Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The Catch

January 10, 2007 marks the 25th anniversary of “The Catch” that lifted the San Francisco 49ers over the Dallas Cowboys 28-27 to clinch the NFC championship.

Although the Cowboys had already been humiliated by the 49ers earlier in the season, The Catch was the magic moment at which the Niners entered the realm of dynasty and the Pokes began a slow decline that culminated in the unceremonious booting of Tom Landry in 1989. I can now appreciate Dwight Clark’s leap over Everson Walls in purely aesthetic terms (it may be the most photogenic catch in the history of football), but seeing it replayed always makes me feel a tinge of the nauseating shock that enveloped my family’s living room as we watched the game in Houston.

I remember we were supposed to go to the San Jacinto Inn after the game. The San Jacinto Inn was a noisy, family-style seafood house next to the Battleship Texas, not far from the very spot where Santa Anna surrendered Texas to Sam Houston. My dad and my uncle did battle with endless oysters on the half shell while I devoured bowl upon bowl of boiled shrimp. It was the first place I ever heard people clapping after a waiter dropped dishes. All that seafood didn’t come cheap, either. Dinner at the Inn was a rare occasion to be relished.

Unfortunately, The Catch had obliterated my zeal for the meal. I told my parents I’d rather just stay home and maybe eat some crackers. They said I was being ridiculous and ordered me into the back seat of the car. They were right, of course. To this day, I’ve never allowed another adverse professional sports event to destroy my appetite.

1 comment:

eliz. s. said...

This post is included in Austinist's best of the blogs this week.