It all started with a coffee.
Normally, I am a “black coffee” type of person. No cream, no sugar… just liquid alertness. More importantly, I only really drink coffee when my kids have kept me up all night. On Sunday, my kids actually slept in until 6:30… which meant that I got to sleep in until 6:30. (NOTE: How sad is it that 6:30 is considered “sleeping in”?) To make a long story short, even though my energy level was already high due to sleeping in, the coffee shop near my parents’ house has a mocha that is simply amazing.
As I sipped on the warm, chocolaty goodness, I asked my dad if we could stream the Jets-Bills game on his iPad. He happily obliged my request, that way I could enjoy the Steelers-Browns game on the big screen, while cheering on the Bills on the small screen.
Meanwhile, my brother was not able to watch either game, and thus, he asked me to send him text updates of every single drive and/or of every significant play. And, as always, I was texting my buddy and fellow Point of Pittsburgh writer, Connor Isted.
Left hand on my coffee, right hand on my phone. Phone down, iPad up. Eyes up to the television, over to the iPad, down to the phone, and back up to the television. Text my brother, text Connor, take a sip of coffee… repeat.
Then, Ben Roethlisberger threw a perfect touchdown pass to Antonio Brown. At about the same time that the Bills went up on the Jets by over two touchdowns, both of which were the impetus for my brother-in-law to start texting me. As did his friend.
Left hand on my coffee, right hand on my phone. Caffeine kicking in. Phone down, iPad up. Text my brother, text Connor, text my brother-in-law and his friend. Eyes up to the television, over to the iPad, down to the phone, and back up to the television. Text my brother, text Connor, text my brother-in-law and his friend, take a sip of coffee… repeat.
Thankfully, halftime afforded me a reprieve. So, obviously, my mother decided that it was a good idea to give my children a new Hot Wheels ramp.
Right hand on my phone, left hand on a Hot Wheels car. Phone down, iPad up. Caffeine and adrenaline starting to make me jumpy. Text my brother, text Connor. Eyes up to the television, over to the iPad, down to the phone, and back up to the television. Text my brother-in-law and his friend, grab a Hot Wheel, look at the television, put my left hand in, put my left hand out, put my left hand in and shake it all about… repeat.
Just when I thought that I could not possibly handle any more stimulation, my mother-in-law started to text me. Her text arrived at the very moment when the Bills had gotten an interception with only two minutes left in the Jets-Bills game. Her text did not arrive alone, for it seems that not only did all of the aforementioned people react to the play, they apparently had been drinking coffee, as well. Because, each of them expressed their elation about that interception via no less than four texts. Honestly, I could not blame them for their hyper-texting, for my brain was also in an jubilation-induced frenzy.
Right hand on my phone, left hand on a Hot Wheels car. Caffeine plus adrenaline plus interception equals me needing to pee. No time to pee; must text my brother. Phone down, iPad up. Text Connor. Eyes up to the television, over to the iPad, down to the phone, and back up to the television. Text my brother-in-law and his friend, grab a Hot Wheel, look at the television. Text my mother-in-law… freak out… jump around… lose consciousness… repeat.
At this point, I was in such a craze that, literally, I could not focus on any single thing for more than five seconds. The three-hour steady dose of overstimulation, mixed with caffeine and adrenaline, culminated in my eyes darting around the room at a fevered pitch. With the Steelers-Browns game essentially over (Pittsburgh was up by sixteen points), my eyes were locked solely on the Jets-Bills game. The Jets had forty-four seconds to drive the field for a game-winning touchdown.
The speed at which I was pacing back and forth across the room was equivalent to the speed of my eyes darting from screen to screen to screen. Thus, when the Bills got the game-winning interception, I erupted… running up and down the halls, throwing my daughter up into the air, both of us screaming at the top of our lungs. My outburst of joy was so explosive and loud, that it made my eighteen-month old son drop his Hot Wheel car and run crying to his mom. Sorry, son… some day, you will understand.
And then… I collapsed.
I have never been so exhausted after watching a single game, let alone two. I am amazed by the fact that both games were so engaging. The Steelers gave the ball away three times and missed a field goal, which made the game too close for comfort, and much closer than the 28-12 score would indicate. Likewise, the 22-17 victory by the Bills was not sealed until the final eleven seconds of the game. To put it simply, it was the most frenetic three hours that I have ever experienced… akin to a small child opening presents on Christmas morning while simultaneously attending his own birthday party at Disneyland.
As I already mentioned, once all of my cheering had ebbed, I was emotionally and physically drained. I sat on the couch, just staring at the wall, with the broadest smile on my face, thinking: “Thank you, Rex Ryan, for one of the most enjoyable Sundays of my life.” It should be noted that if this is how intense the playoffs are going to be, I might need to hire a cardiologist to stand beside me during the upcoming games. That, and maybe I will skip the coffee.