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February 24, 2012 by Alison Grisham

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I’m not much of a sports enthusiast. I mean, sure, I enjoy events like March Madness as much as the next girl. But that’s re- ally more about gambling than it is about sports. I can’t resist a bracket. If someone started running brackets for, say, on-deck shuffleboard, I’d probably be on a retiree’s cruise to St. Kitts right now, just to get a piece of the action.

In terms of regular sports though, I’m just not that interested. I don’t know who won the World Series last year, or when the next Olympics is starting. I’m not sure if Pete Sampras still plays tennis and I’d be hard pressed to tell you which team Peyton Manning plays for … although my son just screamed, “the Colts, dummy.” So color me enlightened.

Here’s what I can tell you. I know that Chris Evert and Greg Norman were married for about 18 months, that Wade Boggs is a sex addict, and that Tonya Harding was responsible for an assault on skater Nancy Kerrigan more than a decade ago. I know that Pete Rose was banned from baseball, that Tiger Woods cheated on his wife (a lot), and that beloved golfer, Payne Stewart, famous for wearing knickerbockers, died in a plane crash in 1999.

I know all of that because it has to do with the celebrity side of sports and, for what it’s worth, that’s the only part that keeps my attention.

So I bet you can guess the only 30 minutes of the Superbowl that I tuned in to see. Yep, it’s Madonna. Riveted to my seat with my mouth hanging open, I watched Madge dance, sing, and shimmy, while reworking her costume five times over the course of the halftime spectacle. I watched her climb bleachers in high heel boots, turn cart- wheels in a modified catsuit, and like the Ghost of Dancers Past … yes … I watched her “vogue.”

I am in awe of Madonna. When I was in college, I wore fingerless gloves and black lace dresses. I danced to “Material Girl,” and lip-synced to “Crazy for You.” But that was 25 years ago. Now, I’m wearing rubber gloves and a robe. I’m dancing with the Wii, and every once in a while I can be found humming the theme song to some crappy TV show, while washing the dishes. How can we be so different, Madonna and me?

In food terms, which is just about all I think about, Madonna is like a freshly cut bowl of passion fruit, whereas I’m more like a bag of soggy grapes that have been sitting in the back of your refrigerator longer than Kim Kardashian was married. For the love of Lady Gaga and Katie Perry, this woman just won’t quit. At 53, Madonna is in better shape than most 23-year-olds, and she shows no signs of stopping.

No matter what your opinion of this tour de force, Madonna has outlasted all the naysayers who predicted she was no more than a fad. She came, she rocked and she set the bar so high, that the new generation of pop singers will have to stand on each other’s shoulders just to glance over the top of it.

I admit I’m no sports fan. But, on this point especially, I have to agree with Alec Baldwin, “Two quarters of the Superbowl and Madonna [was] the strongest perform- er.”

Copyright Alison Grisham 2012. All rights reserved.

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