Hey, Falcons fans. Gather 'round.
Yesterday was kind of rough, huh? Not really the production we're used to seeing. There were bright spots, but we're growing accustomed to the entire thing being one big, sparkly bright beam of blinding light. I know, I know.
But you can stop reading all the doomsday commentary. You don't have to find a headset and start practicing your play-calling. Put down the pigskin.
Because yesterday? That was all my fault.
Actually, hold on. That's too harsh. The blame for yesterday falls squarely on the eight shoulders of my family. Including the 1-year-old's. Perhaps especially the 1-year-old's.
This is all really hard for me to discuss. I've got a knot in my stomach, a lump in my throat, and a guilty conscience sufficient for an entirely new brand of Western religious philosophy. And yet I'm going to woman-up and just come clean so that we can all move on, together, and rise up from the ashes of yesterday's performance to emerge clean and bright like a diamond next Sunday.
(Notes to self: "Rise Up" would make a great team mantra, and "bright like a diamond" sounds like the beginnings of a sultry, catchy-cool song. Should communicate these ideas to someone ASAP.)
Okay, so here's what happened.
1. On a typical Sunday gameday, I go to church in the morning and send up a little "please oh dear God just please please please no injuries solid play victory formation please seriously are you getting this please please please." It's all very eloquent and special and pretty powerful, which is thanks to the careful drafting and diligent editing I do of my religious haikus. Well, yesterday, I WENT to church but I couldn't really ATTEND the service because (a) I brought my son, who is a devil, and I introduced that devil into God's house which just can't be karmic; and (b) I taught Sunday school, so I missed all the praying parts. Ergo, God and I didn't really get a chance to talk, and apparently God is pretty middle-schoolish when it comes to a person withholding a chat.
2. My daughter made friends. This is a very uncharacteristic thing for a Diaz to do, and yes, she's still being evaluated. These friends of hers held a birthday party yesterday. What time was the party? IT WAS AT 1PM, PEOPLE! So while the Falcons were punt-returning, I was watching my daughter jump in a bouncy house shaped like a castle. That quarter of 3 interceptions happened while I fished her out of a pit of Styrofoam blocks, and ended at about the same time she turned her lips blue with artificially-flavored cake frosting.
So thanks, daughter, for desecrating the sanctity of the gameday time slot with your friendship-cultivating diversions. See what happens when you don't listen to me about confining your activities to the home and the dangers of smiling?
3. My son took a 3.5 hour nap. This fact makes me put the lion's share of the blame on my son's shoulders, because this is where our family karma really triggered some nastiness. You see, my son hasn't napped well since The Robert Pattinson-Kristen Stewart Reconciliation. And that has caused me major frowning. I complained about it so much that someone - that sly fox, God; Mother Nature; Doctor Spock, whoever - decided that yesterday would be the day my son finally slept instead of shrieked. In retaliation, though, He/she/he decided I had to pay the piper in some form, and so He/she/he hit me in my other soft spot (my psychic soft part; physically, I am nothing but soft parts), and he made the Falcons game a slog-fest.
(That paragraph was supposed to prove yesterday was largely my son's fault, but really it looks like it's all my fault again. (Which is exactly how parenting works.))
4. And really, maybe this whole thing is my husband's fault. (Which is exactly how marriage works.) My husband, who only watches games if a relative is playing in them and still doesn't fully understand what happens during a football game, somehow has some cosmic connection to games. He always - ALWAYS - knew, as soon as his feet hit the arena, whether my sister would play well in a basketball game and whether her team would win. He spent the rest of those games reading the Financial Times, so assured was he of her performance and the outcome. I can't think of a game he called wrong.
It's the same with the Falcons. He ALWAYS knows, as soon as I fire up my parents' DirectTV or start cursing at ESPN's delayed "play-by-play," how the game will go. He sometimes can predict which players will have particularly good games. It's bizarre and also perhaps an untapped source of income for us that we haven't yet exploited, which is really unlike us.
Anyway, yesterday I was at the aforementioned birthday party and he was home doing yard work. AND HE COMPLETELY FORGOT THE GAME WAS ON. He didn't even remember there was a game until I came home with the fairly dismal report of where things stood as the 4th quarter ran down. He actually had the nerve to say "Oh my gosh, I completely forgot the game was on." To his credit, when he uttered those prophetic words, he looked like he was about to cry and/or vomit.
I am sorry, Falcons Nation. I promise to pray harder, to forbid my daughter from making additional friends, to zap my son with a toddler-friendly taser every time he seems inclined for shut-eye, and to have my husband so dialed in to future games that he will forget he ever even owned a rake.