Last year, when we knew we would be going to the Olin Family Reunion in Ashtabula, Ohio, I proclaimed that one of the other activities I REALLY wanted to do is to visit the Pro Football Hall of Fame. This is football as in the American game, not what Americans call soccer.
I’m a sucker for a good HoF. I’ve been to the Basketball one in Springfield, MA with The Wife (and infant Daughter); the surprisingly enjoyable Horse Racing HoF in Saratoga Springs, NY, with The Wife; and the Baseball HoF in Cooperstown, NY, which I’ve been to several times, going back to my childhood.
The Pro Football Hall of Fame provided a very entertaining time for me, as I was captivated about the history, from the 1920s, with highlights from each decade. On one wall was the won-loss record of every team, current or defunct, for every season.
The social impact of the sport was on display, from the reintegration of the NFL in the 1940s to Joe Namath’s pantyhose commercial.
And checking out the information about the players was fun. It’s true that I don’t much follow the National Football League much these past several years, and couldn’t tell you who won the Super Bowl two or three years ago. But I could tell you who was in the first five of them.
The NFL was something I experienced with others, initially with my father, watching the New York Giants each week of the season, then various friends. (I remember specifically that a now-ex of mine fell on the black ice the day the Buffalo Bills came back from the largest playoff deficit ever.)
Alas, it wasn’t nearly as much fun for The Wife and The Daughter. They were on some Xbox, trying to play. But they know so little about the fundamentals of the game that they kept getting “delay of game” penalties.
In fact, the Daughter’s favorite thing was noticing this utility poll very near the building, and recognizing it as a goalpost.
We did get lunch there – it wasn’t outrageously expensive – and heard on the NFL newsfeed that New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady’s four-game suspension would be reinstated. Good or bad news, depending on one’s rooting interests.
I recommend the Pro Football Hall of Fame for even the casual NFL fan or former fan, but not so much for those who don’t care about the game at all.
Photos (c) 2016 Lydia P. Green