I have been living in New York City for eleven years now, and therefore have been here during many championship games featuring local teams — World Series, Super Bowls, Stanley Cups. I was just in my local supermarket in Washington Heights, which invariably has a lite-rock/lite-pop channel streaming on the PA system — and they were actually piping the audio of the Jets-Steelers struggle so that all patrons and employees could hear it. In the past, I’ve had the experience of walking past bars that were playing a Yankees or Giants game so you could hear it outside — but the Jets’ rise has been so delightfully unlikely that it has captured the city’s imagination in a more striking way, extending even into the supermarket. (One of my favorite ex-girlfriends is from Pittsburgh, a hometown Steelers fan, and my usual rule is to root for all the ex-girlfriends’ sports teams; but this time — apologies! — I will be supporting our local boys. Anyway, I think I used up my quota of ex-girlfriends’-teams karma on getting Auburn to win the national championship this year. If you want to see passionate intensity, date somebody who went to Auburn – it’s right up there with Notre Dame and Nebraska.)
UPDATE: Warmest congratulations to the gentlemen on both sides. First of all, to the Steelers, who were the better team on this Sunday and deserved to win. And to the Jets, who never gave up. Honestly, how many people thought, when it was 24–0, that there would be nail-biting suspense at the two-minute warning in the fourth quarter? An awesome effort; well done, men.