Monday, December 6, 2010

Every Picture Doesn't Tell the Right Story, Don't It?

So Monday Night Football is about to start: New York Jets (9-2) at New England Patriots (9-2), in a battle for first place in the AFC. As a network always does, ESPN is showing scenic night shots of Boston, specifically Quincy Market. However, the Patriots play in Foxborough, and the approximate 22-mile distance between Foxboro and Boston may well be the longest distance between a football stadium and its associated city (possibly equaled only by Arlington/Dallas).

Twenty-two miles is not an insignificant distance, especially considering Boston's ubiquitous traffic problems. And at that remove, Foxborough residents certainly can't be considered Bostonians. In fact, Foxborough is actually closer to Providence, Rhode Island than it is to Boston.

So why not show exterior nights shots of Foxborough during the pregame introduction? After all, the franchise left Boston proper—and even abandoned its "Boston Patriots" name—in 1971, so Foxborough has earned that right. How about a shot of the Foxborough Comfort Inn bathed in its lawn spotlights? One of the jewels of the Foxborough Skyline, the Comfort Inn offers free breakfast and a fitness room equipped with a Stairmaster and a wall clock.

Or the Paine School, built in 1795, either apparently to teach color-blind colonial youngsters how to enter and exit structures or, according to its colloquial spelling, as Massachusetts' first S&M grotto.

And what about Extra Space Storage, one of Foxborough's finest self-storage facilities? Stuffed with sentimental garbage that local pack rats can't throw away, this oversized closet serves as the town's silent nerve center, likely housing aged heirlooms and hand-me-downs from Foxborough's bygone days. Who knows what treasures from its sleepy suburban past lay in climate-controlled darkness?

So, get on the ball and do away with the visual clich├ęs, football networks. There's a hell of a lot more to the hometown team than the postcard-mimicking money shot.

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