"I had a damn-it moment today," my good friend said into the phone.
I groaned. "Where did it come from this time?"
Her reason was paltry, as they always are. There usually isn't an explanation for those damn-it moments that overtake us every once in a while. Or if there is, it's small. Maybe a headline or a word or a stray thought.
There is always something minuscule that reminds us of the 2007 Patriots. And it's always that something that causes us to say "Damn it!" and usually punch something.
It's been over six weeks since the greatest disappointment in sports history ocurred and the wound is still raw. I can't even think about football, nevermind my Pats. Every time I let my mind wander into the world of the NFL, it drifts to that horrible day.
The sight of Manning's jersey slipping out of Jarvis Green's fingers or him completing that pass to Tyree right over the head of Harrison or that game ending interception running through Samuel's hands plays itself over and over in my head.
Then the what-ifs come. I can almost hear Joe Buck or Troy Aikmen screaming "Moss has it! The Patriots haves won!" after one of Tom Brady's desperation bombs. I can almost feel my friend hugging me and screaming as we celebrate our team's miracle win. But then I actually taste blood in my mouth and bring myself back to reality.
They lost. They did the unthinkable. They reached the pinacle of athletic acheivement and then the deepest from of disappontment. They spent millions, overcame adversity, and survived a nearly-catastrphic game in Baltimore to make it to the Super Bowl.
And they almost had it: the signature Tom Brady led, heart-in-throat-drive that was supposed to culminate in a Super win. It did, but the defense let them down. And I don't blame them, believe me, the offense had plenty of oppurtunities too.
The whole game was painful. No blowouts, easy points, or defensive scores—all prerequisites for our previous games. Unlike our previous seasons, there's no next year. We can't tell ourselves that we'll get the Giants next year and be 19-0 because it will never happen.
We will never have Brady pass for 50 TDs or spend millions on an unusually productive offseason. Most importantly, we will never be 18-0 and going for 19 again.
And as I watch one defensive back after another sign with other teams, I close my eyes and try to think of other things. But then those Super Bowl images pop into my head and I'm instantly forlorn. We lost one of the most important sports games in history. Damn it.