It’s Pro Bowl Game Day and all I have to say is: Whoopie!.. no, seriously, big deal. I say that for two reasons, 1) The Packers are preparing for Super Bowl XLV and those who were or weren’t nominated have much better things to do with their time, and 2) I’ve been in Hawaii for Pro Bowl week and for the game.. let me tell you, it’s NOT a real game.
My husband and I went to Hawaii in 2003, for the sole purpose to go to the Pro Bowl. We did a lot of the things first time tourists do, went to the Cultural Center, went to a Luau, did a whale watch cruise, and saw Pearl Harbor. We had a great time.
This was back in the day, when the Pro Bowl was played after the Super Bowl, so the entire winning team was there and boy were they in a good mood! Some of the other players paid the way for the guys who helped them be successful. Like Buffalo Bills Ruben Brown, who brought the rest of the defense with him.
We also were lucky enough to stay in the same hotel as the NFL players. We saw them in the elevator, on the veranda, at the beach, at the restaurants, where ever you were, you could see a player.
I’m not an autograph hound, so I had no intention of approaching any players for that purpose, my husband on the other hand was extremely star-struck during our time there. He shook hands with the players, had me take his picture with them, he was.. in heaven.
My favorite player that week was Terrell Owens. He spent a lot of time with the fans, so much time, he missed many of the team meetings, got fined, etc. We know this because the local news ran a “daily” on player fines, who skipped meetings.
Most of the players treated their time there as a vacation. Which is understandable, they are in Hawaii after all. Most of them were very personable and wanted to interact with the fans, not such much with the guys carrying 12 inch thick binders filled with 8×10 photos, who’s only purpose in life is to get a signature to sell it later.
Then there were players like Peyton Manning, eight years ago, if you wanted to see him or get an autograph, you had to pay $75.00 and wait in line for 2 hours. But the all time biggest disappointment was Marvin Harrison. Not only did he go everywhere with an entourage of eight 300 lb, 6’6″ body guards circling him at all times, but if you looked in his direction for more than 10 seconds, he’d send over a goon to tell you “Mr. Harrison doesn’t want you to look at him”. Whatever, he wasn’t much to look at, certainly didn’t look like a football player, he was short and skinny.. kind of reminded me of Prince in stature. What happened to that guy anyway?
The morning of the game, we woke up to flags flying half mast. When we found out about the space shuttle Challenger disaster, it put us in a sad mood. Such a tragedy.
The game itself was a long and boring. So many TV timeouts I lost track of the number. There was no tackling, no sacks, no blitzes. It was nothing more than a flag football game with NFL players, really.
I learned that day, never expect anything except an exhibition when it comes to the Pro Bowl. So, sit back and enjoy the show, just don’t expect too much. The REAL show takes place next Sunday.. in Dallas!
Go Pack Go!