Saturday, December 10th, 2016

Jimmy Irish previews the Super Bowl

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Today is the Super Bowl. I’ll probably tune in at half time to see The Who. I know people don’t believe me when I say this, but the older I get, the less I’m interested in professional sports.

So I decided to consult my long-time bookie friend, “Jimmy Irish,” last night to get his thoughts about the game. “Jimmy Irish” has been a close observer of the NFL for as long as I have been alive. He is also a sharp observer of life outside of football. For some reason, he’s always been known as “Jimmy Irish” (said as one word) and never just “Jimmy.” We met at a local tavern to discuss the game.

Me: Okay if I record this?
Jimmy Irish: What? They don’t teach short-hand anymore? (Nods.)
Me: Jimmy Irish, it’s been a while. How’s business?
Jimmy Irish: Not bad. The point spread is about where it should be, so I should make some decent money on the game despite the recession.
Me: I always thought your line of work was recession-proof.
Jimmy Irish: Not really. Now, when stupid Obama gets his head out of his ass and agrees to a real tax cut at the top end, ‘specially the corporate tax, people will get back to work. I’m hoping his {expletive} teleprompter figures it out soon so people go back to work by next season…
Me: O-kay. Getting back to the game, let’s find out your thoughts on the game.
Jimmy Irish: Just a sec’. (To waitress) Hon, an empty pint glass is an unhappy pint glass. Thanks. (Back to me.) Alright. I think it’s going to be a high-scoring game. However, I think the refs will lay off the dbs so the game won’t get out of hand. I think this is the game where Manning proves something. And if there’s any resentment between the Manning family and the Saints, we’ll find out tomorrow.
Me: What about the Saints?
Jimmy Irish: Great team, but vulnerable. {Expletive}, the Cowboys showed that. Drew Brees may be great, but not great enough. I think there’s misplaced sentiment for the Saints, and I hear it from some of my regulars. Now’s not the time to go weepy-eyed when you’re puttin’ your money down.
Me: Keys to the game?
Jimmy Irish: Normally I say defensive turnovers. If a defense scores, that team has a bigger chance of winning. That’s why I don’t like crybabies who hate the overtime rule. Defense plays, too, ya’ know. Where the Hell’s lunch? Why’d you pick this place?
Me: Jimmy Irish, you picked it. I didn’t even know where this place was.
Jimmy Irish: That’s because you don’t where to find good corned beef. Dumb Polack. Anyway, this may be the game that is the exception to the rule. Saints may get a turnover, but the Colts know how’ta win from behind. That’s the real key. They don’t panic.
Me: No fear of Manning throwing away the game?
Jimmy Irish: Look, that boy knows how to do two things. He wins games and sells credit cards. I’m not asking him the Gettysburg Address, I am asking him to win a {expletive} football game.
Me: So what you’re saying is, if you were betting on the game, you would bet the Colts and give up the five and a half?
Jimmy Irish: Look, I’ve told you before. I started making money on football the day I stopped betting on it. But if you want a recommendation, don’t eat at Taco Bell, and give up the points. (New waitress brings our sandwiches.) Honey, you’ve got the hour glass, and I’ve definitely got the time.
Me: (I interrupt.) What about the over-under? It’s what, 60 million?
Jimmy Irish: It’s at 57. About where it should be. If you’re dumb enough to play it, and I never said you were smart, bet the under. That’s a lot of points in a game where the corners will be able to mug the receivers. But what do I know? I’m just your bookie. I win either way.

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