Thursday, September 8, 2011
NFL ACLB PREVIEWS - #2: GREEN BAY PACKERS
PERTINENT DATA: 10-6 last year, earning an NFC wild card berth, won at the Eagles in wild card round, won at the Falcons in the divisional round, and won at the Bears in the NFC Championship, culminating in beating the Steelers in Super Bowl XLV, which I watched from a hospital emergency room while high on morphine; 7 to 1 odds to win Super Bowl XLVI.
BEST CASE SCENARIO (Raven): Friends, even though it was not too long ago that I felt this way about Aaron Rodgers, after what he did to my youngest sister, the past year has changed my tune entirely. In fact, the past year has changed a lot of things. I quit drinking late last year, completely, coming from a long line of alcoholics (my mother is actually passed out drunk in the next room right now... no fibbing), and not wanting to perpetuate that in my own life. Unfortunately, my body apparently was used to the alcohol intake so it rebelled against me and I had an exploded interior that had to be surgically operated upon the end of January. Of course, me being a person who has never gone to the doctor, and doesn't trust them, and is a practicing metascientist of the highest order, with a herbalist ol' lady who keeps my mind right with wild lettuce tinctures and yarrow spray to defend against governmental wi-fi attacks on my freedom mentality, I did not do well after surgery (or they planted something in me), which caused massive surgical infections and muscle abscesses and all types of mean and nasty shit that is still affecting nine months later. (I will not get into my beliefs of how this may have been a plan to have anti biotics kills off my natural gut intuition that I've built up over a lifetime, but I am fighting back with pro biotic yogurt herb smoothies; eleuthero root powder got my mind right as fuck lately, except I call it Lucifer Foot Powder, because that sounds more metal.) But after the initial surgical infection (after the surgery), they put a drain and plug inside my gut, which because of the type of bacteria that had polluted me, caused the infection to explode tenfold, because the closed environment was the perfect breeding ground. Ultimately, this led to them basically going old school, slicing open my gut muscle so that there was a hole I could stick almost 2/3 of my pinkie finger inside of at first, and let me lay in a bed for three months, immobile, without use of my core gut muscles very much, in a painkiller stupor, being cursed by terrible dreams and writing delirium poetry that I mailed to friends in Australia to leave scattered around rural areas. (Most of it is around Sydney from what I understand, in case you were wanting to seek it out.) But I did not come to tell the ultimate story; I came to tell about the day I went back to the ER for the third time with that second surgical infection when they decided the best course of action was to slice me open and let me heal the old-fashioned way - as slowly as my body saw fit on its own. Because that day was Super Bowl Sunday, and we went into the hospital ER mid-afternoon, and let me tell you, the ER is packed on most Sundays, but a Super Bowl Sunday, shit was jumping. I laid in pain on a gurney in the hallway for a few hours, but a nice nurse lady seemed to take to me, and she dosed me up right smartly with codeine. Eventually I got placed into one of those ER holding rooms where it's actually like four spots separated by curtains and you can hear the guy in the next curtain stall complaining about pain, hoping to get painkillers, and them saying, "Sir, you don't have symptoms, and last time you pointed to your other shoulder," and it just goes on and on. That actually happened that night, but worked in my favor, as next to that degenerate, I was a godsend of a patient. So every time the nurse would come around and ask me what my pain was, I'd say, "Like an 8 or 9" which is probably true, on a 10 point scale, but I'm a pretty tough dude, so can tolerate bullshit like pain. Except in that situation, why bother? So my ol' lady cuts on the little TV hanging overhead, and the nurse keeps saying they will get a bed for me upstairs because I'm going to have to be in there for like five days or so (that's a sucky thing to hear), and I was pretty bummed by that reality, and also really in a lot of pain, and also really into watching the Super Bowl.
I guess at this point I should mention the previous Super Bowl we had a snowstorm about four days previous that knocked out power to my entire part of the state of Virginia, so we had lived in the dark for four days before the Super Bowl, no power that day (not until two days after) and had been in the habit of melting giant stock pots of snow on our woodstove for water. No shit. I had planned on cooking barbecue chicken and cole slaw for Super Bowl food and letting the kids watch the commercials, which we usually always mute in our household, and let the kids make up words for them, to take away the evil dual-sensory overloading power of marketing onslaughts from TV. So I dragged our grill through the two feet of snow right beside the back door, and cooked chicken and made cole slaw and we ate by candlelight, but the batteries in the radio were dying, plus once it went dark, the AM station carrying the football went fuzzy. At that point I went out to my truck and opened all the windows and stood in the snow drinking beer laying in the back of the truck while listening to the Saints beat the Colts.
