That's what I call super

We are a proud country. You can tell by the way we name things. Today is Super Tuesday, which follows Super Sunday, which got its name because it's the day they play the Super Bowl.

There were no doubt many super-sized portions consumed while watching said Super Bowl, which sadly enough didn't feature any commercials for any movies about Superman. But the spectacle - both at the game in Arizona and at parties across the country - was certainly super, and oh, so very American.

As I sat eating from a plate crammed with chicken wings, chicken nuggets and deluxe mixed nuts, I couldn't help thinking how a foreigner might interpret what we have come to expect as Super Bowl normalcy. It's hard not to take your culture for granted, and that's true for sports fans as well.

While a diehard sports fan knows without even thinking about it that the Big 10 Conference has 11 teams, you can excuse others for finding that more than a little strange. The same principle, I think, applies to the Super Bowl.

Say someone has moved to the United States in the past two years. That person might wonder if we pass sports titles from family member to family member like we do the presidency.

Last year it was Peyton Manning leading the Indianapolis Colts to the Super Bowl title, and this year it was his little brother Eli helping the New York Giants to a historic upset of the New England Patriots. Which begs the question: What does that family do for an encore?

In addition to the mounds of food, a newcomer to this country might also notice that a lot of folks at the Super Bowl party don't seem to be big fans. More interested in the food and beverages being served and the conversations being had, some of these people aren't even sure who is playing.

However, these people seem to have a major rooting interest in something else - the commercials. They share that interest with the men and women sporting jerseys and spouting jargon, creating the interesting conundrum of more people paying better attention to the breaks in the action than the action itself.

And what is the deal with this piece of paper containing nothing but numbers and squares, the newcomer might ask? And why does that one guy seem so happy to have had a 7 and a 3, even though the final score was 17-14?

There is no shortage of questions regarding, with all due respect to The Masters, an American tradition like no other. But the one thing that can't be questioned is our love for this one particular game.

The Nielsen ratings were released on Monday, and more people watched Sunday's game than any other TV broadcast in history, save the 1983 series finale of "M-A-S-H." All those people eating all those chicken wings and watching all of those commercials, added up to 97.5 million.

It's an impressive, mind-boggling number. One you might even call super.

E-mail Todd Cline at todd.cline@gwinnettdailypost.com. His column appears on Tuesdays.