The Morning File / Football rivalries spark stunning idea for some couples

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T rue story: An Illinois couple who were divided in their loyalties to the Chicago Bears and Green Bay Packers settled it last week with a bet in which the winning spouse could Taser the loser.

In an ending fit for a romance novel, albeit a slightly unorthodox one, Bears fan John M. Grant was charged by police with felony possession of an electronic weapon after the Bears beat the Packers on "Monday Night Football." He and his wife were watching the game in a bar, where they made the wager. Afterward, police say, he used a Taser twice outside on Mrs. Grant with her consent, but when he did it a third time, the missus got mad and called police.

There are four key lessons to be learned from this little domestic/barroom drama:

1) Don't watch football with your wife.

2) Only Taser your spouse as much as he or she agrees to.

3) It's hard to win a bet on the Packers if Aaron Rodgers is knocked out of the game by injury.

4) Don't watch football with your wife.

The amazing thing is that such an incident has never occurred (to The Morning File's knowledge) within the Steelers Nation. Maybe it's because no Steelers fan would ever knowingly wed someone who planned to don a Browns or Ravens jersey the first football Sunday of the marriage.

Or maybe we're just unaware of what goes on behind closed doors. Maybe even the following conversation took place between a Pittsburgh husband and wife just 24 hours ago ...

Her: What time are the guys coming over to watch the Bills game, hon?

Him: I told them not to come today. I felt like watching with just you for a change.

Her: Awww, honey! That's so sweet. This'll be fun together. I'll go make some guacamole.

Him: Yeah, I thought we could spice things up a bit, too. Maybe make a little wager on the outcome.

Her: Hmmm, what'd you have in mind?

Him: It's going to sound a little odd, maybe, but hear me out. If the Bills win, you get to Taser me. If the Steelers win, I get to Taser you.

Her: Excuse me? Taser?

Him: Yeah, you know, those gizmos the police use to put down someone who's out of control. It'll be fun.

Her: Tell me something, Mr. Robocop -- how did I end up with the Bills in this scenario? I don't like the Bills. I don't even know a single one of their friggin' players.

Him: That's beside the point -- this is just to make the outcome more interesting. If you know you're going to be Tased a few times if your team loses, the game takes on a lot more meaning.

Her: A few times? Now I'm going to be Tased a few times? I don't know ...

Him: OK, two times is all. Well, maybe three. ... Let's just see how it goes. There's no need to start out with a lot of silly rules.

Her: Where'd you get a Taser anyway? Aren't they illegal for civilians?

Him: You know Stu down the street? His cousin's best friend is a policeman. He's letting me borrow one for the day, but don't tell anyone.

Her: Does it hurt?

Him: I don't know. I guess it hurts a little bit, if it's supposed to incapacitate you. We could drink a lot during the game, though -- that probably takes some of the sting out once we use it.

Her: This ... this sounds really crazy.

Him: Oh, and like it wasn't crazy to hire your co-worker's brother to fix the dishwasher, which is still broken a month later?

Her: How'd we get onto that? This is about Tasering me like I'm some trashy woman jumping on the back of a police officer who's trying to arrest my husband -- which I would never do, by the way, if you were arrested. And Tasering me over a football game! For a team I don't even like!

Him: You always say we're in a rut and need to try something different to give our romance more fun. That's all I'm trying to do here. You could show a little appreciation for my effort.

Her: Awww, I'm sorry, hon. You are so adorable, sometimes, when you want to be. OK, I'll try it, but look, I only want to be Tasered once ... or maybe twice if the first one doesn't hurt.

Him: Sure, absolutely, two times at the max. ... or maybe three. Let's just see how it goes. And who knows, maybe Buffalo even wins for you.

Her: Oy -- I'd rather the Steelers win, and I take the Tasering.

Him: That's the gal I love!


Gary Rotstein: grotstein@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1255.

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