So after that previous Super Bowl, I had been pretty stoked to watch the next Super Bowl (which was the last Super Bowl), except now I was in the fucking hospital, in an ER, with a babbling homeless asshole on the other side of a curtain, and it honestly felt like a thousand little demon ticks inside my body stabbing me with scissors internally. So every time the nurse came around and asked about pain, I was ready for a shot of codeine. And for whatever reason, she accommodated me, to my heart's desire. It was seriously the most fucked up I've been since spending about a month smoking opium with a friend in high school. Once the Super Bowl proper started, I was in a deep cloud, not even able to lift my head off the pillow, but sort of just tilted myself sideways to watch the little TV screen. This was regular codeine moments. And when the nurse would give me a fresh shot, I could feel it splash through my body and my head would crumble back into the pillow, and even though I was just laying there, I could feel the mist on my breath blow up into the air and splash all across my face. I could feel the wind patterns change around my face like those isobar graphs on good weather reports and shit, floating around the room. And through this, I watched the Packers/Steelers Super Bowl.
Unfortunately, I had just gotten a shot of codeine about ten minutes before halftime, which meant I had to endure the Black Eyed Peas in that hyper-aware state, and I saw them for the reptilian cyborg creations of far more wealthy men than you or I will ever hope to be. We could live the most productive lives of our lives for seven generations and not attain the power level of the men whose fingers I could see pulling the strings of those Black Eyed Peas on that stage, from a fake future full of false chlamydian promises to poison our now with Babylonian babble. Seriously.
So inside my head, I was seeing these manipulations taking place - and make no mistake about it, the NFL is a key cog in the World Illuminati, and a very important social engineering tool. I have discussed this with Neil many times, that how we are writing at Truths and Realities here, trying to scratch away at the internet's football website self-importance and pretending you know something someone else doesn't, I'm not quite sure we are really helping anything, or we may just be assisting marching our viking spirit warrior compadres in this Earth fight straight into the confining shackles of giving a fuck about things like Wild Card Berths and Third Round Draft Picks. But it is what feels right, so we do it.
Anyways, all of these terrible realities were staring me right into my soul, skipping the face and the eyeballs which normally can only see what is visible, and staring me straight into my soul, saying, "Raven, This is what Is, and you cannot fight it enough to stop it from infiltrating You." And the goddamned Black Eyed Peas was cyber-thumping behind this staredown into my soul, and I was feeling codeine-y, but also feeling very afraid - afraid of that reality, afraid of what these little bacteria stabbing pains really came from, whether I had been implanted with a silent weapon for a quiet war, what the fuck was going on, WHAT THE FUCK WAS GOING ON!
And from that haze came that rugged face - Aaron Rodgers - who played football in a way that was clear even through the haze. Understand my haze was not lifted, obviously, as I was pumping full of codeine plus the oxycodones I had taken secretly while waiting to get a curtain stall in the hallway, so everything was hazy. But Rodgers was so clear, so confident, he knew what was going on in that game, and in this game. He knew it was bullshit, the Black Eyed Peas, and he knew that the spectacle of the Super Bowl was complete and utter crap. He knew he was making money for those fingers above hand over fist, and only getting little pork chop bone scraps out of it, and yet people would condemn and hate him for being a millionaire somewhere down the road in the future. I could see in Aaron Rodgers face, he knew all of this. And yet he focused on the simple desire in his mind - to handle his job, which he had somehow ended up in, perhaps through luck, perhaps through chance, perhaps through some planning. He got there however he got there, but he had to handle his job, his calling at that moment. And it was then I realized me and Aaron Rodgers were exactly alike. It was the same reason I sent poetry carvings to Australia, and the same reason me and Neil write our semi-coherent babble about football on an internet that doesn't know us from a fourth-rate Grantland hack, nor care about us enough to splash past our site more than by chance. And yet we do it. And yet Aaron Rodgers does it. And yet you are here reading this. We are spirit warriors in a great fight, and although we don't even know what the fuck we are fighting, and often times we are killing ourselves because the fingers above that pull the strings position us to do so, and we lack the clear picture through all the haze to even see it like that, we are spirit warriors. And we can focus on that one task, regardless of whether in the grand scheme of things it is good or bad or makes sense or not, and we can handle that task unlike any other motherfucker ever could. Because we are spirit warriors. And let me tell you this about Aaron Rodgers and the Green Bay Packers - if you have a spirit warrior - a True Mother Fucking Real Life Spirit Warrior at the helm of what you are trying to do? You will not lose. Even if they do not repeat as Super Bowl champions this year, they will not have lost. Trust me.
