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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Ready for the lunacy

I started packing my bags tonight, getting ready for the trip to Dallas - Fort Worth, actually.

This will be the fourth Super Bowl that I've covered, the first coming in 1995 in Tempe, Arizona.

Of the previous three that I've been to, I probably had the best time in Tempe. We stayed in Scottdale and, while we worked all day, we went at it hard at night in Old Scottdale.

My favorite memory from that trip was watching Thor Tolo almost get the crap kicked out of him at a place called the Sugar Shack after he accidentally spilled a beer on a guy and his date.

That was also the first time I met Mike Bires from the Beaver County Times. Mike wasn't on the beat yet and made the trip down as secondary coverage for Mike Prisuta.

It was 10 years before the Steelers went back. There were near-trips in 1997, 2001 and 2004.

The 2001 game was particularly memorable because Bill Belechick made a big deal about the Steelers making plans to leave after the game. We all had our bags packed.

You had to. Because of 9/11, there was only one week between the championship games and the Super Bowl. We were leaving the next morning.

New England had its plans in place as well, but Belechick being Belechick, he used that as a motivating factor.

Of course, when the Steelers finally did go back to the Super Bowl, it came in Detroit. We stayed in Pontiac, making it a bit of a hike to get around.

It also snowed like hell the night before the game. That's the thing I'll always remember about that trip. The only day I had off was basically one where you couldn't go anywhere.

Then came Tampa. Tampa had a great layout for a Super Bowl city. It was easy to get around and everything was close. We hung out at a place called the Green Iguana next to our hotel all week, though we did hit a couple of parties at night as well.

The best was the media party in Ybor City at the old Havana Club. They had guys rolling cigars in the place and were giving them away. Of course, the food and drinks were flowing freely as well.

We went out back and .38 Special was playing a live concert. I'm a child of the 80s, but I had forgotten how many hits that band had. Of course, they all sounded alike, so it's understandable.

What will the Super Bowl in Dallas bring? We'll see.

But check in on the blog daily for little nuggets I'll pass along throughout the week.

© ESPN 970-AM has added a pre-game show to the pre-game show from 2 to 4:30 p.m. that will feature yours truly and Joe Bendel.

We'll give you all the updates heading into the big game.


Anonymous said...

Good ol' 34 Special.

How does this team compare to the others in their dealing with the hype? Seems like the Packers are having some trouble with the distractions.

Dale Lolley said...

I don't see many distractions for the Steelers. And yes, the Packers are bickering about a team photo for cripes sake.

Anonymous said...

That's .38 Special, Dale. :)

Anonymous said...

Hey Dale! Huge Steeler fan down here in Dallas. Beware of the weather! It was 70s and golf yesterday with a forecast for ice on Tuesday. After growing up in Ytown, people down here have NO CLUE about driving in inclement conditions!

Are you staying in Fort Worth near the Steelers?

Patrick said...

damn Dale, you sound like you got a little Hunter S. Thompson in you on these trips

can I be your date?

Steelers Depot said...

Hey Dale, Who is .34 Special? Was that .38 Special cover band? lol

Dale Lolley said...

Yeah, muffed that one a bit. I just missed it by .04.

Patrick said...

did you remember the mescaline and the salt shaker full of cocaine?

Dale Lolley said...

I think I'll leave those in Washington.

Anonymous said...

We can't stop here Dale, this is bat country.

joe said...

have fun.
we thought about buying the $14,000 tickets behind the steeler bench. then saw that parking was $900. $900 to park is just to much

Anonymous said...

heard they are flying in hundreds of extra strippers

marc said...

peter king of has an article today quoting goodell about how none of the players he spoke to were supportive of #7. if that was the attitude earlier, have you seen a change since then?


Anonymous said...

Goodie was probably lying. That guy is a phony piece of trash. I almost hope there is a lockout so that everyone in the world will hate Goodell forever. F him

adamg said...

It was pretty well known that BR wasn't the most popular guy in the locker room or a particulary good teammate, but was accepted because his football skills gave the other players the best chance to win. It shouldn't be surprising that he got
little support from the teammates to whom Goodell spoke during the investigation of the happenings in GA.

Anonymous said...

Dale Lolley said...
Yeah, muffed that one a bit. I just missed it by .04.

..... probably because, oh I don't know, maybe you had 4 too many earlier that evening :)