Each year, when the days get shorter and in the air hangs acrispness that tingles the nostrils, we are brought together as a nation toenjoy our greatest national holiday. It is a time of togetherness in which wejoin our loved ones to bask in the warm glow of our richest friend's 60inchplasma TV to incapacitate ourselves in an alcoholic stupor while yelling hindsightadvice and taunts at steroid-ridden man-beasts as they do battle on the screenand injure their selves for our amusement. I am of course talking aboutSuperbowl Sunday, a day that far surpasses in grandeur Christmas, Chinese NewYear, and all 8 days of Chanukah combined. Sure you may not get presents in thetraditional sense, but you might get to see a wardrobe malfunction at halftime. This hallowed day of rejoicing though is under attack and I for one willnot be joining in the festivities this year; this Superbowl Sunday you can findme snowboarding and boycotting this once great tradition.


The New England Patriots have ruined the Superbowl. Their 18" 0 performance thus far makes the battle for the championship a foregoneconclusion; I'd get more excitement and suspense out of another German invasionof Poland.At least that crushing defeat would take longer than 3 hours (though admittedlyonly slightly longer). "Anything could happen," some Giants fans may say, andwhile their optimism is adorable it is also bordering on retarded. Anythingcould indeed happen; Tom Brady could get struck by lightning and Wes Welkercould step on a landmine in the end zone. I for one will go ahead and justwatch the highlights on Monday's Sports Center.


With the writers strike stretching into it's fourth month weare inundated with an unprecedented amount of reruns; one can only watch thesame Seinfeld episode so many times. Watching TV has turned into a continuouslooping déjàvu, and this glitch in the Matrix seems to be spreading into oursports as well. Patriots in the Superbowl? I've seen that one more times than I'veseen the Soup Nazi say "no soup for you". Great, we get it, Tom Brady kicks assin the post season; I've seen him end my beloved San Diego Chargers' season twoyears in a row. Does this guy even have enough fingers available on which toput more Superbowl rings? I know he's only won three times, but I'm assumingthe other digits are being used to bang supermodels.


Aside from just the repetitive nature of seeing the Patriotswin the same championship ad nauseum we have to watch Eli Manning. Didn't wehave a manning last year? Haven't we learned the hard way from our currentpresident the value of not putting sub-par family members in as a replacementfor their forbears? It's bad enough having one Manning on the field, but thenthere is every commercial break in which Peyton Manning requires at least 85%of all screen time as per the new NFL rules.


This Superbowl Sunday, when you are all guzzling beer and stuffingyour face with nachos, eyes glued to the screen, I will be enjoying my otherfavorite winter activity, snowboarding (while stuffing my face with nachos andguzzling beer), hoping that next year we will have an NFL championship worthwatching.