Philadelphia--Brett Favre and the Vikings were looking for something to do during their extended stay in the City of Brotherly Love this past weekend, unexpected free time that resulted from the postponement of their game against the Eagles on Sunday due to a heavy snow storm.
There were several suggestions made to the 53 players and many coaches staying in a Center City hotel, including visiting the Yuengling Brewery in Pottsville, Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Franklin Institute, the International Button Museum, Independence Seaport Museum, City Hall, the Masonic Temple, the Shoelace Museum, the American Swedish Historical Museum and, finally, the Mutter Museum.
With so many players and such varied interests, the team decided to split into groups and explore the city's multitude of cultural offerings. At least, that was the near unanimously approved plan.
"I stood up and shouted 'no' during the team meeting," said Favre, who did not play in last night's game because of lingering concussion symptoms. "This is probably the end of my career and I wanted the team to do something together, as one unit. And I wanted them to do what I wanted to do."
The list of attractions didn't much spark interest from Favre, but he wanted clarification about one destination. "The last one that was mentioned, the, uh, Mutter something. What is that all about?"
The hospitality guide assigned to the Vikings by the Greater Philadelphia Board of Tourism and Marketing described the Mutter Museum for the grizzled veteran: "It is a medical history museum filled to the brim with medical oddities collected over time and from around the world. In a word, it is unbelievably freaky."
Favre was instantly sold on the College of Physicians' museum. So that's how it would be, the entire Vikings team was to visit the cramped Mutter Museum on 22nd St and Chestnut St, a short walk from their lodgings.
One of the prize pieces of the collection, and first to greet visitors, is the remains of a horned individual from the early 1800's known as "Horned Steve," a condition, medical historians believe, resulting from a large forehead calcium deposit. Doctors did note that had Steve ever been beheaded, the horn would have made carrying the severed noggin "quite easy."
Favre, and most of the team, were blown away by what they saw. Several Vikings had to step outside to gather themselves, after feeling light headed, before resuming the tour, while others were forced to return to the hotel early.
"I was so impressed with the museum that right there on the spot I offered to donate my ego after I leave this earth," said Favre, his eyes misting over. "I wasn't sure what to do with my ego after I die, but I found a home for it today. This is a special day for me and my family."
"This is terrific," said Gale Summersby, director of the museum and grinning from ear to ear. "Not only is Brett leaving his unusually gigantic ego to our wonderful museum collection, but he is also donating the requisite funds to construct a new wing that will house the ego ... and only the ego. Mr Favre, I salute you and your ego."
Favre did say that he was saddened by the thought of his ego not being able to forever rest in Wisconsin, Minnesota or Mississippi somewhere, but he felt this was a great fit.
"Doctors and medical students from around the world will now be able to come to Philadelphia and study my ego up close," said the Mississippi native. "I feel like I'm doing a great thing for society. Yeah, a real great thing for society."
Notes: The American Swedish Historical Museum, the oldest in the country, reported record attendance this past weekend with the Minnesota Vikings in town. Thousands of Vikings fans flocked to the museum near 20th St and Pattison Ave in South Philadelphia. "We thought the number of visitors would increase somewhat with all the Swedish ancestry in Minnesota, but we had know idea that we would shatter attendance records," said Lovisa Bjornberg, the museum's curator...The Eagles are looking to donate Ikea furniture that was either confiscated at the stadium's entryways or left behind in the parking lot of Lincoln Financial Field following tailgating on Tuesday night by Vikings fans. Nonprofits should contact the team if interested in the variety of items, which include karlstads, kivics, hovas, a tullsta and several poangs.