I know the answer to the question, but I don’t like it…so I ask it again, in the hope that someone will offer a different answer. That is, why is the Super Bowl played on Sunday night?
Let me list just a few of the almost infinite inconveniences that the schedule imposes on the game’s loyal fans.
First, the Indianapolis school district asked the state education poobahs for permission to start school two hours late on Monday morning, in anticipation of a Colts victory. The reasoning, of course, based on the assumption that joyous fans, the parents of the students and drivers of school buses, will be up very late celebrating a victory. Or, at the very least, they will be up very late celebrating the playing of the game, if you know what I mean. The buzzkillers in the state organs said no. Typical bureaucratic myopia. They don’t care because, as state employees, they have an unlimited number of sick days (with pay) that they can use for all sorts of celebratory excesses.
Second, the rest of America will be suffering from the effects of a late game. Absenteeism, lowered productivity, and general sluggishness will be the character of next Monday, unless you live in the hometown of the winner, in which case no work will be done at all (except in the Indianapolis schools, should they win).
Third, for those citizens who actually feel a sense of responsibility, a Sunday night game means that they can’t enjoy the festivities and the host’s lavish spread of craft beers and tasty hors d’oeuvres because they know that somebody will have to pick up the slack at the office on Monday. Such noble souls will, at the very least, suffer from the lack of sleep arising from the night game.
Why can’t they play the game on Saturday night? It’s not as if the coaches and players really need another day to prepare; their work has been done and they are ready to go. A Saturday night game would allow for a complete evening of revelry, no matter the result, and would give the all fans a day to recover from the excesses. Our nation, which really can’t afford a day off in this economy, would report to work recovered, rested, and refreshed, ready to discuss the nuances of the game, the ebb and flow of fortune, and gossip about the endless stories of their friends’ nutty behavior.
A win-win, I say.
The only losers in my scenario would be the travel packagers and hotels who feast on each team’s fans and the corporate sponsors. Because, in case you didn’t already know, no hotel will have any rooms available, said rooms having long since been sucked up by the aforesaid packagers in a 3 night block at an enormously surcharged nightly rate that no rational individual would agree to pay. Such greed, implicitly condoned by the NFL, and willingly borne by Fortune 500 companies paying off their best customers and providing a perq for the uppermost levels of management, deserves, at the very least, our enduring contempt in this age of renewed thrift and budgetary restraint.
So, to the NFL, I scream "Give the Super Bowl back to the Fans!