There are lots of things that Marc brought into my life, he's brilliant and kind and a wonderful father. He introduced me to Judaism, libertarian-ism, and of course, gave me three awesome kids. One of the things I've found most interesting is that I've found myself doing things I would never have thought I'd do (like having a total stranger chop off part of my son's penis, converting to a religion that was completely foreign to me, and - please don't tell my mother - voting Republican in the last election).
But I haven't been able to get on board with his deep and abiding love of the New England Patriots. It's football, and that means really nothing to me. My only vague experience is thru high school Friday night games, and I just cheered when everyone else did (which did mean that I cheered at least half the time when the opposing team did something good - which did not win me points). I'm not a sports girl. I'm the farthest you can get from athletic. I'm perplexed, at best, when it comes to understanding why this matters to him, but it does. And because I love him, because we are raising our children together, I make Patriots Football Games (yes, it does need to be capitalized) serious events at our house.
Everything stops. Everyone must be involved - you don't have to be watching the game, but you do have to be in the room or within hearing distance. We usually eat the same thing (Marc's a big believer in ritual) and engage in the same activities. I curl up on the couch next to him, reading my book and nodding supportively when it seems appropriate. I make the kids come in and listen when he explains what's happening on-screen. I even make a game of pronouncing Ocho-Cinco. The kids can stay up as late as they want, as long as they are paying attention to the game (or at least, in the room, not making any noise).
And last Thursday - I really, really enjoyed it. It was a lovely night. Julianna went down to bed early, Jessie built an entire city of blocks and figurines on my dining room table and Sam puttered on the floor. Marc and I snuggled up on the couch, I read my book (Cinderella Ate My Daughter - awesome book) and I was achingly content. It was one of those moments (and fortunately, there are many of them in my life these days) when I was just happy to be me, here, with these people. And I have the New England Patriots to thank for it.