Oh, it’s not because I was really worried about Denver being throttled by the 9ers. It’s because I was really worried about being throttled by the wife.
Emily and I have a very complicated relationship when it comes to sports. I love soccer. She doesn’t. I love hockey, specifically the Predators. She does, too. I am not really into baseball. She is (and she’s a Yankees fan, so I’m not allowed to like the Red Sox – my brother’s team). I enjoy football (and I’m a Jets fan, sadly). She does, too, and she’s a 49ers fan.
Mind you, all of the above is keeping in mind that I’m really not allowed to be all that much into sports. Emily doesn’t want a man sitting around watching sports all day. Honestly, I don’t think she has to worry about that.
But I bet the Broncos/49ers dynamic is what’s confusing you, considering that I just noted I’m a Jets fan.
Okay, I’ll explain.
I haven’t been that much into football since I moved to Nashville in 2006. Yes, I’m still a Jets fan (though I really had no expectations that they’d get into the Super Bowl those two years last decade where they went to the AFC Championship), but I’m also a Titans fan, and I’m definitely a Peyton Manning fan. My brother became a Denver Broncos fan back in the 80s when we lived in Denver. And John Elway is probably my favorite quarterback of all time. So it would seem rather natural that this year I’m crazy about the Broncos, right?
Not to my wife. Or, to be more specific – not that she recognizes.
The last couple years I sat with her and cheered for the 49ers, in solidarity with her and by the fact that the Jets barely play football anymore. It was a lot of fun and I genuinely was pulling for them to win. I even pulled for them to win this year in the playoffs (and was genuinely disappointed when they were beaten by the Seahawks). But I have an actual loyalty to the Broncos. She says it’s because I want to be cool like my brother, but it’s not that at all.
In any event, the threat had been looming since we were told we were due to have our baby in February – “If we have that baby during the Super Bowl and you’re rooting for anyone over the 49ers, you won’t be allowed into the delivery room!” By “anyone” she meant the Broncos, since that’s the only team I’d be pulling for over the 49ers this year anyway.
Now, I’m sure you’d see that as a silly threat. After all, what friend or family member of hers, under orders to keep me from the delivery room, would actually follow through and keep me from seeing the birth of my first child simply because I was rooting for the Broncos? Sure, she would, but would anyone else? I don’t think so. So the real threat was not that I wouldn’t get to see my child’s birth.
To be truthful, the threat was that I would get to see it, despite the fact that I was rooting for the Broncos. Because Emily’s growls of pain would become bites of anger; the squeezing of my hand would become a crushing of my bones; and when the doctor said “push”, she certainly would push me right through a window four stories up.
In short, rooting for the Broncos would mean that I could die. The threat was death. Plain and simple.
That was a close one.