Ahhh, Halloween. Truly the best portion of the calendar.
The World Series is on (FOX!!), the NFL season has hit its stride in Week 8 ... drinks are flowing, sexy costumes are everywhere and you can eat candy without people judging you (Hi, Mom! I'm not having too much!).
But it's also a time to confront your fears. Watch some scary movies, do something dangerous and gather your thoughts. Therefore, this week's topic is:
What scares you as an NFL fan? Let's get to work!
I'm glad you brought that up. Malcolm, I would recommend that you prepare for the worst. It's not guaranteed the Chargers will move to LA, but it's becoming more of a possibility with seemingly every passing day.
That means, you're going to need a plan to survive an emotional blow like this. I speak from experience as someone who grew up in Los Angeles and had to watch helplessly as the Rams AND Raiders both left in the same cursed summer. So, my advice? Treat it like a breakup and take it in steps.
2. Curse the Chargers' ownership. I'm not talking about saying something simple like, "screw Alex Spanos." No, that's not enough. Take it higher. Wish a pox upon his family, friends and anyone whose last name sounds vaguely like Spanos. Then extend those same curses to every player who takes a positive stance about the new city. This is not a nice thing to do, but it's a necessary step in the process.
3. Don't watch the NFL for a season. Don't worry, you won't want to anyway.
4. Drink. Heavily. Responsibly.
5. Compensate by taking a way-too-active interest in the Padres. Or San Diego State football.
6. Eventually start watching the NFL again and root for whatever team plays the Chargers each week. WARNING: Do not throw things at your television. Broken screens are expensive.
7. Pray the Chargers never win a Super Bowl in Los Angeles, but know it could happen. I supported the Rams for years, suffered through every humilating loss and even defended Jim Everett for the Phantom Sack. Only to watch them pack up for St. Louis and win a Super Bowl just a few years later.
8. Accept that this is life and you are destined to roam the earth for eternity, never to be attached to an NFL team again.
9. Continue to drink heavily.
10. Pray the NFL will rob another city of a team and bring it to your city. Is that a crappy thing to do. Yes, it is. Do it anyway. The ends justify the means -- as long as the ends are honorable. Someone wrote that once. And in this case, having an NFL team in your city is a noble goal (shutup, it is).
I reached Step 10 in 2005 -- 10 years after the Raiders and Rams left LA. Buckle up, Malcolm, you're in for one hell of a ride.
Andrew, this is nothing personal, but I hope you lose your team. I'm waiting on pins and needles for the Rams to come back to SoCal. Yes, they broke my heart. Yes, they sucked for years and then won a Super Bowl in St. Louis, of all places.
But I'm ready and willing to take them back. I will forgive them immediiately if they would JUST. COME. BACK.
But good news, Andrew. You can use the handy list I gave Malcolm to surviving the loss of your NFL team. It's just a 10-year process!
And yes, I hope Todd Gurley stays healthy. He'll be great in LA.
Politics? Hmmm, I usually treat this mailbag like I treat a bar: No talking about religion or politics. But, I'll make an exception.
I haven't decided who I'm going to vote for next year. It's way too early. But I will say this: Donald Trump is the candidate America deserves right now.
Was that a vague response? Maybe ...
Oh ... lord. I try not to think about that, but it's always in the back of my mind.
And it will probably come out of nowhere, too. We'll have forgotten about all that nonsense, when suddenly:
Deflategate will crash through a window and drag us all to a horrible fate. I pray every day that it doesn't happen. But I don't know if I can pray hard enough.
Don't get me started on Instagram. I'm not a huge fan of social media, but I'm into Twitter and Facebook. You can use them at your leisure and they really come in handy if you're bored somewhere with nothing to do.
However, Instagram is just about images. And I've never taken a good picture in my life. Zero. None. My face looks like an unholy jumble of blemishes and chins with a crooked nose to boot.
My wife? Not only is she very photogenic, she LOVES taking pictures. What a nightmare.
Hmmm, the Ravens have the Chargers at home this week. That's a winnable game as far as am I'm concerned.
However, one thing working against you? I picked the Ravens to win this game. That's not a good thing. I went 5-9 in my picks in Week 7. I truly suck at this.
Samira, I'm sorry. Your fears could come true. But hey, at least your team isn't moving to another city, right?
I hear you. Poor Tony has been banged-up so much, that every time he gets hit, this is my reaction:
And then I breathe a sigh of relief if he actually gets up off the turf. I don't know how much more punishment a guy can take.
Yeah, my favorite type of GM is the one who fires a good coach because he can't put aside his ego and do what's best for the team.
Tread carefully, Trent. Your time in the Bay Area could be running short.
Don't worry, the NFL isn't going to screw over Cleveland again. You probably are still working through your PTSD from the whole "moving to Baltimore" thing all those years ago, but it's time a for a breakthrough.
You lost your team and then got it back. They're not going to leave again ... or will they?
Life's little mysteries ...
OK, let's move on.
LET'S PLAY DRESS-UP
Give me your worst NFL-related Halloween costume ideas for this year.
It's a good thing that James is based in New York and I live in Los Angeles, because we would be duking it out Rousey-style every week.
But in this case, James speaks the truth. I can't defend my miserable performance. I'm still above .500 for the season ... but not by much.
Screech is back! And he changed his Twitter avatar! Thank you, dude. This is much better than that shot of you in your Speedos.
And A+ for the costume idea.
Nice! Still one of the funniest moments in NFL history. Good ole Broadway Joe.
Or he could potentially be Public Hero No. 1 for Los Angeles.
OK, folks! Have a FUN and safe Halloween. See you next week!