Super Bowl Saturday
Teen with dangerous ideas wants to move the Super Bowl to Saturday, has momentum
A firm tenet of this publication, one which we abide by religiously, is "don't attack the teens in writing." I'll often hear it from my editors: "Shane, don't attack the teens in writing," they'll say, or "seriously, stop attacking the teens in writing."
A good rule...in theory. And yet, sometimes a situation presents itself in which we have no recourse but to, yes, attack a teen in writing. Today's teen is 18-year-old Frank Ruggieri, a high school senior from Florida who has introduced a petition to move the Super Bowl to Saturday. Apparently, he's been at it for years, and this meddling kid is having great success, with more than 80,000 signatures now on his change.org petition. And he's ravenous for more—he wants 150,000 at which point, I don't know, Biden has to read it aloud on TV or something. This is a real movement, and I'm scared.
Before I get into the substance of my remarks, in which I argue that these ideas are dangerous and un-American, let me lay out the principles of Ruggieri's argument:
— It will get more money
— It will get more visitors to the game
— More TV views because people can stay up
— More children can watch
— A Sunday SB costs employers $4.4 billion because of people calling out "sick" on Monday
— Drunk driving crashes go up 41% on Super Bowl Sunday compared to other Sundays
A few quick responses, if I may. In terms of worker productivity, I don't care, nor should Frank Ruggieri, nor should anyone. Those numbers are fake, they don't have any real-world effect, and arguing on behalf of bosses is exactly the kind of thing our teens should not be doing. As far as money, viewers, and game attendance, I'm pretty sure all of these are wrong—Roger Goodell said in 2018 that although the game was originally placed on Sunday as some sort of broadcast deal to protect high school and college football, it stays there because the audience is bigger—but even if they weren't wrong, I would like to repeat that I don't care. No teen should concern himself with the extent to which Roger Gooddell and the miserable cast of NFL owners he keeps in a Canton, OH crypt are lining their pockets.
I do feel bad for the kids, but also, the Super Bowl has an average end time of around 10:00 p.m. ET, and any parent who doesn't let their kids stay up that late for one day is a narc. It's actually good that we have this test, so parents who are forced to hit the hay at 9 p.m. and miss the end of the game can understand exactly what they're dealing with, and rebel accordingly. And as far as drunk driving? Buddy, if you think it's bad on a Sunday when people are showing some restraint in advance of a work day, I can promise you that it's going to be a million times worse on Saturday when all bets are off.
Okay. Now that I've debunked a teenager's claims, let's put forth the only true good argument for moving the Super Bowl to Saturday: It's more fun.
Sure. I can see that. Many sickos agree, including Loop editor Coleman Bentley, who believes Ruggieri is a hero teen. I get the premise of the argument—if it's on Saturday, we can party without restraint, knowing there's no work the next day.
But guess what? You can already party without restraint on Saturday. ANY Saturday. You don't need an excuse. Saturdays are fantastic days, especially for people without children who are still allowed to leave the home for mere leisure. I remember what that was like. It was nice. And it's available to you every time.
By adding a Super Bowl to a Saturday, here's what you're doing: You're gilding the lily. It's too much of a good thing. You don't need it! You're wasting resources! You're having cake for dessert just after eating a whole apple pie! Save the cake! You're going to want that cake tomorrow when the pie is gone!
Let me tell you about Sundays. I don't mean to be dramatic, but Sundays are horrible. Sundays are depressing. Sundays are a day for staring down the barrel of another work week, a slave to your society, and contemplating the darkness of existence. Sundays are a day of existential crisis.
We need something good on Sunday. We need a Super Bowl. Super Bowl Sunday is one of the few good Sundays, when you don't have to succumb to the dark thoughts until it's so late that you can just go to bed. Super Bowl Sundays are a salvation. Good game, funny commercials, perhaps a few friends, good food, and moderate drink. You don't get that on most Sundays, and if you take the Super Bowl away, you've just increased the number of rotten Sundays per year from 51 to 52.
I can tolerate 51, but 52 is my breaking point. I can't do 52. Make me endure that 52nd Sunday, and I'm shutting down and becoming a hobo.
Look, I admire Ruggieri. He is a teen of ambition and intelligence, and clearly a leader of men who has captured the national imagination. He has a bright future. One day I'll vote for him for president, and I'll pull that lever happily, if they still have levers. But this "Super Bowl on Saturday" movement is the most dangerous ideological campaign mankind has faced since they changed the flavor of a Butterfinger. We saw what happened there—disaster—and we don't want to go down that path. Keep the Super Bowl on Sunday, and keep America happy.