The Super Bowl Is Adult Spring Break: Part Two
Tuesday of Super Bowl adult spring break is when you really start to realize where you are. Monday's a bit disorienting, you're finding your way around -- oh, that's where Senor Frog's is! -- but by Tuesday you have a gameplan of sorts. You've seen what the schedule looks like -- okay, okay, the party at Pat O'Brien's is a must do on Thursday -- and we have to get the special wristbands for Friday night. Do you think your shady buddy who somehow can produce midget strippers and ecstasy pills in any city on earth, can hook us up?
Of course he can.
And if he can't then the girl who knows way too many guys -- and by knows, I'm using the strict Biblicly-speaking sense -- certainly can.
She can always get us hooked up.
1. Tuesday's big event at adult spring break is Super Bowl media day for both teams, which is basically the foam party of adult spring break.
Only without the alcohol or the foam. So imagine if you went to a foam party at spring break and there'd been no alcohol or foam.
That would have really sucked, right?
In fact, can you think of anything worse than standing around stone cold sober with a bunch of people, 90% of whom are male, at a spring break party?
Super Bowl media day is when both teams talk to the media with no intention of saying anything interesting and then occasionally -- rarely -- someone says something interesting and the media turns it into a huge story. For instance, last year San Francisco 49er Chris Culliver talked about not wanting gay people in his locker room. No one had any idea who Chris Culliver was, but the next thing you knew suddenly his opinion on gay people was everywhere.
It's really ridiculous, when you think about it -- why do we suddenly care what a football player thinks about gay people on the week of the Super Bowl? And by "thinks about gay people," I mean, "if he doesn't like gay people." Because if Chris Culliver had said he loved gay people then no one would have reacted at all. If Chris Culliver had announced he was gay at Super Bowl media day last year then he would have been honored as the greatest human being on earth. I'm not kidding about this, the media would have been a hot mess around him, he might have become Time Magazine's man of the year.
There would have been 1,498 columns about how brave he was.
And then one person would have written a column about how not brave Culliver was for making his sexuality a story DURING SUPER BOWL WEEK WHEN IT COULD BE A DISTRACTION FROM FOOTBALL and then that person would have been tar and feathered and everyone would have been fauxraged on the Internet and then 48 hours after that happened it would been like it had never happened at all. Fauxrage would have claimed another victim and the world would keep right on spinning.
Anyway, Culliver's mess was basically Duck Dynasty a year before Duck Dynasty happened. If you want my opinion on Duck Dynasty -- and really how could you not? -- here it is.
(FYI, I love gay people. Not as much as I love hot women with bisexual tendencies and low morals, but close. Then again, my political views have devolved to the point that I would support Fidel Castro or Vladimir Putin for US president if either man was willing to make online sports gambling legal. So what do I know?)
2. So I had two options, I could actually go to Super Bowl media days which required getting on a bus to New Jersey to spend the entire day at a non-alcoholic foam party-- where there would be thousands of people asking mostly disinteresting questions of people incentivized to be as disinteresting as possible -- or I could sleep in and put Super Bowl media days on television while I worked on a story about Google autofill.
Which do you think I picked?
I also had a couple of meetings scheduled in the late morning about Outkick's future. Suffice it to say, everything's rolling with Outkick. When they fire that bastard Clay Travis there's really going to be no stopping that site.
After those meetings I scanned Twitter to confirm that no one said anything at media days.
What a happy day for human rights!
In fact, and I'm not making this up, the top story from media days was that Marshawn Lynch didn't talk to the media for long enough.
The Constitution doesn't compel you to speak, but the NFL media does.
3. So I went to radio row to record interviews for 3HL and my NBC Saturday show.
Today, interestingly enough, the Fox crew calling the Super Bowl would be appearing for the media. Which put me in the interesting position of being a Fox employee asking Fox employees about the Super Bowl. (My life is basically one big ethical morass). Troy Aikman could show up with a chainsaw in the Super Bowl booth and saw off Joe Buck's head and I'd be like, "Nice production work cutting away from that chainsaw before the blood splatters got too noticeable."
This is actually a joke, I would totally Tweet that Joe Buck had it coming.
I kid, I kid.
These interviews were lovely.
While there I run into SI's Richard Deitsch who TREATS SPORTS VERY SERIOUSLY BECAUSE HE IS A JOURNALIST WHO MUST DETERMINE WHETHER PEOPLE ON SPORTS TV ARE GOOD AT TALKING ABOUT SPORTS ON TV. THIS IS SERIOUS JOURNALISTIC BUSINESS. ALSO, HE WILL NOT ALLOW WOMEN TO BE OBJECTIFIED UNLESS THEIR OBJECTIFICATION OCCURS BY HIS OWN MAGAZINE AND PAYS HIS SALARY.
