By BRANT JAMES
© St. Petersburg Times, published January 27, 2001
Clevelanders all around the United States will tune in to Super Bowl XXXV on Sunday just to boo when Baltimore Ravens owner Art Modell's image is flashed on the television screen. Natives of the city have made a habit -- some like comedian Drew Carey, a cottage industry -- of reminding the world of the evil deed Modell committed when he transplanted the Cleveland Browns to Baltimore in 1995.
But Carey and all those Clevelanders will just have to get along without the moral support of at least one of their own.
Florence Rulli, who moved to Spring Hill from Cleveland with her husband in 1986, not only doesn't share the venom toward the Ravens, she won't even be watching the game.
"I'll do something more interesting, like read or stand on my head or something," said the member of the Hernando County Ohio Club.
"I mean, it was shame and a dirty trick for Art Modell to move the team after all those years, but there are an awful lot more things for me to get upset about than that."
But deep down, does she have a preference?
"Just let the best man win," she said.
Mike Mitchell hopes that's the Giants, but his Super Bowl fever is far from red-hot. As proprietor of Pickle Tree Deli on Spring Hill Drive, and a father of two young children, the Queens native has confined his pre-game hype to reading the newspaper.
He's not had the time, he said, to think about how his team will play for a championship in nearby Tampa. And he doesn't have the will to pay for a super-expensive scalped ticket.
So Mitchell will just enjoy the Super Bowl from the living room.
"I think it's just better to sit at home and watch it on TV than to pay all that money and deal with traffic and people and everything," he said.
"When you have (children) that are 2 and 4, you don't get to do much anyway."