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I was just settling down to watch the end of the horrible 49ers-Bucs game Sunday when a meteor crashed into a deserted pasture somewhere above my house and all the lights went out. My first thought was that somebody in the neighborhood had touched off an underground nuclear device, or maybe another earthquake, like the one that hit San Francisco during the 1989 World Series.I felt the house shudder for a few seconds, but there was not much real noise -- just a big Thump, then nothing. ... "What the hell was that?" asked the sheriff, coming up from an underground sheep laboratory. "Are you people doing some shooting up here?" I just felt some kind of tremendous impact shock. It felt like a plane crashing." "So what?" I giggled. "The real game is starting. Nothing else matters now. The joke is over." Indeed. The mob in the coliseum was whipping itself into a frenzy as the Raiders took the field and began strutting and strolling around on the sideline and snapping footballs back and forth to each other, not talking much, just looking cool and acting sinister like any other gang of extremely high-priced, fine-tuned assassins on a big day at work. ... Near one end of the Raiders bench, Jerry Rice practiced sprinter starts and quick bursts of speed, then flapped his hands crazily to loosen them up. It is a trick I use frequently, for the same reason, and I recommend it highly.
We had just suffered through another shameful, weak-minded performance by the chicken-crap 49ers. Their season came to a dismal end at the hands of the hard-rocking Buccaneers, 31-6. It was horrible. I took one long, last look at that crowd of pampered, neurotic little bastards who have meant so much to my professional fortunes for so many years -- and I regretfully said, "So long, you swine. I'm moving my act across the Bay to Oakland, where we still know how to win."You bet, buster. That Tampa game was so disgusting that I turned in my badge. It was humiliating. I wanted to hurt somebody. "Where is Al Davis tonight?" I said to Anita. "I want to be with him." "No, you don't," she said firmly. "You'd better start concentrating on this game, or these gamblers are going to make a whimpering fool out of you. They still hold a grudge from what happened last year, when they pushed themselves to the brink of their own possibilities, only to be chopped off at their knees at the last moment, and they are still bitter about it." "Are those creepy brothers, those bastards, finally out of the valley?" asked the sheriff. "I can never relax until they leave town." "Then stay on your toes," I warned him. "Only one of them left. The other one will be here any minute, and he's all cranked up about being fleeced." Just then the other creepy brother walked briskly into the room, wearing his usual polo outfit and smacking his boot with a stiff leather crop. "Are you boys ready to kick ass today?" he snapped. "Are you ready to take a Beating?" "You bet," I said calmly. "I, for one, am resigned to a terrible beating today. I crave it." He nodded happily. "We will bet heavily on every play, for this game -- every pass, every kick, every fumble. I want to see money moving around this room like a high-speed cockfight." "Don't worry," I said. "Some people are going to be hurt badly today, and I may be one of them -- did you hear what happened to the Raiders quarterback?" "No," he said eagerly. "What happened to him? "He broke his thumb in a car accident," the sheriff said mournfully. "He is out for the year."
"Wonderful," he chuckled. "Then so are the Raiders. They don't have a chance.""Yeah," I agreed. "Too bad I am already stuck with them. I guess I'll need some points, now that Gannon is gone." There was a moment of tense silence in the room, then he screeched at me & shook his fist. "Points?" he yelled. "Points? Are you crazy. Only a jackass would give you Oakland with points!" I shrugged and laughed it off. "OK," I said finally. "What the hell? Why not? Forget the points -- I'll take it even." Just then the Raiders kicked off, and the game was under way. No more haggling. He nodded quickly at me, but said nothing. It was a deal. Indeed. And the rest is history, folks. It turned out that I didn't need those points, after all. ... The halftime score was 10-10, and the Jets were looking good -- so we doubled up/down and prepared for a long afternoon of raw, teeth-gritting suspense.
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