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Wednesday, January 07, 2004

Nothing could have been sweeter

By Frozen Tundran

For PackerChatters.com

Some have wondered why the Packer Nation took such a perverse delight in the Viking's misfortunes in the Arizona game. Lemme say at the outset that literally nothing could have been sweeter, had it been the Bears it would have been merely a pale reflection, because it's hard to maintain the true emotion of a rivalry when you give them their regularly scheduled whupping twice per year--every year…even when they go 13-3.

The Vikings however, they had it coming like no Packer rival in half a century. You see, I was born in 1969, when I grew up the Pack was pathetic. We traded like a decade of draft choices for John Hadl to play (poorly) for us maybe one or two seasons. But every Sunday as a kiddie the whole extended family met at my grandparent's house to watch the Pack lose yet again. I will never forget '78 when we started something like 7-2 and managed to miss the playoffs by losing just about all the rest of our games and tying the goddamn Vikings (who won like their sixth Central Division Championship in a row, not that it ever did them any good) at 8-7-1 because we couldn't do more than tie them in a crucial game. We were so delusional in our deprivation we thought David Whitehurst might lead us to a Championship.

The Vikings, outside '72, won the Central Division...what was it, every other time in the Seventies? Something like that? EVERY SINGLE YEAR as a child trying to love my Packers the Vikings were there to give them a face bath in the yellow snow. At the most cruel and opportune times too, when we were trying to get to just ONE playoff game, when they went EVERY SINGLE YEAR.

After that Lynn Dickey returned--and we were a perennial contender---for a .500 season. Dickey to Lofton--all Sunday long--or whichever defensive back(s) were defending him. Dickey threw 29 interceptions one year, but at least he was fun to watch after David Whitehurst. No defense, no running game, no offensive line, all we had was Lynn Dickey, who could do only one thing: throw the ball as long as some linebacker wasn't squatting in his face but fell down when anyone breathed heavy in his general direction, (after having his leg broken brutally twice on sacks Dickey didn't take any chances) and James Lofton who was a great player trying to prop up a miserable team.

After that it got worse, we were a 4-12 team for several years and then one magical year a fellow by the name of Don Majkowski showed up off the scrap pile and had an ungodly season and we were 10-6--and missed the goddamn playoffs anyway, thanks to the miserable Vikings who snuck in--again--and blew their chance--yet again. So the best non-strike year the Pack had in my living memory until 1993 was of a season where we missed the playoffs but beat the Bears at their apex in the "after further review, the Bears still Suck!" game.

But the Vikings had one more trick up their sleeve before they were finished with this two decades of torture. In '92 we had another (our Majik fizzled out really quick) exciting young quarterback who was about to take us to our first playoff game in a non-strike year in two decades. Twenty YEARS! Viking Fans have NEVER been so deprived. Yet who is there at the very end to make sure they piss all over the hopes and prayers of Packer Fans worldwide? The Insufferable Vikings yet again. I watched them manhandle us that game like they were a particularly cruel cat toying with a helpless baby mouse.

That was a dozen years ago, and as you know, that exciting young quarterback brought the Pack back to prominence, and again gave us something that has eternally denied the Vikings. I see they talk of him with the same disparagement a generation of Packer fans had for their great quarterback. Going from the Packer Hater jokes on many Viking's websites they now seem to loathe the Packers *almost* as much as we hated the Vikings for just about a generation.

But imagine if there'd been no playoffs at all for them, and every single time they had a chance it was ALWAYS the Pack breaking their hearts? It would have been even worse then, wouldn't it have been? If it was the Pack who took them out in '98 after that missed field goal and beat them like dogs in '00 it would have been just about unbearable for Viking's fans, wouldn't it?

Thus that Act of God that ended their season was merely divine justice. Payback for those twenty years of humiliation they subjected us to, and their pompous smack after they were 6-0. The hubris that slayed Patrocules and others whom gods destroy.

I think I will die before I feel that good again, nothing could have been sweeter. Now they know how it felt in '78, '89 and '92. They will grow up with bile in their hearts, corrupted by hate until they can't see straight and morph into something perverse like an Eagles Fan. The final and cruelest blow.

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