That's what he said! What what? In the butt!

Have you ever witnessed an exorcism? I mean a real one, not the Bobby Jindal kind. If not, let me tell you, it's pretty fucked up.

I know this now, because it happened to me Sunday evening. Didn't even see it coming, it just kinda happened. And it was excruciating. I was fine before the game. Hell, I was fine at halftime. But shortly after that, it began. I couldn't see straight. I was unable to make sense of anything. I started to feel something chewing on my very soul. I could feel myself being completely taken over by some terrifying mix of crippling fear and blinding rage. I became completely powerless to stop myself from flailing wildly about and spewing an incessant stream of expletives as my friends repeatedly pleaded "What the fuck is wrong with you?!?" I think at some point they were convinced I was simultaneously having both an acute myocardial infarction and a complete mental breakdown. I was inconsolable. I couldn't be reasoned with. The demons had taken me by the testicles.

The next 24 hours or so were absolutely brutal. I vaguely remember my friend getting right up in my face, pointing to the tee vee, and shouting something to the effect of "SCOREBOARD, BITCH! In the name of the lord I command you to look at it! LOOK AT IT!!!" As best I can recall, that happened about 30 times or so. It didn't work. I was too far gone. (Also, as an atheist, he's not exactly skilled at the whole exorcism thing anyway. He gave it a valiant effort, but he didn't really stand a chance.)

I'm pretty sure it was Drew's interception that broke me. Lance Moore's fumble was annoying, but for the most part, it rolled right off my back. After all, these things happen, and I'm usually the guy tweeting #wegotthis with the Saints down by two scores at halftime anyway. So no big deal there.

(Incidentally, in retrospect, thank God I didn't have easy access to a Twitter box Sunday evening. So many bullets dodged there.)

Kaare White's fumble didn't bother me too much either. Mostly because it was a fantastic play regardless of the way it ended. And it was still something between a 16 and a 24-yard net positive for the Saints. Small consolation, but consolation nonetheless.

I remember saying at halftime "The score doesn't really reflect it so far, but the truth is that the Saints are pretty much kicking their asses. And hey, they're getting the ball back to start the third quarter."

That was the last non-batshit-insane thought my mind would be able to process until sometime Monday afternoon.

The interception wasn't even a particularly bad play. It's not like it was a boneheaded decision by Drew or anything like that, it was just one hell of a great athletic play by Ahmad Brooks. That ball goes an inch higher and Jimmy Graham was taking it a good long way. Again, these things happen. The other guys are getting paid too, and they're pretty damn good. But it's nothing that can't be overcome. All that good stuff.

Still, in that moment, I completely lost my shit. It broke my brain, and cracked my soul wide open for the demons. The full weight of 2011 (not to mention pretty much the entire Dome Patrol Era) and the missed opportunities thereof came crashing down right on my genitals.

It was all happening again. For what seemed like the hundredth time. And I couldn't do a damn thing to stop it.

Any and all attempts to reap sweet vengeance on these assholes would eventually prove futile, one way or another, always and forever. All that fatalistic Saints fan bullshit that we here at moosedenied usually take so much pleasure in mocking was inside me. Worse yet, it had begun leaking out from every orifice.

From that moment, the rage took over. The desperate rage of a helpless man who has made up his mind (however irrationally) that he's just hopelessly fucked.

Everything that happened from that point on just further pissed me off. Never mind that the ensuing touchdown only put the Saints down by 3. Didn't matter. Never mind that the defense had been kicking ass all game (and all season.) Never mind that it was perfectly clear to any sane human being that the Saints were the better of the two teams on the field, and had been all game (and all season.) Never mind that there were still 27 fuckin' minutes remaining.

None of that made a damn bit of difference. The Saints weren't beaten, but I was. I'm not proud of it.

By the time the Saints turned it over on downs and Phil Dawson's forehead subsequently put the Saints down by (only) 6 with 13 whole minutes left, I had begun involuntarily bitching about everything, even the good stuff. Even as the Saints were calmly, patiently, methodically chipping away.

Any play that didn't result in a first down was TOTAL BULLSHIT!!! I remember mumbling incoherently about how Sean Payton and Drew Brees were dicking around and showing no urgency and all kinds of other crazy shit even as Meachem was hauling one in for 34 and Colston for 26.

(This is all true, by the way. It actually happened.)

