The Internet, sports radio and most of ESPN’s 47 cable channels have been crackling with excitement ever since Brett Favre recently suggested he might come out of retirement for the second time in as many years.

The three-time MVP ended his 16-year career with the Green Bay Packers in March 2008 at a press conference he organized by sobbing, “I know I can play, but I don’t think I want to. And that’s really what it comes down to.”

He waited a whole 121 days for his tears to dry before popping up as reliably as a herpes sore in the news with reports he had expressed interest in playing football professionally again, ultimately saying he had “never fully committed to retiring.”

His first comeback ended last December with a nearly impeccable 9-7 playoff-less season with the New York Jets, followed shortly thereafter by another retirement announcement in February. It took just 120 days this time for the word to spread that he’s thinking about playing once more.

While it’s unknown if Favre cried this winter when announcing his retirement, sports fans everywhere wept for his dignity this spring when they got wind of yet another possible comeback.

Since then the outpouring of support for him has been unwavering, with some coming from unexpected places. Barbra Streisand reportedly sent the one-time quarterback great a bouquet of flowers and a Hallmark card that read, “Retirement Schmirement. From one I-don’t-know-how-to-quit-while-I’m-ahead addict to another, [expletive deleted] ‘em! Please join me in laughing all the way to the bank.”

And she knows from whence she speaks, having made her annual pilgrimage out of retirement in April with a televised concert special on CBS. While the ratings were dismal, Streisand wasn’t discouraged, e-mailing her friends, “I just got my check and I’m buying another island, bitches!”

Also sending his well wishes to Favre is the guy from the 1980s with the pants so big they could easily hold all the mean-spirited laughter the mere sight of them evoked — MC Hammer. He’s poised for a comeback this year, too, with a new reality show on A&E about his attempt to “relaunch the Hammer empire.”

Hammer’s biggest concern is that his pop-rap street cred might be tarnished if word gets out that he’s been married to the same woman for 24 years, so he’s decided to not discuss publicly the fact that all six of his kids have the same mother until after he somehow manages to get back on the road paved with lots and lots of gold-rimmed glasses.

Gary Busey is said to have offered a thumbs up to Favre, too. He’s been mulling trying to fight his way out of involuntary retirement so that the tens of fans who’ve been clamoring for him to reprise whatever it is he did that made him famous enough to become un-famous afterward will have something new to rent next year at the $1 DVD machines at McDonald’s.

But Favre’s now-annual retirements/un-retirements have inspired more than just people to dust themselves off and come out of the closet again.

Encouraged by Favre’s bravery, Earring Magic Ken, the Barbie companion doll that debuted in 1993 with a purple mesh T-shirt and matching leather vest, earring and chrome necklace, is expected back on toy store shelves this Christmas in California. While Mattel discontinued Earring Magic Ken during its inaugural year, the company has now decided to produce the line again, thinking there’s no one better to support the sanctity of opposite-sex marriage than the poster boy for heterosexual monogamy. It’s unknown whether Favre’s Packers and/or Jets’ mesh jerseys will be available as part of Ken’s wardrobe in a show of solidarity.

And, it’s Favre’s can-do (again and again) attitude without fear of humiliation that emboldened the Ford Motor Co. to reveal the stunning news that they plan to unveil a 2010 Edsel.

While the 1957 Edsel was known as “The Titanic of Automobiles,” executive chairman William Clay Ford Jr. stated in a press release, “If Brett Favre can still get people to buy what he’s selling after what he keeps putting them through, then there’s no reason why this car can’t be a comeback for the ages.”

Look for the new Edsel in show rooms this August. And should his football comeback not pan out, Ford has extended an invitation to Brett Favre to sell them.

E-mail questions or comments to meredithccarroll@hotmail.com.