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Cooler Than the Other Side of the Pillow

February 7, 2012 by in category Archives tagged as , , ,

How’s this for a hero:
He strides into the story, ripped and ready, but with an understated calm reminiscent of Humphrey Bogart, Mr. Darcy, or Aragorn. He makes things happen with a mere flick of his eyes and remains in control of all he surveys. But this hero is a flesh and soul man – capable of making mistakes, but even more adept at shaking them off and getting on with it. He’s got a backstory of royalty, yet he’s worked like a coal miner to get everything he has. As the story surges towards its climax, he gets sweatier and dirtier, but the eyes remain steady. The battle he’s fighting makes your heart stutter and your breath catch – he makes you gasp and scream – both in ecstasy and in terror. You’ve thought about leaving him – maybe you should have! – but you never could. The promise of the next time was always too deliciously inviting. And there is always a next time – he never lets you down. When he finally vanquishes the demons and sweeps you away on a gush of euphoria, you love him with all your heart: the challenges, the heartbreak, the agony of the past make every moment in the afterglow unbearably sweet. You want it all again and again, and so rich is his potential that you’ll be plumbing the depths of his character for sequels to come.
“That’s Eli, man, cooler than the other side of the pillow.”
So said New York Giants wide receiver Mario Manningham about his quarterback Eli Manning just moments after their Superbowl victory Sunday night.
And for those of you who don’t like football, I get it. I spent 30 years of my life resenting televised sports. In my family, guys watched sports as they shooed girls out of the room. Lucky for me, I grew up and married a guy who loves football so much that he loves explaining it to me, teaching me, sharing it with me. Football is smart, complicated and chock full of amazing history. To get a sense of this, just check out Don Cheadle’s NFL Playoffs commercials on YouTube. (My favorite is the one titled “Joe.”)
And if you missed the Superbowl, NFL Network is replaying the game Wednesday at 8. And the replay is better than the televised broadcast. NFL films gives amazing shots and angles of the action, sound bytes from players and coaches who were miked up throughout the game, and best of all, they cut out all the downtime between plays so all you get is sixty minutes of rocking action that will leave you breathless. 
Check it out. You just might find yourself inspired.

-Geralyn Ruane
Ten year New York Giants fan and lifelong fan of men in general
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