Well, dear reader, I promised I would write about his, and so I shall, mostly to satisfy the family & friends from afar who take interest in our little family's goings-on.
Nathan celebrated his 30th birthday last week (at least I believe it was last week - things have been in a bit of a tizzy in the Thanksgiving aftermath), in conjunction with Thanksgiving dinner.
To be fair, he actually celebrated his gift from us on the previous Sunday - at the Chicago Bears vs. the Philadelphia Eagles football game held at Soldier Field in Chicago. I had actually remembered this year to procure tickets more than a week prior to his birthday, and therefore didn't have to spend too pretty a penny for seats, although it's shameful the way that tickets are acceptably "scalped." Nevertheless, I am in no was abashed at the gift, as he attended with his father, and neither had ever attended a Bears game.
This, dear reader, may not seem like such a dire wrong. I've never attended a Bears game, or any professional football game, for that matter, and will happily progress to the next world without ever having done so, but for Nathan and his father to have never done so - it is almost akin to a travesty. Almost. I still have a proper sense of proportion.
So I arranged that George should drive in for the evening and meet up with Nathan at work, who had as yet been unaware of the plans. I packed warm "secular" clothes for Nathan - orange and blue, of course - and hid the tickets in a funny little card I made for him. We arrived to "pick him up" and gave him the card. He was very excited, and, after a bit of scrambling to meet up with George, embarked on the train to get to the stadium.
To the outside world, both Mr. George Davis and his son Nathan seem like pleasant, mild-mannered gentlemen. Both are veterans of the stage, and both are soft-spoken and spiritually-minded. Never have I heard either swear or raise his voice, or show aggression or brutishness.
And yet, when cut, both bleed orange and blue.
Our dear friend, Emeric, must be one of the most superstitious football fans ever. He won't watch the game with certain people, as he believes they jinx the outcome of the game. When the Bears are falling behind, he'll call me to see if Olivia is wearing her Bears sweatshirt. If not, I am told to put it on her. And he was pleasantly surprised one day to, in casual conversation, learn that Nathan was a football fan. Not only that, a BEARS fan. And, not only that, but could recite plays and statistics from years past with surprising alacrity. They immediately became friends, and we were honored with an invitation to watch the game with Emeric.
So George & Nathan attended their first Bears game together, with seats at the fifty yard line. The Bears had been faring rather poorly in the season (I overheard the idea that for some reason, perfectly good quarterbacks lose their spark in this team), and this game would be the turning point. If they won, they would still have a fighting chance for the playoffs, but if they lost, the season would be essentially over.
Of course, they lost. But it was a well-played game.
Not being so dedicated to a team myself, and knowing that by saying so here, I may forfeit all future invitations to Emeric's house to watch football, what I do like to see in a game is each team playing its best. I especially like to see players demonstrate courtesy (no personal fouls) and dignity. Just as in politics, there will always be someone upset by the outcome, and, Lord knows, the only thing we can eternally put stock in is the next world. So it is refreshing to see a team play with a good sense of healthy sportsmanship and honor. And a coach who doesn't lose his head or swear (at least not that I can tell) when things go otherwise than perfectly.
Don't worry, Bears fans. There is always next year. Hope springs eternal, even in sports.