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Take 2

A different spin on sports by The Seattle Times staff and readers.

January 30, 2015 at 1:22 AM

Super Bowl XLIX in Phoenix like being in Seattle

Seahawks fans are everywhere here in downtown Phoenix. At least that’s what I’ve heard.

I’m not really sure. I’ve been holed up in my hotel room most of the week.

As sports editor of The Seattle Times, I’m in charge of our Super Bowl coverage this week. That means I get to coordinate our staff of 17 as they produce stories, photos and video for our website and newspaper. That also means the closest I’m likely to get to enjoying the sights and sounds of Super Bowl XLIX is staring down from my hotel window to see if the sun’s out, walking across the street to the Starbucks each morning and grabbing lunch somewhere close if I have time.

I’m not complaining. Most people would kill for this gig. But trust me, it’s not as glamorous as you think. Right now, for instance, I’m sitting here pounding out this blog at 9:15 p.m. on my laptop. And I’m answering emails, getting a game plan for tomorrow together and wondering if I have time to eat dinner with ESPN as my soundtrack.

Still, I get to read everything produced by our talented team of eight writers. I get to help connect our team of eight photographers, videographers and photo editors to all the great stories we’re trying to tell. And I get to watch as all that content magically is transformed into digital coverage and a daily miracle also known as a newspaper by dozens of talented people back in the office.

How cool is that?

Today, though, I went a little crazy. I left the room for more than an hour. I finally felt like I could go outside and enjoy some of that sunny Phoenix winter weather I’ve heard so much about. I put on shorts and flip-flops and headed outside.

Seahawk fans were everywhere. Music played in the street.

I found a barber shop and went in for a haircut I’ve needed for two weeks. Eddie the barber, a friendly guy from Uzbekistan, got me in and out quickly. As I paid him, he asked for a prediction on the big game.

“I think, Seahawks will win,” he said in his thick accent.

“What’s the score going to be?” I asked.

He looked stumped. “Score? I think, 28 for  you … 22 for them,” he said.

I asked what he thought would happen in the game, and he admitted he knew nothing about football.

“I wish my son was here,”he said. “He would tell you everything!”

I found a nearby deli, and washed down a salad with a Diet Coke for lunch. It felt good to be outside and not editing stories or calling reporters. Then I glanced at my watch and realized the first stories were due any minute.

As I headed back to the hotel, I noticed the clouds.

“Sea …”  was the familiar mating call I heard across the street.

I smiled.  Just like Seattle.

“HAWKS!” came the inevitable reply.

As I walked, I felt rain drops on my legs.

Want to be a reader contributor to The Seattle Times’ Take 2 blog? Email your original, previously unpublished work or proposal to Sports Editor Don Shelton at or Not all submissions can be published. Opinions expressed are those of authors, and The Times reserves the right to edit and publish any submissions online and/or in print.


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