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I was shocked. After the fantastic season and juuuust falling short of making the SuperBowl and ending his season with an interception, I was shocked to hear that Brett Favre was retiring. Had he made this announcement last year I don't think many people would have been surprised. This year?...I think 99% of Packer Nation was stunned speechless.

But, when you think about it it fits, doesn't it? I mean, after all, this is what Brett's been doing his whole career...shocking and stunning us with the unexpected. That's what we love about him more than his obvious physical attributes. His ability to keep us on the edge of our seats. Love his "gunslinging" style or not you have to admit he always kept it exciting.

So, retrospect none of us should have been shocked at's just typical Favre and I love it!

I could cite all the records and accomplishments here and tell you all why he was so great but we've all heard that before and have been reminded of it all this week. So I'm going to just assume you all already know all of that and comment specifically about one particular comment he made at his press conference that really struck me. That hit me even harder than the news of his retirement. In his press conference yesterday (which I thought was great. No notes just shooting straight from the hip) he said one particular thing that made me, once again, realize why I personally connected with this guy. We all love him because he's an "everyman' right? someone we all feel we could hang with and knock back a few beers with. The athlete with no ego who dresses in jeans and flip-flops and isn't afraid to say what he feels and show us he's human by shedding the occasional tear. And when he cried we all cried with him (if you didn't, I'm sorry, but you have no soul). But he's also a lot more cerebral than I think most people give him credit for. I think a lot of people see his carefree, huckleberry attitude and miss the fact that this guy has one heckuva head on his shoulders. He commented that the night before his press conference he watched some of the tributes the many and varied stations were showing. The old footage of his career and life and that watching this he understood what death felt like. The reporters laughed at first and he chuckled softly with them but he was serious. He meant it. You could see it in his eyes and you could see that the realization really affected him. Once again he showed us that he was, indeed, human. And when he made that comment my heart skipped a beat. It skipped a beat because I watched those very same tributes the night before and had the same exact feeling.

"What the hell do you mean, Rich? It wasn't your friggin' highlight reel they showed you idiot?" Right? Is that what you're saying right now? No, it wasn't my highlight reel. But watching it reminds me that I'm getting older with Brett. We're both in that same age bracket--I'm actually a couple years his senior (which makes it more depressing)--and for the last 16 years I've watched him every week under center during the football season. He's become a part of my life. A constant. And his retirement reminds me that a chapter has closed not only in his life but in mine as well. Time is moving on and there's nothing he can do about it and there's nothing I can do about it. We're one step closer to that final, inevitable, chapter.

I know this sounds rather ominous but you can't help but realize it. He realized as did I. It's sad and it's frightening. We all want to live forever and when a guy like Brett Favre comes along and is there every season, every week, every game, whether he's hurt or his father just passed away, whatever the situation, he's always there! It gives you a sense of immortality. Especially when he's the same age as you. You see him running around like a young kid out there every game and it makes you feel young.

And then he hangs it up. He's had enough.

Reality sets in. You realize again that he's "your age." You realize that you're getting older too. So I connected with him when he said he knew what it felt like to be dead. A chapter has closed in his life as well as mine.

And that makes me very sad. I'm going to miss that friggin' hillbilly.



Big Tim's Gravatar once again my friend, you nailed it. you, of all the people who know me, know how much I love this guy. He has touched us all in some way or another. It's true, another chapter of life psses, but lets hold on to the great memories of not just a great athlete, but rather, a great humanbeing. I remenber back in 1994 when you and Kieth Brown & I were watching that memorable playoff game against the Lions, Favre rolls left, throws against the grain and hits Sharpe for the game winner. We all embraced at that moment, not yet realizing the awsome ride he yould take us on for the next 14 years. It was a great ride. I will miss the athlete, but will always remember the MAN!!
# Posted By Big Tim | 3/7/08 10:46 PM
wayne beamer's Gravatar Hey Rich,

Were you as offended as I was to hear local and national sports radio hosts kick #4 to the curb because he wasn't one of the all time top 5 greatest QBs in the history of the NFL?

Young talkers and folks who should know better seem to have forgotten about Favre's famous predecessor, good ol' #15, who may not have been one of the league's all-time greats as compared to players just in our lifetime (Montana, Marino, Brady, Bradshaw and Unitas is the start of a good list), but he deserves the same amount of adolation and respect as Bart Starr, and a spot in the Hall of Fame to boot.

Besides how many quarterbacks could poke fun at themselves -- and the pronounciation of the last name -- in a movie and carry it off?

Case closed...

# Posted By wayne beamer | 3/10/08 10:49 AM
wayne beamer's Gravatar Hey Rich,

I earned brownie points for not mentioning Troy Aikman (3 Super Bowl rings, HOF, Fox announcer), Roger Staubach (two Super Bowl rings, real estate magnate), Dandy Don Meredith (irreplaceable voice of MNF for not enough years), Danny White (AFL coach, lost SB bid due to THE CATCH) and Tony Romo (Jessica Simpson, Terrell Owens and not much else) in the previous post...

Wayne, from his MacBook Pro from somewhere in Central Texas
# Posted By wayne beamer | 3/10/08 10:55 AM
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