>>> Three Beers Deep
By staff writer Chris Phelan

April 4, 2007

Hey everybody, thanks for clicking on Three Beers Deep this week. As usual, I’m here to rock your world in ways other writers just can’t. I mean, I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but I’m pretty much the total package.

I’m a supreme athlete. (I totally just threw a crumpled-up paper ball into the trash can NO-LOOK STYLE. I swear.)

I’m easy on the eyes. (And proudly the only male writer on PIC to have a happy smiling headshot.)

And most importantly, I’m funny. To prove this point, I will pass along a great joke I heard from this girl at work.

What do you do when you see a space man?

(Wait for it…)

You park in it… man.

I’m pretty sure if you tell that joke out loud in person to a pretty girl or guy, it’s pretty much insta-laid. Just make sure youtake a long pause in between “you park in it” and “man.” Then give them a few seconds to get it. Then proceed with sexing the crap out of them.

Needless to say I am pretty hammered drunk writing this introduction. Good thing I finished the rest of this thing earlier or else we’d be in some trouble. Anyway, so without further drunken introduction-ing, here is what we in the comedy writing business like to call “the cock and balls” of the column: the main part.

The Madden-ing Crowd

My roommate and I get along great. We’ve known each other for a while now, so we complement each other pretty well. I credit our relationship to the fact that we understand and accept every stupid thing about each other. He understands, for example, that I need to take in approximately twenty hours a day of internet poker and Taking Back Sunday in order to function. And in turn, I understand that the guy just loves to sing in the shower.

“I am starting to become intrigued by only winning via shady glitches and lucky penalties.”

What he doesn’t know is that each time he showers I promptly stop what I’m doing to listen to another sub-par performance of “Hot Hits of the 90s.” Unfortunately, his set list is pretty slim, consisting of only one song.

(I’ve always wondered: what could possibly be running through his mind while he’s doing his thing in the shower? Is he preparing for the moment when a beautiful girl will smash through the bathroom door in her never-ending search to have sex with a guy singing badly in the shower?)

But I digress—I understand that everybody has their own habits and everything. However, there are some idiosyncrasies that defy conventional logic.

If there’s one thing I think my roommate values more than life itself, it’s continuously proving himself to the Madden football gods.

(A note to my female readers: this is where you realize you’ve stumbled upon a column about a video game.

Let me put it this way: if wives were video game accessories, he’d have been arrested for spousal abuse a long time ago and there’d be a movie based around the sheer brutality of it all. Now don’t get me wrong, he is by far the better Madden player between the two of us (to put it confusingly: if we put Madden talent on the same pedestal as comedy writing, I would be the Gaudio to his Phelan). But hey, I get my fair share of wins, and usually by some dubious means. I’m talking a mystery fumble or a phantom pass interference call. Maybe I’ve just got a flair for the dramatic, but even I am starting to become intrigued by only winning via shady glitches and lucky penalties.

It’s not the fact that he flips out if he loses a tight game, it’s just the way he goes about it. It usually goes something like this: mumbles to himself, throws the controller down, punches the wall, then flips a couch upside down (where it is invariably left in a perpetual upside-down state for the next few days because hey, we’re a lazy group of kids).

I mean, holy crap, I’ve seen drug addicts going through withdrawal in better moods than my roommate after a Madden loss. It’s times like those when I’m glad we don’t have a knife-collecting hobby.

I really don’t know what it is about Madden and college. I’ve seen the look of calm collectedness on my roommate’s face when he tells me he just aced his last exam, and I’ve seen the look of pure joy and child-like happiness on his face as he replays the last few seconds of a Madden game to me in the air with his hands, like a SportsCenter anchor on crack or something. I mean, if I’m in my room and I hear “CHRIS, HOLY SHIT COME DOWN HERE YOU WON’T BELIEVE THIS,” I know in my heart that it is nothing more than a great play he’s about to replay for me—but I run into the living room anyway and then we proceed to celebrate as only two Madden junkies can.

(A note to my female readers: sorry for subjecting you to this video game/football/male-bonding topic of discussion. However, if any of you are reading this and thinking, “Wow I can totally relate!” and you’ve got an absolutely rockin’ body, please send a photo and flirty email to [email protected] and I will proceed with the whole falling-in-love-with-you thing.)

But somehow, my roommate isn’t the only one suffering from this insane need to play Madden—and live, breathe, and die by it—on a daily basis. You see, Madden-itis has been running rampant for years and we all know a loved one who’s been affected by it. So what we need to do is simple.

We need to realize that one of these days we will all fall victim to a Madden-fueled attack by our roommates. This, my friends, is inevitable. And with this realization, we need to prepare. Eventually, they’re going to run out of controllers to smash. I, for one, have completely accepted the fact that my roommate will slay me in my sleep after a tough Madden loss one of these nights. But I’m okay with it, seeing as how I’ll never have to listen to another shower crooning of Aerosmith’s “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing.”