And the 2021-22 Outsider Inbox MVP is…Wes Hodkiewicz
11. What’s the most unusual setting in which you’ve watched a Packers game?
Rick from Greenfield, WI
Caribbean Beach resort at Disney World in the bar watching Brett’s amazing tribute game to his father on Dec. 23, 2003. Fans from all over the world cheering no matter their own team or sport allegiance. It’s still unforgettable to this day. I will still watch the DVD several times a year.
Bill from Yokosuka, Japan
I am in the Navy and was at sea on a submarine during Super Bowl XXXII. Although unable to watch the game, we deployed a cable antenna and received a radio broadcast of the Super Bowl in Spanish. We had a speaker set up in the crew’s mess and a shipmate who spoke Spanish translated the game for us as other sailors displayed the play-by-play on a whiteboard. Although the result was not what I hoped for, it was a memorable way to “watch” the game.
Chris from Andover, MN
Peace Corps Vol. from 2009-11, I took a three-hour bus ride to a friend’s place with a satellite dish to watch the Super Bowl in rural Botswana. It was the only game I watched.
Terry from Elroy, WI
In 1983, I was attending the University of Warwick near Coventry, England. Coverage of NFL games on English television at the time was pretty much limited to a weekly summary of the games from the previous week. Generally, each game would be covered with highlights in about a five-minute span. The week of the high-scoring Green Bay-Washington Monday Night Football game, the coverage of that game took almost the entire hour.
Steve from Plover, WI
The most unusual and memorable place I watched a Packers game was Super Bowl XLV. We had booked a Caribbean cruise before I realized it was over Super Bowl Sunday. I figured the odds were low that the Packers would be playing. The cruise ship cancelled the show in the big theater, got the game on satellite, decorated one half for each team, provided tailgate food (but no brats, ugh). I brought my Cheesehead and wagered it against a Steelers Terrible Towel with a couple from Pittsburgh. GPG!
Dan from Brookfield, WI
I watched the 2004 Monday Night Football home game against the Rams while working out in hotel gym in Manila, Philippines, on a Tuesday morning. Announcer John Madden pointed out the Rams punter, Kevin Stemke, was a Green Bay native whose father was attending the game. I did a double take as the TV camera panned to the father: OMG! Horst Stemke! Horst had been my soccer coach back in the day after finishing his career as an Olympic and professional soccer player. Quite the “small world” moment! Packers won, 45-17.
Keith from Rockville, MD
At the historic American Colony Hotel in East Jerusalem in the middle of the night. Four of us were watching the game at my apartment and we lost satellite connection in the first quarter as an extremely rare blizzard (perfect Packers weather) hit the Holy Land. We had to drive through white-out conditions to get to the hotel and the night manager was nice enough to let us into an empty room to watch the game.
Jolee from De Pere, WI
Jan. 27, 1997, in Lusaka, Zambia, I worked with an NGO assisting the Ministry of Health with improvements in maternal-child care. I climbed three flights of unventilated stairs to an office with backup power for the computers and fans, happy that a colleague had brought in a TV so we could watch the Super Bowl during daytime. We turned off one computer, put that power back up on the TV, and got about our day with as few outside appointments as possible.
Michael from Morrison, IL
My brother was showing cattle at the 2005 World Beef Expo at State Fair Park in West Allis. Since the show went into Sunday, I had to find a place to watch the Packers-Bucs game. Thankfully, there was a vendor stand just outside one of the barns that happened to have a small 18-inch TV. I let my parents know where I would be, asked the vendor if I could hang out and watch the game, bought a brat, and didn’t leave for the next three hours.
Scott from Hiawatha, IA
I watched the 2010 playoff game against the Eagles poolside on the back of a cruise ship in the Caribbean on the big screen. It was a very fun game.
Dan from Northbrook, IL
My wife and I were doing some travel through Europe. We arrived in Budapest at an odd time (due to travel) and were famished. So, we stepped in a random bar for a bite, and lo and behold it was a Packers bar playing the game. We stayed and watched the whole thing. We were arriving in Budapest, traveling, and returning to Budapest to travel home. So, we changed thing around to watch the next Sunday’s game there too!
Jay from Wilmington, NC
I watched the 2018 Week 2 game vs. the Vikings on my cell phone from a hotel room in Songtan, South Korea. I had just arrived that day which includes about 24 hours of travel time between cars and planes. The longest flight is 14 hours. I didn’t get much sleep traveling and the game started at 2 a.m. local. What a crazy game! A horrible call caused a game-winning interception to be nullified and the game ended in an overtime tie. Very unsatisfying! Long recovery after no sleep. Can’t miss a game
David from Valdosta, GA
Monday, Dec. 7, 2010. My mom suffered complications from a gall bladder operation. My brother and I were able to be distracted in the waiting room with the game against the Ravens. It was touch and go, as I had to sign two DNRs that night. She fought so hard and survived both DNRs. She would pass almost a year later, but that night she showed so much strength and allowed her another year. There was no celebrating the Packers’ win, but the green and gold was a comfort in that storm.
