New Year’s and the Saints at the Dome!

I didn’t bring my camera to the fireworks this year. I figure most major cities put on a fairly good display, though ours is shot off a barge over the mighty Mississippi, reflecting on the ever-flowing surface. And maybe other cities don’t have as many people wearing tuxedoes and top hats or costumes or beads or drag. But, the one thing I know your celebration didn’t have was Shamarr Allen and the Underdawgs playing in front of Jackson Square. I love that celebrations here almost always include horns and drums.

The fireworks were beautiful but what brought tears of joy to my eyes was when the fireworks were working their way toward the inevitable crescendo, someone started chanting “Who Dat? Who Dat? Who Dat sayin’ they gonna beat them Saints!” over and over as the sky glowed and sparkled with bursts of color. I cried because I am head over heels in love with New Orleans and 2011 has been one of the happiest years of my life.

The first day of 2012 started with the Saints last game of the regular season. The Mercedes-Benz Superdome filled with the 3 super-loud pre-game chants of “Who Dat? Who Dat? Who Dat sayin’ they gonna beat them Saints!” followed by U2 and Greenday’s raucous The Saints are Coming. If you’ve never had the privilege of going to a game in the Dome, enjoy the traditional chant after the coin toss in this video I found.

Saints fans are always dressed in gear, but with the recent Christmas, there were new additions to everyone’s wardrobes. I even saw 2 guys in the Saints pajama bottoms I just got from Santa (and the Black and Gold Sports Shop). The day was gorgeous, 76 degrees and sunny, a great day to Finish Strong!

We were only a minute and a half into the game before the Saints got their first touchdown and we did our victory dance to (Halftime) Stand up and Get Crunk. That’s when it became apparent how many people were hungover from last night’s revelry. Many were too pooped to pop.

Then records started getting broken all over the place. Drew Brees had already set the record for most passing yards in a season last week, so his 389 yards today set a new bar, though he sat out most of the fourth quarter. He also broke some of his own records as well as Peyton Manning’s 2010 record for single-season completions. MVP!!!

Wide receiver Marques Colston surpassed the 1,000-yard mark for the fifth time in 6 seasons. Running back Darren Sproles broke the NFL record for most all-purpose yards. Tight end Jimmy Graham broke the record for most receiving yards by a tight end, a record that had stood since 1980, only to have his record broken later that day by New England’s Rob Gronkowski. For a guy who’s only been playing football for 2 years (Graham was a basketball player), I’d say he has a brilliant future.

There were more records, like when punter Thomas Morstead broke his own team record of yards per punt. The team broke a franchise record for points in a season, an NFL record for fewest fumbles in a season, another NFL record for first downs for the season and a franchise record for season point total – 3rd in the history of the NFL. Even the Superdome broke its own record – highest single season attendance. But, the big record of the day was when the Saints beat the record for the most offensive yards in a season in the history of the NFL. What a team. Bless you boys!
It was an amazing game full of amazing moments and, by the second half, the stadium seemed to have shaken off their hangovers. We walked out of the stadium into one of the prettiest days ever with another spectacular victory under our belts. A great way to start the New Year.

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Filed under decorations and costumes, free events and lagniappe, the Saints

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