Well, that was an unpleasant surprise, was it not? Who was anticipating a couple of feet of blowing, drifting snow to supersede Super Bowl hoopla and recruit us all to the shovel brigades? But 'tis Wisconsin, and winter breaking out is always a possibility. Just pity the poor jamokes in those parts of the country that don't normally experience this stuff, because it happened in most places.
But the blizzard of 2011 is history, except for the cleanup, so it's time to get back to matters at hand. And the big matter at hand is the Super Bowl. We have a couple of preparatory features in this issue to help you this weekend.
As everyone who has witnessed the growth of the Super Bowl from narrow sports event to cultural phenomenon knows, it is not just about football anymore. Food is a major factor in the day. Features editor Linda Falkenstein, she who manages food coverage for Isthmus, realizes this and, as a public service, did a quick survey of area supermarkets and their special efforts for the special day. There's a lot of food that comes in the green and gold palette. I'm not so sure about the black and yellow. (Licorice and lemons?)
As for the football part, sports scribe Jason Joyce has prepared a primer for those of you not all that conversant with relevant football lore. You'll be needing this on Sunday unless you plan to spend the day reading in a corner.
Congratulations to news editor Bill Lueders for receiving the State Bar of Wisconsin's Golden Gavel award for 2010. The award is given for writing that enhances public understanding of the justice system. Recognized were three opinion columns Lueders wrote in late 2009, all with justice in the title: "Justice Is Everybody's Business," "A Tale of Blind Justice," and "Justice for Forest Shomberg." He will be honored at the Wisconsin Newspaper Association's convention in Appleton on Feb. 11. This is his fourth Golden Gavel, having won previously in 1990, 1996 and 2003.