Anyone who took high school American History class will recall that, at one point during the early years of the young Republic, there was a time known as the “Era of Good Feelings.” It was a period that began shortly after the end of the War of 1812 and lasted for about a decade, spanning virtually the entire administration of President James Monroe. It was never entirely clear why Americans had good feelings, much less why an entire historical era bore that tantalizing name, but we learned about it just the same.
I’m in my own personal era of good feelings — brought about by Ohio State’s titanic victory in the first-ever college football playoff National Championship Game — and I’m trying to make it linger for as long as possible.
My primary method of extending this modern “Era of Good Feeling” has been avoiding any news or interaction that might torpedo my mood. Since virtually all news these days is off-putting, that means paying no attention to news web sites or irritants like the Grammys ceremony, and instead watching and rewatching the three crucial games in the Buckeyes’ march to immortality — the Big Ten Championship game, the Sugar Bowl, and the National Championship Game. I’ve watched them each multiple times, to the point where my lovely wife is starting to wonder how in the hell I can watch the same broadcast again and again. So, I’ve tried to be a bit more surreptitious in getting my fix, watching shorter, edited versions of the games when Kish is out of the house. I still enjoy them, anyway.
In American history, the Era of Good Feeling ended when James Monroe’s second term ended, multiple members of his Cabinet and other figures all tried to grab for the presidential brass ring, and a divided four-way election was acrimoniously decided by the House of Representatives amid charges of corruption. I know that my Era of Good Feelings inevitably will end, too — but it’s been fun while it’s lasted. In the meantime, have you seen this nifty 16-minute collection of plays from the Big Ten Championship Game?