Courier Life’s

The oracle of Sheepshead Bay

Ida’s picking the divisional championships with no fear

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The NFL playoffs are a time of surprisingly subdued emotion in the house of Eisenstein. Our pigskin princess shuts off her RSS feed linking her with the Caribbean and ceases regular communication with her human contacts there.

She puts away the old ’78s of Benny More, and eats a porridge made from red rice and cardamom for breakfast, lunch, and dinner every day.

Those who know her refrain from asking her about the games — especially those based around a ball shaped like a prolate spheroid.

Ida does not mourn the loss of any team, especially not her own — for as you, dear reader, probably know, our air-mail amazon has seen far greater stakes than the small metal trophy a bunch of grown men in tights give their limbs for on American fields every winter.

Still, she knows that these contests hold a certain importance, perhaps more potent on the account of their heavy symbolism.

In these times, Ida burns some incense and remembers the Buddha, who says, “It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand battles.”

Ida’s picks:

49ers (−3.5) over Falcons

“Nobody’s going very far with a leader who calls themselves ‘Matty Ice’ ”

Ravens (9) over Patriots

“The Ravens are a mean, mean team.”

Ida’s record:

Regular season: 110–122–7

Kryptonite: 6–10.

Playoffs: 6–2

Reach reporter Eli Rosenberg at or by calling (718) 260-2531. Follow him at

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