For me the highlight was visiting Hook's Drug Store Museum. It was right across the street from the entrance of the party and while everyone else was well-heeling it in to hobnob at the party, my wife and I checked it out. It was really cool. Remember those TV shows that depicted the early 1900's? They always had that drug store/general store with all the bottles lined up in those wooden shelves with the drawers underneath. That's what Hook's was with everything authentic. In those shows there was always the older pharmacist and the young apprentice who had bigger dreams. The moment I walked into Hook's my mind fell into one of those scenes. I could hear the pharmacist calling out, "Bobby, get me a bottle of cod liver and witch hazel for Mrs. Wilson." Bobby, a hard worker but distracted by his ambitions, mixes up the witch hazel with some sort of other potion and trouble ensues!
The party was meh. I know that sounds like a spoiled reaction but it is what it is. When we walked in there was someone wailing away at a Journey song. I said in all seriousness that this better be karaoke. It was that bad and way too loud. Unfortunately it wasn't karaoke.
Mercifully, whoever it was singing ended the set and a DJ took over, still too loud. I literally could not hear anything anyone was saying which kind of spoils a party in my view. The food was good, though, so there's that. I didn't see Commissioner Goodell. He didn't say hello to us when we arrived so I didn't feel compelled to find him and say thank you to our host when we decided to leave early.
Saturday was a special edition of PFW in Progress. I thought it was our best show of the week. We had the type of energy kids have the day before Christmas: joyful expectation of the perfect gift. A Patriots win today would be that gift. A loss would be a sweater and a pair of socks.
Afterwards I hoofed it into town to meet with a friend from Apple who is in for the game. I love talking with him. Just knowing that he's an insider at a place that produces such wonderful products is cool. He's a great guy too. We made plans for that night to eat at a place called Oakley's Bistro but I had to bag out due to exhaustion. As it turns out, I was up with the Patriots.com and Kraft Sports Production crew until midnight going over plans for game day.
Prior to meeting up with my Apple guy, I made a point to stop anyone walking around the city in Patriots gear and give them an MHK pin. A lot of fans already had them but those who didn't were over the top appreciative. I had fun doing it; made me feel as good as the people I was handing them out to.
Game day couldn't have come soon enough. Eight days after touching down in Indy it's finally here. I'm sitting in my press box perch as I write, high above the Lucas Oil Stadium field with around three hours to go. One of our PR guys, Aaron Salkin loves coming up with stats and he just fed me a couple: In four Super Bowls, Jerry Rice has 33 catches, Andre Reed has 27 in the same number of games. In only two games, Deion Branch has 21 receptions. Impressive. The other is a Tom Brady one. Brady has 1001 passing yards in four Super Bowls. If he gets 156 yards today, he'll be No. 1 in that category passing Kurt Warner who has 1,157.
Fans are starting to trickle in, just as anxious to get this going as I am. Honestly, I don't have a clue as to how this one will turn out. I am pretty certain it won't be like that other game that shall not be mentioned when Tom Brady spent much too much time on his back. That won't happen today. But beyond that, it's anyone's guess.
See you on the other side.