Leading up to the Super Bowl you'll hear from all manner of experts on who they think will win and why, but instead I sought out the most authoritative voice I know -- my mum.
Kate arrived via plane from Australia one week ago. She is poised to watch the Super Bowl in the USA for the first time. In fact, it's the first time she's watched the Super Bowl at all and might be the first game of American football she's ever seen. In the spirit of Roger Goodell's global NFL initiative, it seemed only appropriate to get a first-hand account of how far the NFL is pushing into other countries.
It's safe to say that Kate isn't the most sports-conscious. She follows tennis but little else, and would rather wait for Godot than kickoff. Nevertheless it's time to test her knowledge of the game we love so much.
The Super Bowl
Q: Alright, mum, thanks for doing this. First question: Who is playing in the Super Bowl this year?
A: (long pause) The Carolina Panthers and the (long pause) Chicago Raiders. Is that right?
A: The ... New York Yankees. Wait, I know that's baseball. The Jets?
Q: What is the Super Bowl?
A: It's the ... um ... football finals.
Q: How many Super Bowls have there been?
A: They're every year aren't they?
Q: Where is the Super Bowl being played this year?
A: Tampa, Florida.
Q: How would you attack "The Legion of Boom" if you were Adam Gase?
A: (long pause) I'd just run like hell towards them. They sound awful. They sound like they're going to attack me. I'd attack. If they were attacking me I'd attack them.
This is not bad advice
Q: You're invited to a Super Bowl party. What do you bring?
At this point, I elected to show my mother Richard Sherman's postgame interview to get her perspective.
Q: So mum, what do you think of Richard Sherman?
A: He's a bit scary.
The game of football
Q: What's a first down?
A: It's the first time the ball is put on the line.
Q: Which line?
A: I don't know.
Q: What is a wide receiver?
A: He's one of the fat men that stands on the side.
Q: What is a touchdown?
A: (long pause) When they put the ball over the line that allows them to have a goal.
Q: Who is your favorite football player?
A: I'm sure I've seen one some time. (long pause) Give me a hint.
Q: Broadway Joe.
A: Is that a hint? Joseph something?
A: Joe DiMaggio. I don't know!
Q: Should you ever count out Touchdown Tom?
Q: Peyton Manning
A: Bar room.
At this point I needed to pause, confused by this answer.
Q: Why "bar room"?
A: Because they play skittles after they've been to the bar.
My mother was referring to this European lawn game.
Q: Pete Carroll
A: Nice guy.
Q: John Fox
A: To be afraid of.
A: I think Denver's going to win, 78-42.