BUFFALO GROVE - Donna Peterson has struggled with her son's drug use over the past two years. On Sunday, she set up an intervention with a counselor, her husband, and several family members.
"It hasn't been just one thing," said the matriarch of the Peterson family. "It's been booze, pills, more booze...it's starting to disrupt the family.
However, what would start as an intense family discussion...would slowly unravel into NFL-watching bliss.
Kenny Peterson, Donna and Jeffrey's 19 year old son, has lived at home since dropping out of college last year. When Kenny entered his family's living room, he noticed his counselor, his siblings, and his parents...so Kenny decided to do what he always does when he gets home: turn on the TV.
"You guys can talk all you want about this crap, I ain't listening," said the disgruntled youth. "Scott Hanson and I got a date...and y'all ain't invited."
Kenny's counselor tried to dissuade him from ignoring his family's help. Kenny sat silently watching the NFL RedZone channel; which was now featuring a live look-in from the Patriots/Cardinals game.
With most of the family feeling helpless, the situation grew dimmer when Kenny's father Jeffrey noticed a change in the program.
"Wait...they're showing two live games at once?" asked the confused father. "These are live?! No commercials?! How long have I had this??"
"Dude, I've been sittin' down here blowin' bongs every Sunday while you've been at those stupid chorus recitals with mom. This dude, this Hanson guy, he lays it down...shows every game from all over the NFL. Whenever somebody's in the red zone, they switch to that game. If multiple games are on, they'll go to two boxes...or a 'double box' if you will."
Shortly thereafter, three games had teams in the red zone. This prompted the NFL RedZone network to go to a rarely used 'triple box'.
"What?!" remarked Kenny's sister Wendy. "They've got three games at once? Wait, why did the Pats try to go off-tackle there, dear God the Browns are b---Oooh! Touchdown Panthers! This is awesome!"
A frazzled Mrs. Peterson tried to restore order.
"Kenny, we're here for you...to talk about your problem...not to talk about football. We're really hurt by how you've been acting lately. We found you passed out on the-"
Donna Peterson was interrupted by her family's reaction to a big play in the Giants/Bucs matchup.
"Hey, Donna...can we do this...like on Tuesday? This is pretty sweet," said Jeffrey Peterson; Kenny's father.
"This is life or death! Don't you guys understand this?! Any day now, you could be dead from an overdose...a car crash...some laced drugs...you need to listen to what we have to say, Kenny! You're destroying the family! You're...wait, what the---"
Glowing from the television was the rarely seen 'Quad Box'. Four games happening simultaneously on the television. Each with teams in the red zone.
"Mom...it's okay...it's just the power of the Quad Box. Sit down...remember this moment. Remember this moment for as long as you live."
Mesmerized by the sheer beauty of the moment, Donna Peterson sat in amazement at the spectacle before her.
"This is life changing," said the awestruck mother.
On the screen, Bengals/Browns, Cardinals/Patriots, Saints/Panthers, and Ravens/Eagles controlled the family.
"Should I...just come back on...Tuesday?" asked the family's uncomfortable counselor.
The family, sucked in by the sensory overload, nodded with barely an expression.
With the counselor out of the room, Donna and her son enjoyed a tender moment.
"What did we do before this Red Zone thing...I can't even remember," said Donna.
"We lived a life filled with little meaning...and no quad boxes," said Kenny.
The family spent the rest of the day eating popcorn and awaiting the next quad box.
Kenny's intervention is scheduled for 7 p.m. Tuesday evening.