Dept. of NGAF


“Can you watch the game, just for a few minutes?”
“I’m reading.”
“We’re inside the 20. There’s 12 seconds left.”
“I told you I don’t like football.”
“Just pretend.”
“Go Giants.”
“Rams! Girl, football!”
“I’ll cross my fingers. How’s that?”

Final score: Seahawks 16, Rams 10, with the game tying pass dropped in the end zone, seconds after this photo was taken.

So it’s all her fault.

Also the fault of the bars downtown that refused to put the game on. What is up with that?
Me: Do you guys have the Rams on TV?
Mikkeller: (laughter) We never have games on.
Karl Strauss: Well, yeah. But its on mute.
Why? Why would you have a giant TV over your bar broadcasting the NFL, and sullen bar staff playing music instead?  Why would anyone watch a game they can’t hear? Its Sunday afternoon. Bars are three-quarters empty.  Thousand of CicLAVians are zipping past your door on bicycles. Some of them like football.  You going to send them back to the Valley?
Apparently, yes.

Four bars we went to with the TV on mute. Four! A gorgeous fall day we had on the bikes, ready to be topped off with a couple quarters of smashmouth football.  The Rams, vying for playoff position. Twenty years we’ve been waiting for this, and now, bupkes.

At Fifth and Spring, from an open doorway we heard a sudden roar of fandom, whistles, play-by-play, people in game jerseys spilling out on the sidewalk, the happy smells of spilled beer and fried food. All the encouraging indicia of sportsjoy.

The Rams? No.
The Chargers? No.
So we have established there are NFL fans in DTLA. Only their loyalties are elsewhere.

Mrs. UpintheValley, sensing my incipient crankiness,  persuaded someone at Beelman’s Pub to put the sound on, for which I am grateful. We ordered the requisite carbohydrate-laden appetizers and settled in for excitement.

All seven of us.  Six, if you count her.