23 January, 2013

Quoth The Raven

And I think he's telling me whom to root for in the Superbowl between the San Francisco 49ers and the Baltimore Ravens.

Now I have to admit I'm not much of a football fan, but I do pay a tad more attention when it comes down to the end. And, of course, one has to watch the commercials.

But whom do I root for when I don't really have a team I've followed all season? Might there be a sign? I've looked. I've I pondered over many a quaint and curious possibility.

It occurs to me that one of my favorite authors is Poe - who died in Baltimore and his most famous poem, the Raven, is the inspiration for the name of the Baltimore Ravens. That poem is also my favorite of his works. A sign?

A few nights ago I screened - with my daughter and her boyfriend - The Raven, a 2012 film starring John Cusack. Not great, but I have certainly watched far worse. Was it another sign?

Poe went to the University of Virginia for one semester; I stayed for eight. His room on the West Range was just five doors from my brother's when he was a graduate student at the University. The room is kept as a museum and includes a raven statue. More signs?

My father was a plankowner (a crew member at the time she was commissioned) on the USS Raven, AM-55. A minesweeper in World War Two, she served as convoy protection up and down the east coast and in the Caribbean. From Nova Scotia to Bermuda to Panama. She was also part of Operation Torch, the invasion of North Africa. He served as Engineering Officer from 1940 to 1943. Another sign?

And then we come to Sunday night's AFC Conference Championship contest between the Ravens and the New England Patriots. Keeping in mind that I really didn't have a dog in that fight, I found myself rooting for the Ravens - even though you might argue that the Pats should be my regional favorite. Another sign?

So there you have it - too many signs to ignore. While I munch and watch the commercials, I'll be pulling for the Ravens.

How about you? Do you have a favorite?