About a year and a half ago, Matthew Stafford appeared in a Monday Night Football commercial in which he donned a so-ugly-it's-awesome airbrushed T-shirt of himself.
The commercial was so popular among Detroit Lions fans that they actually put that shirt up for sale on the Lions' official store. However, they charged a whopping $45 dollars for it, and it is unfortunately not currently available in stores.
But fear not, my feline compatriots. Because CVS has stepped up to the plate and knocked the eyesore ball out of the park.
Just take a moment to let that entire picture soak in. I'll wait.
Now that you've no doubt traveled to every CVS within a 50-mile radius searching for this gem (don't bother looking online; I've already checked), let's break down what makes this T-shirt such an amazing spectacle.
The color scheme
Seattle Seahawks Detroit Lions quarterback is slathered in dark blue, while random blotches of green from a barely noticeable football field surround his frame. Adjacent to Stafford's left shoulder is a green splat that resembles a football shape, but has enough ambiguity that you're not really sure if it's a football or a magic-eye trick.
My favorite color mix-up is the strange greenish-grey streak running through the word BALL. There's no apparent reason for this, and it doesn't match any Lions scheme, but it's there because Microsoft Word's WordArt is neat.
Throw in some white circles that look like a firework display when I'm not wearing my glasses and some orange lines because LASERS, and you've got yourself a befuddling, awesome mess.
"9 Ball. Rocket in the Pocket." Is it a pool reference? If so, I have a few questions. First and foremost: why? Secondly, is "rocket in the pocket" really a pool term? Obviously a pool table has pockets, but what would "rocket in the pocket" really mean in a pool game. I've only heard that phrase used by some hooligans in a locker room who also promised me gum. I'M STILL WAITING FOR THAT GUM, JOHNNY!
"Rocket in the Pocket" alone would make for a pretty solid tagline for Stafford, because he's got a rocket arm and he doesn't know how to leave the pocket. But with the strange inclusion of the words "9 Ball" you're left with a weird, mixed metaphor. It makes no sense, therefore it is great.
The desperate need to fill up space
Forget what position Stafford plays? Look no further than his right armpit. QB. He's the QB.
The obvious avoidance of using any NFL copyrighted material
It won't take long to notice that there is not a single Lions or NFL logo in sight here. But the folks at CVS tried to slyly sneak by that fact. Notice the very Lions-like font for the "9" and the "Matt Staf_ord." (Could they not write his full name for copyright reasons, too? God, I hope so.) Also, the jersey has almost no resemblance to an actual Lions jersey. The color is wrong, the number is not in the correct font and it's clearly missing any tear stains.
DEAR GOD, WHAT IS HAPPENING TO HIS HANDS?
WAS HIS TIME AS A LION SIMPLY A FIGMENT OF OUR IMAGINATION, SLOWLY BEING WHISKED AWAY BY THE WIND? HAS THIS ALL BEEN A DREAM? IS IT STILL 2008, AND WE ARE BEDRIDDEN SINCE THE LIONS BECAME THE WORST TEAM IN HISTORY AND MATTHEW STAFFORD IS JUST A CREATION OF OURS USED TO COPE WITH THE INFINITE PAIN THAT MAY LESSEN OVER TIME BUT WILL NEVER TRULY GO AWAY UNTIL THE LIONS WIN A SUPER BOWL, WHICH PROBABLY WILL NOT HAPPEN BEFORE THE LEAGUE IS FORCED TO SHUT DOWN DUE TO THE HARM IT IS PUTTING ON THE PLAYERS?
No? It's just some weird, unnecessary graphic design? Oh. Cool.
Unfortunately, I live in Los Angeles. So my hopes and dreams of owning this magnificent artifact will go unfulfilled. But, Dear Lions Reader, please take advantage of this opportunity. Our precious time on this Earth is short, and moments like this don't come around very often. Buy me this shirt.