Lori from Brookfield, WI
The most unusual place I have watched a Packers game was in my mind, in a car, in a dark campsite in northern Wisconsin. Our family was camping, and the game was on the radio. I was allowed to listen to the first half of the game. The radio calls made the game come alive in my mind. The second half was all in my imagination. I had to wait until the next day to discover the final score.
Helen from Hot Springs Village, AR
Most unusual place I watched a Packers game: Aboard a Princess Cruise Ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. That was the game Aaron broke his collarbone. I almost cried when I saw that. You guys do a great job. My hubby and I will be coming to Green Bay for the 5K run/walk in a couple of weeks. Looking forward to coming and seeing Lambeau again.
Kelly from Stoughton, WI
I have terrible international luck. In 2016, I was in Punta Cuna with some friends and of course the divisional round game was on. Some Vikings fan was chirping the whole game. Finally, my redemption came but it went much, much faster. And that is the time I was almost exiled from a resort in the DR. Also, during my honeymoon in Jamaica 10 years ago this September, I watched the first three quarters on a beach with a blowup screen only to wake up to the biggest FAIL in professional sports history, at least that was regular season.
David from Sheridan, WY
Strangest setting I watched a Packers game was in college. I was in my corner apartment, and it was a night game vs. the Seahawks. I walked into my room and noticed I could see a neighboring apartment had the game on and it was late in the fourth quarter, so I watched through my blinds (and theirs) and witnessed the Fail Mary catch, then I was glad nobody was around.
Gregg from Leland, MI
Jan. 27 1997, Super Bowl XXXI. I watched this game at the Tokyo American Club. While the game was played on the Jan. 26, in New Orleans, we we’re living in Japan, so it was a calendar date later. I proudly wore my cheese head to the early morning game watch and back home on the Tokyo subway. Even watched the evening replay at an American bar wearing the cheese head on the train that evening. Unforgettable!
Mike from Manitowoc, WI
In the barracks at Zweibrucken Air Base, Germany. This was during the Forrest Gregg Era and the Packers played the Cowboys under Tom Landry. When the game started, we all crammed into the day room to watch the game live. A couple other guys and I were rooting for the Pack. Well things didn’t go very well and by halftime I was the only Packers fan. They tried all game to get me to switch sides, but I didn’t! Appreciate what we have everyone!
Bob from Sun Prairie, WI
The most unique place I watched a Packer game was my first trip to Lambeau in 2003 with my dad. I was a star struck 7-year-old seeing a preseason game against the Titans when a thunderstorm stopped the game in the 1st quarter. When the game started up again at 11 p.m., we somehow made it up to the indoor fourth-floor box seats instead of our outdoor bowl seats. Years later, I head when Brett Favre found out about the weather delay, he got on a jet back to Mississippi and was home before play resumed. (Editor’s note: I was at that game, too. We stayed until the bitter, bitter end).
Stephen from Winchester, VA
Deployed on a US Navy guided missile cruiser in the Persian Gulf in the middle of the night after my watch was over while we kept losing signal because of maneuvering and the ship rocking from waves.
Dave from Muskego, WI
I watched Super Bowl XLV from an Aircraft Carrier conducting a major exercise off the East Coast. One of my cohorts was a huge Steelers fan and we watched it together wearing our respective jerseys. The best part (besides the Packers’ victory) was that another one of my other cohorts was a huge Bears fan. We had made a bet during the NFCCG that the loser would wear a winner’s jersey during the SB, so he had a good ol’ No. 12 on. It was even better than watching SB XXXI from Japan.
Jason from Austin, TX
Easy. The Packers’ NFC Divisional playoff game against the Cowboys in 2017. My daughter was born the day before the game, so we were still in the hospital. The whole day was a blur, including the game. We were new parents and were trying to figure out what our new life was going to look like, also surrounded by my wife’s parents and brother (huge Cowboys fan) who were visiting. I also got maybe two hours of sleep and just found out our daughter broke her collarbone during birth. I did see the throw, though!
Jarle from Bodø, Norway
In 2019, I was travelling for work on a Sunday in remote northern Norway. My housing had no Wi-Fi, and my included mobile data couldn’t carry me through the Packers-Cowboys game starting 1025 p.m. local time. My phone was luckily still connected to the Wi-Fi in the office where I had worked previously, but I didn’t have the keys yet. The solution for watching the game was thus to park as close to the office as possible and cheer for the Pack alone in my car in the snowy parking lot through the night!
Marcus from San Francisco, CA
I watched the Packers vs. Vikings 2004 Wild Card game (the Randy Moss moon game) outside on the deck of my fourth-floor apartment in Yamagata, Japan. It was snowing, so I attempted to recreate the Lambeau Field atmosphere. Disappointing result, but a memorable experience.
Jeff from Omaha, NE
I was deployed to Iraq in 2010-11 and watched our Super Bowl win over the Steelers in a large MWR tent at Ali AL Saleem Airbase in Kuwait. I had a TV in my room in Iraq but had to fly on a C-130 from Tallil to Forward Operating Base Garry Owen with a stopover in Kuwait. Halfway around the world I was still surrounded by Packers fans! GPG.
