What They’re Really Thinking: Close enough edition.

My sister Pens Fan went to the doctor today and was told she needs to gain weight.

So I ate a cinnamon roll this morning and told her to absorb the fat through osmosis.

I am nothing if not a giving person.

Also, I wish my doctor would tell me I need to gain weight. I’m so good at it! He’d give me an A+ for sure and would probably write a medical journal article about my superhuman ability to pack on the pounds using only Little Debbie and Starbucks.

What does that have to do with yesterday’s Steelers game? Not a damn thing. But I guess we gotta talk about the game?

I watched the game at home with my husband, who had this to say about Ben Roethlisberger on more than one occasion: “He’s such a moron.”

1. The big story was Peyton Manning. The commentary was all about Peyton Manning. Cris Collinsworth loves Peyton Manning. So does Al Michaels.

I hate Peyton Manning.

In fact, I wrote a song about him. It goes like this:

I hate Peyton Manning with the Colts.

I hate Peyton Manning with the Broncos.

I hate Peyton Manning …

Jump in when you know it.

2. Officiation (spellcheck says … NOT A WORD. Don’t care. Using it.) of yesterday’s game was brought to you by replacement refs, who seemed a bit confused at times:

(source: Post-Gazette)


3. They went so far as to let Mike Tomlin challenge a play that happened prior to a new play being run. This didn’t sit right with the Bronco’s coach who started challenging things that didn’t even happen to his team:

4. We interrupt this WTRT for the first stripey throwback sighting of the season!

5. The Steelers seemed … blah? Like blah. Nothing awesomely incredible happened. Other than Antonio Brown’s game face:

(Photo: Post-Gazette)

That’s the face of a man who could kill a diplodocus with his bare hands.

6. Jonathan Dwyer seemed to be the go-to rusher in Rashard’s absence, almost scoring a touchdown at one point, but it was negated because his knee was clearly down. Even Vladimir Putin was like, “Nyet!”

I guess the ball guys are on strike too?

7. The Steelers were in it right up until Ben had the game in his hands with three minutes left and I said to my husband, “This is the part in the game where Ben either throws a touchdown pass or he throws an interception. There is no middle ground.”

From my lips to the Karma Boomerang’s perfect ears (I always say the phrase “perfect ears” like Wesley in the Princess Bride.) because …

And Coach desperately tries to stop what’s happening, but not even I Dream of Jeannie can help:

8. With that interception returned for a touchdown, nothing could save us short of a miracle or a superhero.

(Photo: Post-Gazette)

If only, Hines. How’s retirement? Prune juice doing it for you?

But seriously, if I were a man who wore a business suit to work, I’d ONLY wear Superman undershirts. That’s just common sense.

Printer is jammed again? [Rips open shirt, popping all the buttons] I got this.

9. Again, it was all so blah. Troysus didn’t save us, nor did he damn us. Haley didn’t amaze us, nor did he greatly disappoint us. We just didn’t do enough and Peyton Manning did more, because he had something to prove.

10. Next week, we take on the Jets, again with Haley’s offense which includes a fullback which is apparently a big deal according to my husband, except I don’t know what a fullback is. Or a halfback for that matter. I assume it has something to do with … backs?


  1. bucdaddy
    September 10, 2012 3:49 pm

    I know a couple of things. I know the REAL NFL refs aren’t all that terrific at times. I know the average fan almost certainly isn’t going to notice the difference (although the players and coaches very well might). I know Pittsburgh is a big union town, or at least was.

    I also know none of that is going to keep 60,000 Steelers fans from crossing a picket line (real or symbolic) and filling a stadium for the rest of the season.

    I don’t pretend to be a big union guy, although I have eyes, so I saw how well the UMW took care of my FiL and now takes care of my MiL since Pap died. I also know that back in the ’90s none of this kept fans from coming to the games when the NFL ran actual scab PLAYERS on the field for three weeks. That lack of empathy, probably among other things, forced the NFLPA to kneel, and it’s been a lousy union ever since, with nothing near the strength of the baseball players’ union. I have a theory for why that is, which I’ll attach as a footnote, if you’re interested.

    This is a long-winded (as usual for me) way of getting around to saying: If you cross the line, you forfeit the right to complain about any botched calls for the rest of your life, IMO. The NFL is nickle-and-diming its referees and trying to turn it into a PR opportunity (Look! A female official!) and I think that’s despicable, but not as despicable as the fans letting the multibillion-dollar conglomerate known as the NFL get away with it. The NFL has all the leverage (YOU, the fan) and knows it, and is using it to steamroll another union, just like it steamrolled the NFLPA, because Jerry Jones doesn’t have enough money. Where is the farking “Occupy the NFL” movement?

    Enjoy your bread and circuses.

