A Violent Femme’s View – Catharsis in Minneapolis
I told a lie a few weeks ago. I posted a response to Chris at Ol Bag of Donuts about the last game with the Vikings that I didn’t hate Favre anymore.
One time in a blog thread, I told Aaron Nagler of CheeseheadTV that I hated Favre like an ex-husband. Nagler seems to be more of a hates him like he’s a brother type (the Prodigal, perhaps?) and someday when he returns to the fold all will be forgiven.
Tarynfor12, I hear you that we’re past him and he shouldn’t be a frequent topic of conversation. (We do sure seem to talk about him a lot, don’t we? Some habits die hard.)
But permit me just one last burst of verbiage on the subject.
It seems to me there’s something about a Packer fan in their late 30′s early 40′s that is different when it comes to this last game and how we feel about Favre. At least there is for me.
For one thing, he’s close to my age, and until this year was still playing very good football. I am two years and 345 days older than Brett Favre. There really aren’t any players my age in the NFL anymore, and that’s an odd feeling he first time it hits you.
Like him, I am from a family of rednecks (Western, rather than Southern, but they’re not that different) who tell it like it is, sometimes when you don’t want them to. I grew up in a small town where everyone knew your business and the starting QB was considered the best thing since sliced bread. My older son is a few years younger than Brittany, my younger son almost exactly the same age as Breleigh. I held him close to my heart in more than one way – age, background, life history and FOREMOST? Packers. How magical was it that he had come to the perfect place for him, Green Bay, and led the way to the Super Bowl we’d never given up on even though everyone else in the NFL had?
I knew I’d never meet him, barring a miracle. Certainly he had a different life than I would ever know. But isn’t what bound him to me was the similarities, not the differences? I had a happy marriage, a good career, good kids and a somewhat complicated life with a redneck family. And a love for the Packers and their fans. Ditto, right?
Wrong. As we have found out on almost every level the last two years, dead wrong. On all counts. Well, not the complicated life part, apparently.
The first Vikings win this year was a triumph. I felt joy for Ted Thompson, Mike McCarthy and Aaron Rodgers – most of all Aaron Rodgers. For the team, the path was laid clear for the rest of the year. We are in a pattern now of winning and being able to win even the close games. Play your hearts out. Monkey off back.
This game was a catharsis, for me anyway. I had already moved on, but now I can let go. Brett can’t hurt my feelings anymore. I’m at peace with the fact that he (and and pretty much any male my age) is too old to play football.
I’m probably projecting my own emotions on to Favre and Rodgers, as well as McCarthy but a few things struck me about this win.
• Mike McCarthy’s post game speech. “You could see all week this was coming!” That’s a coach’s job, to motivate, but there seemed a bit extra animation to MM in that locker room. He wanted this sweep badly, and not only because it is a division rival. He had an axe to grind with both Favre and Childress. That axe is now firmly planted between the Vikings’ shoulder blades.
• If you watch carefully at the end of the clip, while the Packers are gathering when Charles Woodson is getting ready to speak (about :55 in), Aaron Rodgers looks at him with an expression of pure joy and a great smile. (Then too, of course, there’s the picture Anita referred to earlier – that smacked of “How’s that workin’ out for ya, Gramps?” It’s now the wallpaper on my computer.)
• Favre’s demeanor on the sidelines and in his presser. The weight of the pressures he’s faced this year on and off the field and the growing recognition of what he has done to his legacy in Green Bay seemed to weigh heavily on his shoulders. The shambles his life has seemingly become can’t be fixed by all the ESPN fawning in this world. It may not even be fixable by Brett Favre…
Life is pretty good, and the Packers are very good. And if we beat that pathetic excuse for a football team, the Chicago Bears, both life and the Packers will be great.
There. Until Brett apologizes, whether directly or indirectly, I’m done talking about it. At least in my blog posts. I can call him Brett again. I really don’t hate him anymore (I don’t like him anymore, either). I think that’s a good thing.
Thank you, Packer players, for understanding not only how important this was to the management and to QB 1, but to all of us as well.
On to Atlanta!