The Raiders lost
in overtime, 30-24, and I lost my bachelorhood two months later. The team heard
all about The Bet, and how the fate of a beautiful young lady had ridden on the
success or failure of a single forward pass. Dr. Bob was the blabbermouth. He
told me that by the end of the week, after he'd had a chance to leak the story,
the entire Raider football team felt personally responsible for the marriage
and considered the bizarre situation a good-luck omen for the rest of the
season. Red and I were married, just as I promised we would be, on
Thanksgiving. It wasn't that my honor was at stake as much as my mother's life
and the lives of my sister's children. I couldn't handle that kind of
But the story has
a very happy ending. For one thing, the Raiders went on to the Super Bowl. The
team invited Red to New Orleans for the game. They wanted her to be their Super
Bowl queen. We didn't go. We stayed home and watched on television. I'm from
Philadelphia, and I sort of wanted the Eagles to win. They didn't, which was
O.K., too, since the Raiders were responsible for our marriage—the best thing
that ever happened to me.
When the game was
over, we saw Al Davis tell us how happy he was the Raiders won, and there was
Dr. Bob standing behind Al's right shoulder, grinning from ear to ear like some
kind of damn fool. But this time he had a different sort of grin on his face,
one I couldn't quite explain.
said Red. "He's looking at us."