WORST CASE SCENARIO (Neil): Fuck the Packers. Fuck. The. Packers. I have spent the last 20 years hating them with a fury normally seen only in mutant bees, coked up werewolves and women. Which is why it’s strange that, today, now that they are on top of the world and are the kings who we must drag kicking and screaming and bleeding off of the mountain, I actually . . . respect the Packers. Indeed. That is a strange thing to say. It’s a strange feeling to feel. I admit this. But the simple fact is that I actually like a lot of the Packers players. This includes Charles Woodson, who I have already explained is my favorite player in any sport ever. That sort of heresy could end up getting me tied to a stake and then set on fire in front of Ford Field, but fuck it, I am a man who speaks his mind, even if his mind is not in complete concert or harmony with the minds of his fellow tribesmen. Still . . . fuck the Packers. As much as I respect them – hell, as much as I outright like some of them – they are still the enemy and I will wish with all of my heart for my boys to slit their throats and then drink their blood in front of their weeping and wailing families. I don’t necessarily want to see bad things happen to Greg Jennings but if I have to sup upon his mother’s tears while his body floats down the River Styx in order to obtain entrance into my personal Kingdom of Heaven then so be it. These are strange and terrible times, after all, and they necessitate cruel and unsavory acts. You know what? I have overstated my respect for the Packers. Fuck them and fuck Aaron Rodgers. I don’t like them much after all. I still love Charles Woodson but I fear he is clouding my head with his sweet song. The rest of them can sup upon the glorious refuse of my anus. I apologize. That was an ugly thing to say and an even uglier thing to make you all picture, but this is the NFL goddammit and my Lions are on the precipice of something that I have always dreamed of and they have to go through the Packers to get there. No mercy. Sorry, Chuck, but if that means your back must be broken in front of the gates of hell while St. Calvin tap dances all over your wicked bones then so be it. This is just the way it is, noble friendo. With all that said, let’s take a look at the worst case scenario for these shitheels. The one player who was proven to be absolutely critical to the Packers success last season was Aaron Rodgers. It seemed like everyone else got hurt but the Pack just kept rolling on because Aaron Rodgers had harvested the soul of a Terminator prior to the season and he wasn’t going to be denied. (Don’t ask me if Terminators have souls because that could turn into a 5,000 word essay that would both horrify and alarm you and would force myself to drink a gallon of drain cleaner once I realized the terrible implications involved in the soulless pursuit of such an answer. Just thinking about it depresses me. One day, thousands of years from now, some alien squidman would blow some dust of an old printout and see those words written on them and he would know that that was the moment when humanity ceased to have any meaning or any worth in this fucked up universe. The meaninglessness of both that question and the answer are making me think dark thoughts, ugly and savage, so let’s just move on, okay?) But . . . Aaron Rodgers also was proven to be fragile himself, suffering from concussions (I won’t say for certain that those concussions came as a result of Raven Mack and me jumping him in an alley and beating the shit out of him with baseball bats and kicking in his temple with steel toed boots for what he did to Raven’s sister all those years ago, but I won’t say they weren’t either. If you don’t know the story . . . well, fuck, Raven, link that shit when you post this, okay? Also, you’re goddamn right that I’m talking directly to Raven and discussing site business within the context of this post. If that shit just blew your mind, I apologize.) and those concussions knocked him out of a couple of games, and when they did, the Packers suddenly looked very, very average. So . . . the worst case scenario, I think, for the Packers involves Aaron Rodgers getting concussed, missing most of the season and then finishing, like, 7-9 while the Lions steal the division and piss on their mortal dreams. This is also the best case scenario. If you ask me, anyway. And since I’m writing this, I’m going to go ahead and assume that I did just ask myself that, and wait . . . am I talking to myself again? Does my self-projection have a soul? Does that make the other me a Terminator too? Oh God, what does it all mean???
PLAYER TO PULL FOR (Raven): I have spoken of Aaron Rodgers redemption in my heart enough already, so let me just say that also while I was in hospital emergency room codeine stupor, seeing B.J. Raji's fat ass jive step to a Super Bowl TD was about the most amazing thing I had ever seen in a thousand years, which was only about seven minutes in normal human time. (Codeine is amazing, yet really hard to get as an illegal street drug.) So yes, B.J. Raji is a dude you can be cool with.
PLAYER TO HATE MOST (Neil): Hate that soulless replicant posing as me that I keep talking to. That motherfucker tried to steal my soul! Help! Raven, meet me at the Moroccan café where we saw that guy do that thing with that whore from Tripoli. We need to figure out how to handle this other me. Also, A.J. Hawk is a guy who sucks. Hate him. Oh, and Aaron Rodgers too, that fiend.
BEST NAME ON TEAM: Usually I would remark upon the name Jermichael Finley, but the Packers opening day roster has a guy named Shaky Smithson on it, which sounds like somebody you'd get drunk with while hiding from the law in an Appalachian holler.
IN A PERFECT WORLD (Neil): He’s after me. I can feel his presence in the room with me right now. He has my memories, my eyes, my nose, my face. He is bearing down on me, and . . . oh . . . oh God! No! I am fighting him with everything I have, but . . . but . . . hello, everyone. Everything is good, everything is calm. It is me, Neil. This is going to be a crackerjack season, boy I tell you. Whoo-whee! Help! I just wrested back control from the other me but I don’t know how long I can hold it so I say to you all . . . don’t trust anything I write from now on because it’s not me. It’s him. It’s . . . it’s . . . I’m just joking, everybody. There is only one Neil. You can trust me. This is, after all, a perfect world and these are wonderful times. And in these perfect times, the Green Bay Packers are the best football team in the world, and . . . no, you know what? I can’t even pretend to write that. It kills my soul. Or was it his soul? Is this me or is this him? I guess we’ll never know. I suppose, in the end, all you can do is trust me. Wait...
PROGNOSIS (Raven): This will be a year of parity for the NFL, and the Packers will only get to 11-5 in the regular season, which will be enough to win the NFC North, and they will go on to win the Super Bowl as well, as the riverside sticks told me, and it makes sense, because you cannot stop a Spirit Warrior.