Fats Domino expressed my feelings perfectly when he sang, “Ain’t Dat A Shame.”
My tears fell like rain on Saturday when the New Orleans Saints went down in defeat to the Dallas Cowboys in the Superdome. The Saint’s perfect record (13 and 0) was blemished, while my perfect record continues – I’ve never seen the Saints win a game in person. Only on the tube have I experienced the thrill of victory.
I figure I’ve been in the Dome on more than 30 occasions, and never witnessed a Saints win. The crowd nicknamed me “The Jinx” and blamed the astounding loss and poor Saints performance on me.
We lived in The Big Easy in the early 80s when the Saints were so bad, we wore paper bags over our heads.
My family and I would go the Dome Sunday after Sunday and watch Archie Manning get sacked so many times he looked like a clearance item at Schwegmann’s Grocery.
Saturday marked our first trip back to cheer the Saints since 1985. The difference was the Saints had finally hit their stride and were working on an undefeated season – only one of two teams to make that claim in the entire league.
But, don’t blame Drew Brees. It’s all my fault the Saints couldn’t go 14 and 0. I should have stayed home.
I felt the loss brewing beginning the moment I checked into my hotel to find I’d been assigned to the 13th floor. No hotel should have a 13th floor, bad karma. Then I found a penny on the elevator – face down. We were doomed.
Nevertheless, I donned my “Who Dat” football jersey and my Fleur de Lis earrings – so heavy I could barely hold my head up – and headed for the Dome. By the end of the day, they were dragging the floor.
The next omen was my seating assignment. I was sitting in the press box where decorum dictates no show of emotion of any sort. My cheering was limited to little chirps which emanated from deep down in my throat every time the Cowboys completed a pass.
I had to run to the ladies’ room from time to time to let out a primordial howl. Then I would collect myself and return to the box where the agony of defeat was gathering like the thunder clouds which preceded Hurricane Katrina.
At the end of the day, the Saints rallied. If only we’d had another 15 seconds, we could have prevailed.
Life is just a series of little “if onlies,” isn’t it? But once in a blue moon, you can say “Yeah, dat’s da ticket.”
We were considering a return trip to the Dome this weekend when the Saints face Tampa Bay, but we want to go 14 and 1, so we’ll be staying home. Dat’s all folks.