It would be more fun if someone from the store was going with me. Just so happens, Apple rules did not allow transfer of tickets. Winners would receive their ticket at the gate. Two females won and was not interested in going and could not transfer tickets to friends, so Apple Computer picked the next two people on the list. My good friend in the store, Eric Colon was number 17 and was moved up to the top 15 winners.

What a grand time we would have.

Super Bowl XXV was a game between the American Football Conference (AFC) champion Buffalo Bills and the National Football Conference (NFC) champion New York Giants to decide the National Football League (NFL) champion for the 1990 season. The Giants defeated the Bills by the score of 20–19, winning their second Super Bowl. It is the only Super Bowl decided by one point.

On January 27, 1991–10 days into the Persian Gulf War—Whitney Houston took the field at Tampa Stadium and performed "The Star Spangled Banner", backed by the Florida Orchestra along with music director Jahja Ling, before 73,813 fans, 115 million viewers in the United States and a worldwide television audience of 750 million. And, I was there. If you look closely, you could see me and Eric behind the guy in the Orange Stripped jacket.

Was I obsessed with Football? No. I didn't memorize the statistics, I didn't study the play book and I only knew the formations after the announcer said what they were. I loved the game but I did not allow it to consume my life.

That's my story and I'm sticking to it.

But still, the time spent on NFL and other fun but nonproductive activities started to worry on my mind. Especially after Super Bowl XXV. There was nothing left for me to achieve in the annals of the NFL. There would never be another high like that one for me.

I was ranked #14 of over 700 total salespeople. I was in the stadium and watched Whitney Houston's live performance of what is said to be the best National Anthem at a Super Bowl. Because of the Gulf War situation, this marked the first time the Super Bowl would be telecast in most countries around the world.

Did I mentioned that I was there?

It wasn't a cold turkey type of breakup with NFL football and me. It actually took several years. I now view the NFL and television as a distraction for the most part and have selected programs that I watch with moderation. And yes, I will watch the Super Bowl this year. I watched it last year with my daughter. In the last ten years, I may have watched a total of 10 total games.

I have learned that too often distractions could keep you away from real things. Recognizing distractions is tough. What is distracting you from life? So I ask again, Is Super Bowl Sunday a Super Duper Distraction?