Bill from Fort Worth, TX
I remember watching the Packers playoff run from Balad Air Base, Iraq, culminating with me coming in to work on the night shift to be able to watch the Super Bowl on a big screen. I used to think being there saved me from blowing a ton of coin and sparing no expense to get to that game. Fast forward to the present, and I’m sparing no expense to see the Pack in London to celebrate my 50th. Hope to see you there! (Editor’s note: A special thanks to Bill and all our military veterans who submitted their stories. Thank you for your service).
Jim from St. Pete Beach, FL
More the experience, than the setting. The NFC Wild Card vs. Eagles in January 2011, surrounded by rabid Eagles fans the entire game, fearing for my life to the point of high-fiving people when the Eagles scored. When Tramon intercepted Michael Vick to seal the game, I couldn’t help screaming “Yes!!” at the top of my lungs. A fan three rows down turned around and yelled “Who said YES?” He was READY to draw blood. I looked around ignorantly. Escaped alive and happy with a W.
Wayne from Lake Hallie, WI
I was in Mountain View, CA, for business back in 1997 and found a Packers Bar in San Jose to watch the Packers play the Broncos. Being that far away from home, I had no idea what to expect but was amazed to see it full of other Packer fans well before game time. The atmosphere was incredible and everyone was so nice. It was like watching a game with 100 of your closest friends. Some drove five hours. Memories make us rich!
Sam from Janesville, WI
Last year vs. Arizona. It’s the time of year I go on an annual hunting/camping trip with my dad and because of the pandemic we called the previous year off. We decided to go in 2021. The first night it rained and couldn’t sit by the fire, so we stayed in the camper and played cribbage while listening to the game. Before the interception I said, “Either they catch, and we lose, or they don’t, and it goes to overtime with a kick.” I was wrong and I’ll never forget that night. Memories make us rich.
12. Who is your pick for the 2021-22 Insider Inbox MVP?
OK, now what you all have been waiting for. A word of thanks to Dean from Leavenworth, our 2020-21 MVP who served valiantly this past year. Thank you so much, Dean, for your poems, wit and wisdom. I also enjoyed Cameron from Grovetown, GA’s suggestion that we make special mention of our many international readers who submitted some of the best Inbox questions over the past year.
And with that, our second runner-up is…Al from Green Bay
Lori from Brookfield, WI
Al from Green Bay has submitted many great questions and should be considered for II MVP.
The first runner-up is…Derek from Eau Claire, WI
Dar from Mansfield, TX
If we had an All-Inbox team, I’d name Shannon from Ovilla, Doug from Neenah, Sal from Hailey, Jeffrey from Eveleth, UKers Neil and Col, Mike from NOLA, Thomas from Cedar Rapids, and the Lakewood Ranch consortium as this year’s best, with Paul from Ledgeview and TK from Grafton as newcomers to watch. But since I get but one vote, let me cast it this way:
Inbox Fan of the Year Haiku
Eau Claire’s wait is done.
To paraphrase Kevin Greene,
Derek, “It is time.”
(Editor’s note: Unfortunately, it’s not time yet. But your time is coming, Derek. I can feel it. The third ‘D’ will be a champion one day. As for the second ‘D’…)
And finally, as chosen by the readers, your 2021-22 Insider Inbox MVP is…Dar from Mansfield, TX
Margeaux from Tallahassee, FL
My dad once said, “That nothing good ever came out of Texas.” Grudgingly, I have to disagree. My dad would have laughed and said, “What do you mean, you never agreed with me on anything?” Dar from Mansfield, TX, gets my vote as II’s submitter of the year. He has taken II submissions where submissions have never gone before.
Shannon from Ovilla, TX
Dar from Mansfield, TX. How can it be anyone else? Congrats on repping the Texas II gang, Dar!!
Tim from St Louis, MO
Unless we wanting a repeat and not wanting someone who hasn’t been named II MVP, the most prestigious of MVPs, it has to be Dar from Mansfield, TX, right? Is it really a question?
Matt from Bloomington, IN
I had the honor of naming the Insider Inbox MVP last year, and in doing so I messed up by emailing in as Matthew instead of Matt from Bloomington, IN. If given the opportunity to name this year’s Inbox MVP, I’d go with a guy who once mistyped his own name on a submission: Dar from Mansfield, TX! Way to put in the work man!
There you have it. Congratulations, Dar, and welcome to the most prestigious group in all of sport. Lori, Margeaux, Dean and Dar truly have been pillars of the Insider Inbox for the six years and we’re grateful for each of them.
Additionally, I’m naming my first Outsider Inbox MVP. Much like the Super Bowl MVP, the Outsider Inbox MVP is a major award given to the reader who submits the most interesting and enthusiastic responses to the questions. The inaugural honor goes to Tim from St. Louis, MO. Congrats Tim. I honestly could have written an entire Outbox with each of your responses but there wasn’t space.
Thanks to everyone who participated over the past week. I consider Outsider Inbox to be the turning point to the next Packers season. I’ll be back Monday as Insider Inbox reverts to its usual format, as we begin our march towards the 2022 season. Have a great weekend, everyone!
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