    *–Because of the way football players are armored, they are mostly indistinguishable. If baseball players went on strike and you went to a Pirates game and you saw the center fielder was a white guy with a crew cut, most fans would know they were being served an inferior product at major-league prices and they wouldn’t (I hope) swallow it. But you go to a football game and you see No. 47 or No. 81 out there with his helmet on, as long as he’s big, how would you know who it was? I might be able to recognize the Pirates’ backup catcher. How many Steelers fans could recognize the backup right guard? Or the starting O-line, for that matter? You can easily recognize Troy with his helmet on, and Ben and maybe Casey Hampton, if he has his shirt off. But there are 53 guys on the team, and how many of them could you pick out of a lineup? Baseball players (and basketball players) dress like little kids. Football players dress like robots, and I think this makes it hard for fans to think of them as human beings with families to care for and mortgages to pay. I think it’s very easy to not give a damn who’s out there as long as he’s in black and gold. Don’t think the NFL doesn’t know this, and it figures, if you don’t care whether we play real NFLers or scabs (and there’s probably not a whole lot of talent difference there, either), then you won’t care if we steamroll the referees’ union either. You probably don’t know what most of the penalties mean anyway. All you want is your team colors out there,. Like Seinfeld said, “We root for laundry.”

    • Pensgirl
      September 10, 2012 4:45 pm

      All true, but the NFL has been getting away with so much for so long, there’s no way anyone is going to blink over this. How about the NFL’s antitrust exemption being granted (in 1961) in exchange for the league promising to make its broadcasts available to everyone? As we know, only people who buy DirecTV and then the NFL package on top of it really have that access…but fans aren’t even upset about that, and it impacts their wallets directly.

  2. Jill M
    September 10, 2012 3:49 pm

    I always wondered what happened to Judge Reinhold? He’s chilling in Denver painting himself orange! BLAH!!!

  3. Jenn
    September 10, 2012 3:52 pm

    I have been waiting for these to start up again!!! The highlight of my Mondays….especially after a crappy game like last night! Keep up the amusement!!!

  4. Vivian formerly NYLuvsPitts
    September 10, 2012 4:21 pm

    Last night’s game was very suckie!!!! :-(

  5. Pensgirl
    September 10, 2012 4:51 pm

    I am going to ignore the game in favor of saying “GAAAH” to that headline. PGH or bust!

  6. Emme Kay
    September 10, 2012 4:56 pm

    I’m going to take a slightly different view from bucdaddy. Love him, but different life experiences. First, I’ll simply say that I found the NFL to be unwatchable when they brought in scabs. There was a big talent gulf. It was like watching the World League. Second, as much as I hate most of the owners (particularly Jerry Jones), I have a mixed view on unions, courtesy of my father having been a negotiator for his factory’s union for years. Unions can take care of their own, but when they make concessions they often toss hardworking, talented individuals under the bus for lazy jackasses who have seniority. It’s not a merit system. I thought some of the regular refs made a lot of mistakes, so I’m not surprised if the replacements do.

  7. Joe
    September 10, 2012 5:02 pm

    I love the close enough guy. You should bring him back every once and a while when no one expects it. :)

  8. Emme Kay
    September 10, 2012 5:16 pm

    My brother and I believe in the Little Gods, little supernatural beings who take notice when someone says things like, “X hasn’t had an interception in 80 passes!” or “This is cake. We should be finished in no time.” Then they interfere and screw things over. Sadly, sportscasters are fond of making such leading statements…

  9. will i.am
    September 10, 2012 5:49 pm

    Close Enough guy – Norm MacDonald and Will Arnett’s lovechild

  10. facie
    September 10, 2012 6:45 pm

    My silver lining in the game: at least we did not have to stay up for OT, only to watch the Steelers get beat on the first play. I call this game progress. And fortunately, there are at least 15 more of them (and here is hoping for at least 18 or 19).

  11. Kacie
    September 10, 2012 10:27 pm

    How can you hate Manning? He’s a good guy who put a lot of money for a children’s hospital in Indy. Not a a-hole. I’m not a colts Or broncos fan but I think Manning is a class act

    • Monty
      September 11, 2012 10:12 am

      Word. But you know she doesn’t actually mean it, right?

    • bucdaddy
      September 11, 2012 10:28 am

      In fairness I have to mention another class act.

      Bill Stewart used to be the head coach at I think VMI and most recently was head coach at WVU for three seasons. Bill Stewart dropped dead on a golf course this year, leaving besides his wife a teenage son, Blaine, who this year plays football for Morgantown High. At VMI, I think it was, Bill Stewart gave Mike Tomlin his first coaching job, as a grad assistant.

      Fast forward: Two Fridays ago, at Morgantown High’s opener, Mike Tomlin came to watch. And not only came to the game, but sat in the stands where regular people could pester him. I mean, he COULD have asked to stand on the sidelines to avoid that, and of course he probably had 100 other things he could have been doing rather than taking in a high school game int he first place. But he was there, and he made himself accessible, to give Blaine Stewart a little support.

      Hat tip, Mike.

      • KGC
        September 12, 2012 7:42 pm

        As both a MHS and WVU grad, I find this story to be wonderful. Bill Stewart appeared (on the outside) to be a truly wonderful human being.. he sucked as a D1 Coach and nearly ruined WVU, but one cold never question his love for WVU. Oh,, it looks like MHS is loaded again.. I would love to see them play some of the Western PA schools (Mt. Lebo, Upper St. Clair, etc.).. would be same result as WVU-sPitt.. a W for the WV team!

  12. AngryMongo
    September 11, 2012 7:46 am

    Is it me or is Ben starting to look like Will Ferrel without the curly hair? I could see him saying “Strategery”.

  13. Melanie
    September 11, 2012 3:20 pm

    Love reading your recaps. It makes the loss a tad easier to deal with.