8:10pm: It’s time for the Boss! I’m not sure anyone had “10th Avenue Freezeout” in the pool picking Bruce Springsteen’s set for the halftime show, but I enjoyed it.
8:11pm: NBC’s cameras are trained quite closely on one particular woman in the crowd while Bruce and the E-Street band played “Born to Run.” As someone at the party put it best, the woman was “born to bounce.” I’ll leave the rest to your imaginations.
8:14pm: There’s a bald guy right in front of the stage (and thus Bruce) who is clearly really into the Boss, wildly gesticulating with each beat of the music. I’m almost certain that’s the same guy Dr. Jones and I saw at HSBC Arena last March when we went to see Springsteen. This guy must be the biggest Springsteen fan alive.
8:47pm: We’re back in action in the 3rd quarter. That was a ticky-tack roughing-the-passer call on Arizona.
8:54pm: But the Cardinals end up forcing the Steelers to punt, that positive outcome then negated by a stupid roughing the kicker penalty on the redbirds. Just a dumb play by Adrian Wilson.
8:58pm: Careerbuilder.com is clearly trying to redeem itself in my eyes. Having abandoned their near-perfect use of chimps in commercials a few years back (the best being the boardroom full of screeching chimps all using laser pointers to identify the lone human’s crotch during a presentation), they instead went with some sort of crazy Mad Max-like “jungle office,” and then had a random hodgepodge of commercials last year. Finally, we get back to some crazy animal action as a bespectacled koala is repeatedly punched in the face. I know, what could be better, right?
9:10pm: Some very uninspired play by Arizona thus far in the 3rd quarter. If they can’t get anything done on their next drive, it might be game over.
9:18pm: Bankruptcy veterans Ed McMahon and MC Hammer in an ad for Cash4Gold.com. I find it more sad than funny.
9:19pm: Al Michaels tells us the Cardinals are now moving with “alacrity.” Way to awkwardly shoehorn that in, Al. You don’t need to tell us how smart you think you are. I’m nearly certain Michaels uses that word at least eight times per year. Go back and watch all of the Sunday Night Football telecasts from 2008 to see; I’ll wait.
9:22pm: Arizona wastes a timeout after having just gained 3 yards for a first down. It’s not like they all had to run 20 yards down the field before the playclock expired. One wonders if wasting this TO will come back to haunt them.
9:25pm: Kurt Warner’s pass complete to Larry Fitzgerald for a TD. That is a HUGE catch by that beast of a receiver. What a catch. As John Madden so eloquently puts it, “that was a super, super, super catch.” Brilliant.
9:26pm: An ad for Hulu.com, which you should now be familiar with, as I’ve embedded about a dozen of their videos thus far in this post. I’m putting this in here because I love the slogan at the end: “Hulu: An evil plot to destroy the world.” I like that so much I may steal it. The Wayward Cynic: An Evil Plot to Destroy the World. Yeah, I like it.
9:30pm: The Steelers are back on offense and I’m surprised at how loud the crowd was. All we’d heard in the week leading up to the game is how well the Steeler fans travel and to expect a largely partisan Pittsburgh crowd frenetically waving their Terrible Towels throughout Raymond James Stadium. Perhaps there are more Cardinal fans there than we thought, if this crowd noise is any indication.
9:34pm: Saturday Night Live’s MacGruber makes an appearance in a Pepsi commercial, joined by none other than MacGyver himself, Richard Dean Anderson. PepSuber!
“There is only one cola he will pour into his mouth-hole!”
9:41pm: James Harrison, the hero of the first half, acts like a psychotic idiotic and punches a Cardinal after he’s tackled him. Throw him out of the game and say good-bye to your MVP award. Unfortunately, the nutjob didn’t cost the Steelers much, as they were already on their own 1-yard line.
9:44pm: HUGE penalty and resultant safety. Roethlisberger made a great pass to get the first down, but it’s negated by a holding penalty in the end zone. Wow, the game was essentially over had that o-lineman not pulled the Cardinal to the turf.
9:48pm: FITZGERALD! The beast runs wild down the field for a big-time touchdown. There’s no way the Arizona freaking Cardinals could be Super Bowl champs, right?
9:51pm: The Steelers are falling apart here, taking some bad penalties down the stretch. I’d hate to see the game just given away like this.
9:54pm: A promo for NBC’s “The Office,” set to air right after the game. The highlight was definitely Angela throwing her cat, Bandit, up into the ceiling. It then freaks out and crashes down through the ceiling tiles before darting off. CEILING CAT IS WATCHING YOU–I’m not going to finish that sentence, as this is a G-rated blog. Feel free to Google the phrase to read the rest of it, lest you think I came up with the brilliant Internet meme myself (and thus think I am insane).
9:57pm: Al Michaels tells us the wind is picking up. The director then cuts to a closeup shot of the flag atop the goalpost, which is barely moving in the 0.5 mph “wind.” Thanks, Al.
9:58pm: Another HUGE play (if it’s in all caps, you know I mean it), as Santonio Holmes hauls down a pass after it looked like Big Ben was done for. Roethlisberger has been fantastic at evading Arizona’s defensive pressure today, and if the Steelers somehow win, that might be enough to get him the MVP.
10:00pm: WOW! (This is bringing back memories of last year’s Super Bowl.) What a catch by Holmes! He gets both feet, or rather just his toes, down in the end zone for the go-ahead touchdown. What a crazy 4th quarter this has been.
10:05pm: Is there some Kurt Warner magic in the offing on this final drive?
10:08pm: Guess not. Shoulda thrown that ball away, Kurt. You waited about two seconds too long. The Steelers are once again champions of the world (six Super Bowl titles, most in NFL history).
Not quite as good a game as last year’s miracle Giants victory, but XLIII had a great finish, and we even got some chimps out of the whole deal. Hope you enjoyed the running diary; I’m off to pass out. Tune in next week for my sure-to-be-riveting running diary of the Pro Bowl! (Expect that to run all of five minutes, as I watch the opening kickoff and then change the channel to watch re-runs of Sanford & Son.)