Ah, but when everyone hates you - the gift Gregg Williams left the Crescent City - this bands you together closer. Every Saint will walk out onto the field with a scarlet letter on his jersey; this shame will translate into a determination unmatched since Tom Arnold tried to win back Roseanne's heart in the summer of '94.
Sure, the team is head-coach-challenged at the moment: Sean Payton, suspended for the season, was replaced by Joe Vitt, who was suspended for the first six games and replaced by some guy who doesn't even have a headset.
Still - though I have no inside information - I firmly believe Payton will be coaching the Saints every weekend and most weekdays.
What, you think he's going to be at Ikea Sundays shopping for rattan chairs?
If you believe Payton is going to have zero contact with his team, I've got some luxury condos in Mexico backed by Donald Trump I'd like to show you. Osama bin Laden ran al-Qaeda for years out of a mountain cave in Afghanistan with two cans and a string, a fax machine and a basic cable package; with today's technology, Payton could be calling plays from the Curiosity rover on Mars.
So trust me, we're looking at the first-ever Teams of Destiny Super Bowl between the Broncos and the Saints. I'll have an EXACT FINAL SCORE for you a week before the game.
Ask The Slouch
Q. Are the Washington Nationals' Zimmerman boys - Ryan and Jordan - the first successful brother teammates since Frank and Brooks Robinson? (Mitchell Shapiro; Rockville, Md.)
A. Neither Ryan Zimmerman and Jordan Zimmermann nor Frank and Brooks Robinson are brothers. But your errant inquiry reminded me of baseball's foremost sibling teammates, the Alou boys - Felipe, Matty, Jesus and Boog.
Q. Why are today's superior conditioned athletes immediately put on the disabled list for six to eight weeks every time they fall down? (Ed Shade; Hurricane)
A. And every time they do take a tumble, they land on their wallets, which should break the fall.
Q. If the Mayan calendar were another two feet in diameter, do you think it would say anything about the Houston Astros winning the World Series? (Ray Bohannon; Katy, Tex.)
A. Pay the man, Shirley.
You, too, can enter the $1.25 Ask The Slouch Cash Giveaway. Just e-mail asktheslo...@aol.com and, if your question is used, you win $1.25 in cash!