Some miscellaneous thoughts while recovering from a Super Bowl-sans-Steelers.
n I know the home teams can't be in every Super Bowl, but it seemed like the general consensus among locals was that it was hard to root for the Giants or the Patriots; for many Pennsylvania fans the choice of champion was nothing more than the lesser of two evils. While the game was exciting, and certainly suspenseful, the level of interest locally seemed lackluster at best.
n Facebook reviews of Madonna's halftime performance were positive among the 80s generation; her level of fitness at 53 is particularly admirable. The Lady Gaga generation didn't seem as impressed with the original Material Girl but did enjoy the high-tech special effects.
n While I'm no Bill Belichick fan, I do appreciate a head coach who can make former loud mouth Chad Ochocinco "just another wide receiver."
n A Bill O'Brien Super Bowl ring would have been a unique recruiting tool for the new Nittany Lions football coach.
n The Giants defense, called "NASCAR" and described as a "speed package" was kind of fun, and now that football is finally over, it can't be long until the Super Bowl of auto racing begins. The sun and sand of Daytona call drivers to the first and biggest race of the season; Speedweeks rev up right around Valentine's Day. It should be a fun season with the musical chairs of drivers, crew chiefs and sponsors lasting longer than usual.
n Danica Patrick is already demanding attention for running a historic 10-race Cup schedule and setting a public goal of winning races in both the Sprint and Nationwide series. She should hope to accomplish that feat in a hurry to silence her naysayers, who may not be as interested in her "girl power." If she fails to live up to her own expectations, she could take a beating from the media as well as some of her fellow drivers.
n The St. Francis women's bowling team continues it second varsity season, using Altoona's Holiday Bowl as its home lanes. The Red Flash stand at 45-36 overall and 8-10 in the NEC after last weekend's tournament, which included two of the nation's top-three ranked teams. The Flash will host the PA Championship Tournament Feb. 25-26 in Altoona, an opportunity for local fans to see good collegiate competition.
n Here's hoping for a bark park: Many pet lovers in our region would love a safe place dedicated to dogs, where our four-legged friends could run and play just like their human counterparts. In many communities dog parks not only provide canine exercise and socialization, but also expose human visitors to a region's recreational facilities. Dog parks can even produce revenue, so a facility for man's best friend might also serve a greater good while encouraging more people and pets to enjoy the outdoors.
Kellie Goodman Shaffer can be reached at Kellie@BedfordCountyChamber.org. Her column appears on Tuesdays.