With the replacements being benched now that the regular officials are back, I was able to secure an interview with one of the newly retired replacements.
Here is the interview, which really took place except no it didn’t:
Bernie: It seems y’all had trouble understanding the rules out there.
Replacement: Who said that? I hear a voice. PENALTY!
Bernie: Uh, no, I’m over here. You’re looking the wrong way.
Replacement: Oh, OK. Oh, hi, who are you?
Bernie: The guy who has been interviewing you. May we continue?
Replacement: OK, but make it quick. I’ve got a reporter interviewing me soon.
Bernie: That’s me, you idiot! That’s what we’re doing.
Replacement: That’s right. My mistake. Boy have I had to say that a lot lately.
Bernie: Are there some rules that are confusing to you?
Replacement: Yes, when someone kicks it through the goal posts, how many points is that worth?
Bernie: One if it’s an extra-point and three if it’s a field goal.
Replacement: Do those numbers go up, depending on how many runners are on base?
Replacement: And is it three points if you shoot it from behind the three-point line?
Bernie: Oh, my. Let’s just move on to another issue: that controversial offside call you made last weekend.
Replacement: The guy clearly had crossed the line of scrimmage before the ball was snapped.
Bernie: But the guy was another official. You can’t throw a flag on him for that.
Replacement: Flags? People are throwing Old Glory? Why, that’s downright unpatriotic!
Bernie: OK, different topic: the penalty you threw on the team for having too many players on the field.
Replacement: Surely you didn’t have a problem with that. There must have been 40 of them out there at once.
Bernie: Yes, there were 40 on the field. Warming up. It was still 45 minutes before kickoff.
Replacement: What is this “kickoff” of which you speak?
Bernie: You know, when they kick it to start a game.
Replacement: Hold it — that’s legal? That explains why the coach was so mad when I issued that 412-yard penalty.
Bernie: 412 yards? There’s only 100 yards on the field.
Replacement: I found that out. You should have seen the look on those tailgaters’ faces behind the stadium when I marked the ball in the middle of their grill. Pretty good burgers, though.
Bernie: What will it be like, watching games from your living room again?
Replacement: I really look forward to it. Those preseason games were fun to officiate, though. When does the real season start?