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Your other entertainment options Feb. 5

This year's Super Bowl, which pairs the East Rutherford Giants against the Foxborough Patriots, should be a pretty big deal in Killington - Vermonters tend to cheer for the Pats, but there are also a huge number of folks with ties to New York and New Jersey sporting Giants gear. So most of you will be having fun on Sunday, at least until the end of the game, at which point only half of you, presumably, will still be having fun.

For the rest of us, though, - the Jets fans, the Eagles fans, the Redskins fans- we who have already suffered through one February matchup of these thoroughly unlikable, overexposed teams and just can't bear to watch Tom Brady or Eli Manning win another championship - here, for easy reference, are some of the other fabulous television programs that will be airing between 6 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Feb. 5:

•    "Law & Order" (6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 p.m. on TNT): Never forget that, no matter how lonely you are, no matter how desperate you are, no matter what time it is or what's happening in the world, there will always be an episode of "Law & Order" somewhere on TV to keep you company.

•    "The Wedding Dress" (6 p.m. on the Hallmark Channel): An obscure made-for-TV romance about a possibly cursed wedding dress, starring Neil Patrick Harris during those long melancholy years between "Doogie Howser" and "Harold and Kumar." I couldn't find any professional reviews (except one in German), but an IMDb critic points out that "the dog's acting seemed fine."

•    "The Wedding Date" (6:15 p.m. on TBS): That movie where Debra Messing has to hire a male prostitute in order to accompany her to her sister's wedding, lest she be left dateless. We've all been there, girl.

•    "Teen Mom 2" (6, 7, 8, 9 and 10 p.m. on MTV): Watch as MTV rewards and exploits yet another set of adolescents for their carelessness and ignorance.

•    "Spy Kids 3: Game Over" (6 p.m. on Cartoon Network): Sylvester Stallone plays a computer-programming genius - a casting decision no doubt on par, in terms of strangeness, with that movie where John Wayne played Genghis Khan.

•    "America's Funniest Home Videos" (7 and 8 p.m. on ABC): Somehow YouTube has yet to put this show out of business.

•    "Home Improvement" (7, 7:30, 8 and 8:30 on TV Land): They're showing the one where Jill gets the flu on Super Bowl Sunday, and she tries to convince Tim to spend the day taking care of her instead of watching the game with his buddies. Am I wrong, or was she being super domineering and passive-aggressive in that episode? The world doesn't stop turning just because you have a fever, lady. (Yes, missing a Superbowl is a comparable travesty to some guys.)

•    "Garfield: A Tail of Two Kitties" (8 p.m. on the CW): Find out how, exactly, one tail belongs to two kitties. Are they conjoined? I don't remember that from the comic strip. Starring Bill Murray, based on the Dickens novel.

•    "NFL GameDay StatZone" (6:30 p.m. on NFL Network): This handy program will give you scores, statistics, and live commentary on all the NFL games occurring between 6:30 p.m. and 10 p.m. on Feb. 5.

Believe it or not, I am a big football fan, yet I've actually skipped two Super Bowls already: XXXVII (Buccaneers vs. Raiders, 2003) and XXXVIII (Patriots vs. Panthers, 2004). After watching the Eagles lose in person each year at the NFC Championship Game, I was too heartbroken to look at a pigskin again until the following autumn.

When I do watch the game, I watch it, inevitably, with a sour taste in my mouth: is there anything fun, actually, about watching another franchise achieve the ultimate triumph that, of course, should really belong to your own team? Super Bowl Sunday is supposed to be the ultimate day of football, but unless your squad is involved, it's more like the ultimate football day for casual fans - those who sit back and enjoy the spectacle in the same way that casual movie fans enjoy the Academy Awards. Whereas serious cinephiles watch in fury and disbelief.

Ultimately, the Super Bowl is most of all a reminder of just how pointless our football obsessions are. After five months of watching, analyzing and dreaming about the possibilities - five months where any glorious thing can happen - we see it all whittled down to two random, lucky teams who, for all the pomp and circumstance surrounding their matchup, finally play a game that, just like any other, tends to be decided by a few random, lucky breaks here and there - a game whose outcome doesn't seem any more destined or meaningful than any other game's. It seems silly that the whole season should ride on these arbitrary 60 minutes. The winners celebrate, and then, next year, a new team wins, and they celebrate just the same, with the same trophy, holding it up as though they were the first people ever to do so.

Are you going to watch? Everything else on TV is a rerun, but then again, so is this year's Super Bowl.

Tagged: Super Bowl, Gen Y