I went absolutely apeshit when they didn't punch it in on three tries from the 6 and had to settle for the field goal ("ATTEMPT!!! FIELD GOAL ATTEMPT!!! WATCH HARTLEY FUCK THIS UP!!!") Hartley did not fuck it up, but it didn't matter because the Saints had a golden opportunity to take the lead and they couldn't even manage to convert a first-and-goal at the goddamn 6. And now they're gonna lose, and I am going to die and go to hell and I'm taking every last one of you assholes with me!

As God is my witness, when Hartley came out to kick the tying field goal, I shouted "THEY'RE NOT EVEN TRYING TO WIN THIS GAME!!!" Because even if Hartley manages to avoid fucking it up for a second consecutive time, there's still two minutes left and somebody will fuck it up. Jason David, Van Jakes, Johnnie Poe… take your pick.

I was still ranting and raving and acting like a damn lunatic even as the ball was going through the uprights for the win. "Scoreboard, bitch!" Nope. I had long since lost any semblance of rational thought. I mean, I had seen it with my own eyes. But the demons were making the rules, pal. And they weren't going down without a fight.

It wasn't until the following day that the exorcism finally took hold and the demons were cast out once and for all.

I credit the pot. Lots and lots of pot. Seriously, can't recommend it enough. (Remember, kids, medicine always works better than mystical hocus-pocus.)

Thanks too to our local Legits™ for bringing a healthy dose of that tasty post-win recappage. That also helped greatly… eventually. Because at first I was all "Wait, what now? What the hell is all this about the Saints kicking large amounts of ass? What game were you people watching?"

Still somewhat incredulous (because, as we all know, the Legits do have a knack for talking out of their asses) I consulted the stat sheet. Mmmmmm… delicious stats. Whether they're of the remedial or advanced variety, they all carry the sweet taste of truth.

Imagine my shock to discover that Pierre Thomas outrushed Frank Gore. That four Saints receivers posted more yards than Vernon Davis. That San Francisco's longest play from scrimmage was for 24 yards. That the Saints doubled 'em up in total yards. That Hartley really did go 3 for 3, all in the 4th quarter. (etc. etc. etc.)

That not only was it one of those games where "the Saints shoulda won by three scores" but also that, as it turns out, the Saints actually did win it.

What the hell?!?

So I went ahead and fired up the ole DVR'd telecast game film.

Now keep in mind that at this point I've still got three little hoof-shaped bulges wiggling around just below the skin right between my nipples, struggling to break through. So I'm not yet completely recovered here. But I'll be damned if that wasn't the coup de grâce. It was kinda like touching a bible, except that the contents of my DVR are all things that actually happened in real life*.

(*Schtick, people. Just schtick. Please remain calm.)

And right around the time Jim Harbaugh was shouting "FUUUUUCK!!!!!" in slow motion on national tee vee, I heard the disembodied voice of some old lady whisper "This soul… is clean."

At which point, I hit rewind about 50 times to laugh and laugh at Harbaugh's stupid face. (Because I was stoned. And also because it was hilarious!) And the old lady kept saying "Quit it. I already said it once, my work here is done. I'm not gonna keep saying it." And I was all "Shut up, lady. I don't give a shit. Leave me alone. Hashtag wegotthis."

So that's what an actual, real life exorcism is like.

I probably made it sound a hell of a lot cooler than it actually is, so I apologize in advance if you eventually come to discover that any part of this account was in any way misleading. Trust me, it sucked horribly.

But the good news is that all's well that ends well. And I'm proud to report that I am now a True Believer™. In all of it.

I mean, I thought I already was, but apparently there was a bunch of crazy evil shit still locked away down there in the deep dark recesses of my soul that had yet to be fully vanquished. Who knew?

Feeling much better now though. High five!

Better, and maybe just a little bit wiser. Because I've come to realize that all that baggage we Saints fans carry around with us doesn't just magically go away because we puff our chests out and swing our dicks around. Those demons are a hell of a lot more difficult to truly slay than I ever gave them credit for.

#wegotthis ain't just a hashtag. It's a state of being. A goddamn plane of existence, maaan! You can try to fake it, but the demons are either there or they're not. I found out the hard way Sunday evening that even if you're certain that they're long dead, you might wanna go ahead and pour a few gallons of hydrofluoric acid bong water on 'em just to make sure.

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