Why 04 was the Best Thrill

I have been following football since 1955. In addition to the Eagles, I liked the Pittsburgh Steelers. I remember the Steelers a the team that:

–won four Super Bowls in the 1974 to 1979 timeframe;
–lost the Super Bowl to the Dallas Cowboys in 1995 27 to 17;
–won two of three Super Bowls from 2005 to 2010.

The Eagles of course have been to the top in 1960, 1980, and 2004.

What makes the 2004 NFC Title game my greatest thrill and the 2008 game so painful. The answer is retirement. Most people cannot get work and the associated stress off their mind. Sunday night is the worst time of the week as five stressful and threatening days are coming straight at you. It is not unusual for people to spend two hours per day commuting to work. Add to that family problems we all face and your life is a 24/7 nightmare.

I personally can understand why some people turn to drugs, alcohol, and gambling as a escape from their problems. Now before I go further let me state that I have not yet seen anyone who has had an easier life than yours truly; but like I said I understand these social issues.

So I remember the thrill, in the 1980 NFC Championship game vs the Cowboys, of seeing Wilbert Montgomery running for 194 yards and that 42 yard run for a touchdown; the defensive line sacking Danny White eight times; and Randy Logan, Roynell Young, and Jerry Robinson going after Tony Dorsett causing a fumble at a very critical moment. Final Philadelphia 20 Dallas Cowboys 7. That ecstasy vanished in about an hour as I prepared for the week ahead. As you might expect I thought about work during the game at various times.

24 years later the 2004 NFC Title Game was my greatest thrill. I was retired and that is the best job ever. We remember the details of 10 years ago now so let’s not talk about it now. The last drive with Donovan McNabb chopping up the Atlanta secondary with his dagger like throws actually gave me goose bumps. His touchdown pass to Chad Lewis wrapped up the game. Eagles 27 Falcons 10.

After the game ended there was no preparing for work. What this shows is that job stress can hurt a person beyond the eight hours work.


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