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Mother Educates Us About The History of Footballs

Mom: I do have some little investigation that I did on footballs. I'm like, why did a football get its shape like that? 
Interviewer: You're going deep.
Mom: The shape of it is actually, I read, is a prolate spheroid.  And that when they fumble it people shouldn't try to pick it up, because when it falls it's just going to bounce, so they should just try to fall on the ball. Not grab it, because it's tough to grab.
Interviewer: Okay.
Mom: You know they call it a pigskin. But it's not really a pigskin. Before rubber was invented they were made of pig bladders. You might not want to hear this because you're a pig lover. [laughs] Right? 
Interviewer: Yeah, I like pigs.
Mom: I mean, you won't even eat any pigs, so how can you play with a football? You and Kath better stop throwing that football around. Anyway, it used to be funny because these pig bladder footballs, they were being inflated. There was a little thing they would blow up during the game if it got deflated. So, they were real iffy. It was never the same. Maybe that's what the Patriots, maybe they're putting in some pig bladder footballs. 
Interviewer: Interesting. 
Mom: That was interesting. Then they became leather. And they were stitched with laces. Now the laces are only there to help guys grab the ball. And then in the 1800s, the bladders were very difficult to inflate, so that's why, they had problems. Now there's a standard shape and weight, supposedly. And it's a rubber bladder surrounded by a pebble grade leather of a cow. Yeah. A cow. 
Interviewer: Pebble grade? 
Mom: You know how it looks like little pebbles? I don't know how they get the pebbles in there, so don't ask. Maybe the cow comes with pebble grade, laying around the pebbles. Or maybe they put the pebbles. I don't know. Anyway, since 1955, every NFL football has been made by Wilson. 
Interviewer: Oh wow. 
Mom: In Ada, A-D-A, Ohio. Dad's giving me a look, questioning. You know him, Doubting Thomas. [to Dad] I read it. Oh... [back to phone] Dad thinks Spaulding used to make footballs for the AFC. 
Interviewer: Does he know that for sure? 
Mom: [to Dad] Do you know that for sure? [to phone] No. Okay. So, Wilson in Ada, Ohio makes 4,000 footballs a day. And, warning. Put warning for cow lovers not to read this. 
Mom: You know how many... one cow can make how many footballs? Take a guess. 
Interviewer: I would say 10 footballs. 
Mom: You are right. [to Dad] No. You'll have to read it to find out. [to phone] Yeah, 10 footballs for one cow. I wonder what they do with the cow bladder. 
Interviewer: I don't know. 
Mom: Dad applied for a job at Wilson. [to Dad] You applied to Ada, Ohio? [to phone] No, he applied in Monee. So you wouldn't have been making footballs? Well, that has nothing to do with it except the name. Oh, they use every part of the... The other thing, so, it's a rubber bladder surrounded by this leather. The other thing is cows in high school footballs, they have white lines around the ends of the football. You know, on the corner of the sphere. In professional, they don't. In high school, the white line goes all the way around, and in college it's just in the front of it. You know why? 
Interviewer: Why is that? 
Mom: Why do you think? 
Interviewer: I don't have an answer. 
Mom: Because of night games, so they can see the football. Maybe in college it just goes halfway around because they only have half as many night games. 
Interviewer: Interesting. 
Mom: Did you hear what I said?
Interviewer: Yeah, that in college it goes halfway around because they have half as many night games. 
Mom: Maybe I said. Not really. So that's all. More education than anything. I like to educate.
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