Bears at Packers Game Preview: On the Rodgers Legacy in GB, Sondheim at the Cinema, Another Loss?!?

| December 10th, 2021

Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?

I always like the Chicago Bears.

And the game has significantly more juice with Justin Fields in the starting lineup. The idea of Nick Foles starting at Lambeau Field, in primetime, had some Henry Burris vs. Tampa (2002) vibes.

On Rodgers.

This could be the last time the Bears see Aaron Rodgers in a Green Bay Packers uniform. And it is very difficult to contextualize his tenure with the team. So here are a bunch of thoughts.

  • My biggest disappointment is the Bears never fielded a quarterback to go toe-to-toe with him. For all the talk of his “owning” the Bears, look at the opposing quarterbacks he owned. (I own a 2005 Chevy Cavalier with 206k miles on it. I don’t brag about it.) Jay Cutler was his best opposition, and nobody puts Cutler and Rodgers in the same sentence, unless that sentence starts, “If I were to rank quarterbacks by how much I didn’t want to be trapped in an elevator with them, it would go Cutler, Rodgers…”
  • There’s an odd symmetry between the regular season careers of Rodgers and Tom Brady, as both dominated weak divisions for the entire careers. But the symmetry ends there. Rodgers’ stats don’t fall in almost any important category in the postseason, except one. He is 135-65-1 in the regular season and 11-9 in the postseason, reaching only one Super Bowl. But is he really to blame for that?
    • His numbers do plummet in the NFC title game. He is 1-4. His TD/INT is 9/8. His rating is 83.7, a good 20 points lower than his regular season and non-title game ratings. If there is a fly in the ointment of his career, it is those games.
  • People have tried to assign logic to Rodgers’ desires to leave Green Bay, questioning why he’d want to abandon one of the better rosters in the league. But you can’t apply logic to people as thin-skinned and temperamental as Rodgers. If something the organization did offended him, it is unlikely he’ll ever move on from it. (This is a guy who cut off his entire family over a woman and she was like five women ago.) Rodgers is still on the Packers in 2021 because GB knew they had a title-contending roster this season and they also knew that wouldn’t be true with Jordan Love.

Sondheim at the Cinema

Once again, I’ll be writing more extensively about Sondheim this off-season when content is harder to come by, but I am using these game previews to simply share his work. Sondheim was a cinephile to an intense extent (I know the feeling). He and Anthony Perkins co-wrote the excellent film The Last of Sheila, which you can rent on Amazon or anywhere else you do those things. Here are some other contribution to the world of movies.


Stavisky (1974)

Sondheim wrote the absolutely lovely score for this underrated Alain Resnais picture.


Reds (1981)

Sondheim provided the song “Goodbye for Now” for Warren Beatty’s score. It’s a gorgeous melody that stands out dramatically in the film.


Dick Tracy (1990)

Sondheim won the Academy Award for “Sooner or Later” but I actually think “Back in Business” is the better song. However, I don’t know a Sondheim junkie that doesn’t consider Mandy Patinkin and Madonna’s gorgeous duet of “What Can You Lose” their favorite musical passage in the film.

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Cardinals at Bears Game Preview: Good Cardinals, Great Sondheim, Bad Prediction.

| December 3rd, 2021

Why Do I Like the Chicago Bears This Week?

I always like the Chicago Bears.

And 2021 is almost at its conclusion. Why harbor negative feelings?

Bears Need to Keep Game Close

This is the part of the game preview where I try to find an overarching theme for the contest. But Sunday is one tough tamale.

The Bears are too banged up on defense to find relevance there. (What even is this defense without Mack, Roquan and Hicks?)

Without Justin Fields playing – and he shouldn’t play until he’s 100% healthy – there’s little relevant happening on the offensive side of the ball. You want to get excited about Larry Borom and Darnell Mooney? That’s fine. But those two guys are going to be part of the program next season. Their next “important” game is in September.

So, what is worth watching? The score. The Bears have to keep this game close and competitive because if they don’t Soldier Field is going to a nightmare. The fans have had enough of the coach and they want blood. If the score gets out of hand in the second half, the only audible things on the telecast are going to be “Fire Nagy” chants. And those chants will be leading everyone’s game stories.

The Bears need to stay in this game and have a plausible chance to win in the fourth quarter. Will they?

Top 10 Sondheim Songs (From the Stage)

There will be plenty of time for me to write thoroughly about what Stephen Sondheim’s life and career means to me. But the world is currently flooded with those types of remembrances. As time moves along, and there’s distance from his passing, I will spend some more time with this difficult topic. For now, I’m sharing ten songs that display his genius in this form I love – musical theatre. They are ranked because I like ranking things. But the rankings are meaningless.


(10) Someone in a Tree, Pacific Overtures


(09) Comedy Tonight, A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum


(08) Losing My Mind, Follies

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Final Thoughts on Michael Sam, a Homosexual NFL Player and the Elephant in the Locker Room

| February 12th, 2014


Full disclosure: DaBearsBlog is not my only job.

I started my theatre career in New York City as the Assistant Artistic Director of a now-defunct organization called Musical Theatre Works. I was subsequently part of the team that launched the inaugural New York Musical Theatre Festival (“NYMF”) in the city and parlayed that gig into the role of Associate General Manager of the Helen Hayes Theatre on Broadway. (I was historically awful at the latter.) All the while I wrote. Plays. Musicals. Poetry. Everything. In 2005 I no longer depended on administrative-type roles to support my writing career. (That lasted a few years. Then it didn’t. Then it did again!)

Why do I tell you this? Because when it comes to homosexual exposure, I am uniquely qualified as a straight man. Most people might have a few folks they know who might be gay. Everyone I work with is gay. So let’s destroy a few myths and clarify a few things when it comes to Michael Sam’s prospective locker room reception in the NFL.

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