Sunday, February 7, 2010

The Who, the WhoDat Nation, and The Saints

I know many people have wondered why people in New Orleans are so excited that the New Orleans Saints are going to the Super Bowl.  I wondered myself why even I-- a self-avowed sports geek--was almost giddy.  The reason is not one easily explained, and it is linked to Katrina and the devastation our region suffered.  Now, I know that the rest of the country is tired of the word K-A-T-R-I-N-A, and we wish the monster had never come our way, believe me.  This team, however, has done a great deal for our rebuilding and this community.  Individual members have given to charities and schools.  The Brees Foundation has given large amounts to charity.  Today, I am wearing a Saints "Finish Strong" T-shirt.  The proceeds will go to local charities.  Their players go to schools to push character to local students.  We've never been so proud of a team or the young people who compose it.  Their visionary coach has brought them a long way.  Coach Peyton has stressed the need for community involvement and of working as a team.  

Today, the legendary Who will rock the WhoDat Nation(that's those of us in NO) in Miami.  Like the Saints, the Who have come a long way.  They began as the unapologetic bad boys of rock 'n' roll, leaving a trail of broken instruments in their wake.  They chanted that their generation "{wouldn't} get fooled again" and that they "hoped {they} died before {they} got old."  Through the rebellious hype, they emerged as one of the most important rock bands of the era, creating rock operas like Tommy and Quadrophenia.  Sadly, two of their members did die before they were old.  John Entwistle's licks on bass and Keith Moon's powerful drumming will be sorely missed; however, their large shoes have been filled by some impressive talent.  Simon Townsend (Pete's younger brother), Pino Paladino, and Zak Starkey will round out the Who's numbers Sunday evening. (Zak's dad played with a band called the Beatles.)  

Like the Who, the Saints also have been through many changes.  They were once the team that had no respect in the NFL.  Even those of us in their hometown called them "The Aints"  and wore bags over their heads.  The team, however, evolved from a group of athletes who didn't work as a unified whole into a group of professionals that perform like a well-oiled machine.  Like a well-rehearsed band of professional musicians, this team anticipates each other's moves and works together to create a gorgeous, rocking opera.  

Tonight, win or lose, I'll toast the Saints with Coppola's Merlot. 
Long Live the Who!  Long Live the WhoDat Nation!  Long Live the Saints!  

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