When Tom Brady tells his receivers “you have the best half of your life, and I’ll have the best half of my life” it’s an indication that things did not go as planned during the first thirty minutes of the football game. I speak of course of the 2001 AFC Divisional Game held in Foxboro, MA where Mother Nature herself dropped a tremendous amount of snow for the entire game. Native PATRIOT fans are accustomed to this weather pattern whereas their opponent that evening traveled from Oakland, CA into a virtual snow globe. The score after the first three quarters of play that evening looked favorable for the Raiders to capture the AFC divisional title and look forward to the Super Bowl. Funny how the remaining fifteen minutes of that game changed the careers for a great many NFL players wearing the “Flying Elvis”.
Bonnie and I lived within reach of Charleston, SC at the time and we watched that game in a local sports bar named JR’z. When the game finished I was asked never to return. Never? “Yes, NEVER!” … I spent too much time in there anyway. Perhaps my life changed that night as well.
This weekend these two teams face each other at the Big O in downtown Oakland … time will tell. Sometimes things happen that just defy logic and this certainly includes the diagnosis of breast cancer. When we learned Bonnie was the newest breast cancer patient our lives had certainly changed and this blog documented it all as best possible to allow friends and family across the nation to follow our day to day struggles, accomplishments, feelings and plans. This blog also provided the network to chime in with their own thoughts which freed up Bonnie to read before taking her afternoon nap rather than having to converse long distance every day. Thank you Word Press for this opportunity.
This past Friday we met with our plastic surgeon down in Marin where good news was received regarding the pathology report — NO CANCER CELLS FOUND — and her new breasts look to be healing perfectly. I have to tell each of you … she’s never once bitched about her situation, never once asked the reasonable question “why me?” After our first few sessions with her surgeon, Dr. Laura Norton, she reminded Bonnie a number of times that her “inner strength” will take her the distance. Hearing this from Dr. Norton really helped the drive home from Santa Rosa each time and afforded my wife to stand tall, remain proud and deal with the decisions we had in front of us with confidence.
So back in Foxboro during that AFC Divisional game a call was made on the field by the referees that Tommy Brady did in fact “fumble” the football which the Raiders recovered. However – comma – the call was then reviewed by the upstairs officiating crew, removed from the chilling elements on the field and reversed the call in the favor of the NE PATRIOTS. The Raiders that evening were a proud organization, playing a very strong football game in an extremely hostile environment. When the upstairs officiating crew reversed the call – it had removed the wind from the Raider’s sails and the game was now left to a coin toss which the PATRIOTS won to start the overtime session and rest is history; the PATRIOTS go into Super Bowl XXXVI in New Orleans to face the fastest team on turf; the St. Louis Rams.
I guess things happen for a reason. In a season where my beloved RED SOX disappointed me to no end and failed RSN on the final out of the final game of the season I too know about feeling screwed. Tomorrow the PATS head to Oakland where revenge is best served cold. Here’s wishing for warm temperatures tomorrow as my wife, the girl I met at a Halloween dance in thirty-four years ago will be sitting here with me along the river enjoying each other’s company with many more RED SOX, PATRIOT, BRUIN and CELTIC seasons in our future.
Together we can do anything. This much we’ve proved these past nine months.