Via Traces of Texas, on Facebook:
"Dandy" Don Meredith, quarterback for the Dallas Cowboys, talks to reporters in the locker room following the famous "Ice Bowl" game against the Packers in Green Bay, Wisconsin, back in 1967. The game-time temperature at Lambeau Field was about −15 °F (−26 °C), with an average wind chill around −48 °F (−44 °C). It remains one of the most famous games in NFL history."
Yes, that is a cigarette he is smoking. And yes, that is real hair on his chest.
"[Bob] Lilly, A TCU graduate out of West Texas, unfamiliar with such brutal weather, suffered frostbitten fingers on his left hand in that game. His three mates on the defensive line that anchored Tom Landry's effective but quirky "Flex Defense" all suffered frostbite as well. ...
"They might have worn gloves but Lilly recalled that old-school defensive coordinator Ernie Stautner admonished that such a luxury was for "sissies" and he couldn't have such coddled players on his squad. ...
"While players cautiously tried to navigate a sheet of ice underfoot, an announced assembly of 50,861 fans exhaled from behind faces covered by woolen masks, emitting enough carbon dioxide to remind of London fog.
"Please, Ryan said under his breath, let those of his cameras that refused to die in the cold, continue to work. The crew's remarkable work in those conditions provides the only known extended video from the game. "
"Once the game began, referee Norm Schachter and his officiating crew abandoned their whistles, which froze to their lips soon after kickoff. Instead, they relied on voices and hand signals to control the game. An elderly fan in the stands suffered hypothermia and died. Alicia Landry, wife of the Cowboys coach, is said to have missed the game's decisive play because her eyelashes were frozen shut. ..."
But Don Meredith had the final insight into why the Dallas Cowboys of Old played the way they played: not for the money, or their coaches, but for their fans:
"Meredith, of course, was on the plane that returned the Cowboys to Love Field in the wake of the Ice Bowl.
"I remember the pilot telling us he got word that there were a lot of people waiting for us," recalled Brandt. "We didn't know what to expect."
News reports estimated about 500 sympathetic fans were there to embrace their heroes in relatively balmly 32-degree weather.
"It was the first time Cowboys fans celebrated a loss," Meredith, who died in 2010, once told Michael. "It changed everything about the way we felt about our fans. It created a bond that would never be broken."
Go read the whole article: "Too Cold to Bleed: Why The Ice Bowl Still Resonates 50 Years Later".
It's the stuff America ... and real football... is made of.