I decide to be a nice guy and shake Deitsch's hand since we've never actually met and I think actual media feuds are hysterical. Deitsch isn't able to make eye contact with me, shrinks in a winter coat that is too large for him -- worn indoors at all times -- and waddles away after refusing to have his picture taken with me. Seriously, he refused to have his picture taken with me shaking his hand.
And here I tried to have Outkick's own Nixon to China moment.
You try and be a good guy and what happens, the big-time TV journalist critics of the world run away from you when you actually say hi.
I think it's clear at this point that Deitsch really hates me. Which is pretty outstanding, because I don't bear him any ill will at all.
But whatever, this is what passes for sports media drama.
So be it.
4. Next I interviewed the McCourty twins, Jason, who plays for the Tennessee Titans, and Devin, who plays for the New England Patriots.
Halfway through I forgot which one was which.
Come on, they're identical twins, even Mike Wallace would have screwed that up.
After that I left radio row and came back to my hotel room to do pantsless 3HL.
5. Then, after all this hard work, I took a nap.
It wasn't a good sign that on the second day of adult spring break I was already really tired at seven at night. After an hour I woke up, booked hotel rooms on our vacation for the wrong week -- why am I so stupid! --- and read the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, as all A-list media moguls do. Then just as I was thinking about sleeping for 12 straight hours Jacob Ullman, a Fox executive with the alcohol tolerance of an entire Navy cruiser, called to see if I was ready to hit an agent's party.
The agent's party was in a building located at 666 Fifth Avenue -- an address that would be considered inauspicious in a city not dedicated to the seven deadly sins -- and we went up to the Grand Havana cigar bar.
6. The Grand Havana's packed with sports celebrities smoking cigars and drinking alcohol.
But at first Jacob and I head to the wrong room for the party. And I'm pretty sure Samuel L. Jackson was in that room.
Later I tell Jacob that I think we almost accidentally went into Samuel L. Jackson's party and Jacob says, "I know, do you think I'm an idiot?" Which is why he's in his job and I'm in mine.
The first media person we see? Dan Patrick. Shortly thereafter come the Dannettes. (I think the Danettes, Paul Pabst, Seaton O'Connor, Andrew Perloff, and Todd Fritz set a party attendance record for media that had to be up early in the morning. I have no idea how they survived the week.)
The Grand Havana's on the top floor of 666 Fifth Avenue, the city views are majestic and it's the kind of place where I picture Russian oligarchs deciding whether or not to sponsor a coup or buy a nuclear weapon.
I don't have my first beer of the day until ten at night, but we make up for it.
From here it's like running through a media car wash, you say hi to everyone, keep moving along and meeting new people, and eventually, find yourself smoking your first cigar since your buddy's New Year's Eve 2005 party in Philadelphia when you smoked too many cigars, threw up at four in the morning, and then had a six in the morning flight back to the Virgin Islands and got passed through the entire security line because everyone thought you might die otherwise.
Not that something like that ever happened, but it's the kind of thing that could have happened.
And if it had been nine years since you smoked a cigar you might have needed help from Jill Savage of the Pac 12 Network to keep you from slicing off your finger. (She's pictured in the article above because while we were sitting at the bar Jacob broke out his brand new fancy watch that receives emails and also can take pictures. I keep calling it a Dick Tracy watch and Jacob keeps correcting me and calling it a James Bond watch).
7. The first rule of Super Bowl parties? No one talks about the Super Bowl.
In fact, a general rule of all Super Bowl spring break parties is that the only thing you are allowed to talk about is yourself and other spring break parties. Are you going to (party here)? Have you been to (party here)? Is (insert famous entertainer not related to football in any way) really going to be there? Did (insert famous person) really try to get tickets and get turned away? Also, sports media rumors.
All of these are fabulously entertaining conversations and they represent 99% of the media conversations at Super Bowl parties.
But, again, no one ever talks about the Super Bowl at Super Bowl parties.
Because everyone has already talked too much about the Super Bowl.
Really, here's the deal, no one cares who wins the Super Bowl. The Super Bowl is just an excuse to get drunk and party, the cinco de mayo of the celebration.
As the party ends, we persuade Bonnie Bernstein to head back to the Essex House bar and help us close down that bar too.
Outside, it's just beginning to snow.
There's still a bit of uncertainty about the weather.
Could the Super Bowl really have snow?
8. Having left the Super Bowl party, we discuss the Super Bowl weather, which is an exception to the general rule about discussing the Super Bowl.
Bonnie's fun to hang with and you can check out her latest venture here, she's now a VP of campus insiders, which has an impressive website and investor list.
The bar closes, and everyone heads home.
But first Jacob has to email me the contact number for the PR person running Jay Glazer's Wednesday night party.
They're going to add me to the list.
Day two of adult spring break is in the books.