Originally posted on Facebook HERE
There are just some days you mark on your calendar as “special” days. Graduations, weddings, birthdays, anniversaries, first Sunday of the NFL season… you get the picture. We all have our own versions of what a “special” day is for us. I have friends who make a big deal out of every birthday, and others who don’t celebrate birthdays at all. Christmas Day is huge for many people, and not celebrated at all by others. So – we all have our own version of what constitutes a special day for us. Today is the first Sunday of the NFL season, always a huge day for me. I’ve been a fan of the Packers and the NFL as long as I can remember. I grew up with it, in the 60s when they didn’t show home games on TV in real time at all – you had to listen on the radio, then watch it after it had been played if you wanted to see the game. No devices available to record and watch later, either. The rule allowing home games to be shown in the local market if they were sold out didn’t change until 1973. So my dad and I would sit in the living room and listen to the radio play by play during the home games, or just wait and watch it after the game was over. It was easier to not hear what had happened back then. Crazy how things have changed now. But ever since I can remember – every second of every game was watched or listened to, many of them with my dad, who passed in 1981. So, yeah – the first Sunday of the NFL season is a special day to me. I can’t go into it without some fantastic but vague memories of watching and listening to the Packer games in our old living room on Doemel Street in Oshkosh… “that’s Vince Lombardi, son. #31 – that’s Jim Taylor, #5 is Paul Hornung”… it was awesome. It still is for me. Eventually I got into collecting football cards, I memorized all the stats that were on the back – I’ve always loved numbers. At some point I started knowing more about the players than he did. But every game, every year – through all the dark years after the Lombardi era was over… I’ve never lost my love for the Packers and/or NFL football. Today is a special day for me. Good chance it means nothing at all to you, but I do hope you have a few days like this in your life where you can look back and think – wow, what an awesome life I’ve had. What great memories this day brings. Whatever that day, or those days are for you – cherish them. Every day is special, but we do get a handful a year that we maybe look forward to more than most. Today, dad – we start the Jordan Love era for the Packers. And I know you’re still in the room with me every second of every game, because that’s what we do, right? It’s a very special day, indeed.