By Hunter S. Thompson
Page 2

Last weekend was a monster for football junkies, despite what looked like insane violence on many football fields -- or maybe because of it. Who knows? Only a fool would worry about blood on the grass at a time like this, when football gets better and better every week and the best is yet to come -- except maybe for dead loads like Cleveland and San Francisco.

The wildest game of the week had to be Miami-New England, with Tom Brady throwing four (4) interceptions and losing to the Dolphins by one (1) point. That seemed impossible under any circumstances, and especially not on Monday Night Football.

It was more than just embarrassing to New England: It dealt a mortal blow to the fearful Patriots "mystique," which once intimidated every team in the league. If you had to play New England in a high-stakes game, you knew you were almost certainly doomed, no matter how well you played for the first 55 minutes. They would run you down and slit your heart in the end. It was automatic, because the Pats expected to win.

Just ask Peyton Manning. He also expects to win, but he has never beaten New England, not even in practice; and these failures stick like bones in his throat. He broods on it every day of his life, except Sundays and Tuesdays, when he likes to get together with Jim Irsay and listen to ancient Celtic war chants.

Peyton Manning
Peyton Manning appears poised to lead his team on a Super run.

Ho ho. That is gibberish, of course, and utterly naked of humor. Please accept my apologies. But there is nothing goofy about the Colts' expectations of winning the Super Bowl this year -- and, after Sunday night's huge victory over Baltimore, I think I agree with them.

Gambling on NFL football has always been risky; but last week, it was like swimming with sharks. Many high rollers were eaten alive on Sunday, and those who survived got murdered like Eskimo seals on Monday's stupefying shocker -- which caused an eruption of fear and grief in gambling dens from coast to coast. Strong men wept, and even women hurled themselves savagely down filthy stairwells in seedy towns like East St. Louis and Boston, and even out here in the frozen snow of the Rockies.

My own luck was splendid, as George Plimpton used to say, as I repeatedly fleeced and humiliated two of the cruelest and most depraved gamblers in America, the infamous Ewing Brothers from Charleston, South Carolina. It was wonderful. Those arrogant swine got what they deserved -- a massive public beating they will never forget. They came out here with big wads of cash and vengeance in their hearts for the losses they suffered last Christmas right here in this same evil room, where doom is their constant companion.

EDITORS NOTE: At this point in his column, Dr. Thompson passed out from over-excitement and heat stroke. To be continued ...

Dr. Hunter S. Thompson was born and raised in Louisville, Ky. His books include "Hell's Angels," "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas," "Fear and Loathing: On the Campaign Trail '72," "The Great Shark Hunt," "The Curse of Lono," "Generation of Swine," "Songs of the Doomed," "Screwjack," "Better Than Sex," "The Proud Highway," "The Rum Diary," and "Fear and Loathing in America." His latest book, "Kingdom of Fear," has just been released. A regular contributor to various national and international publications, Thompson now lives in a fortified compound near Aspen, Colo. His column, "Hey, Rube," appears regularly on Page 2.




Hunter
S.
Thompson
HEY, RUBE