Not a Sports Fan – Let Me Tell You Why

My wife will never have to put up with me having to watch ‘the game.’ Living in The State of Oklahoma, I’ve been asked countless times whether I’m a fan of OU or OSU. It seems that college football in this state is more of an institution than college education. The fact of the matter is that I’m far more likely to spend my time thinking about dirt than spectator sports. I have friends that love to follow the teams and the games, and that’s fine for them. I’d rather spend my time doing more constructive things. Sports idolize the most depraved individuals that our society has to offer. From a very young age, we are taught to worship these scumbags. Beyond that, the skills necessary to play sports don’t really have useful applications beyond the court or field. The skills necessary to sit on a couch and watch other people chase a ball are nil.

Even at a very young age, when we are taught that athletes are gods, I was not impressed. I remember the school pep-rallies in which they would parade these idols like Roman gladiators, and expect us to swoon. I found the whole thing to be a little insulting. Can you run? Can you throw a ball? Can you catch a ball? Then, you can play ball sports. At one pep rally for the school’s sports programs, they were singing the praises of the team, and my brother shouted out in the noise, “BLA, BLA, BLAAAAAAA!” The trouble is that the sound of the assembly stopped just as this crossed his lips. Once he started, he could not stop until he had gotten it out of his system, no matter how he may have wanted to. Every eye turned on him. He had to ‘talk’ to the coach about his outburst. I never heard him express a regret for his action. Did they ever hold pep rallies for the academic team in these houses of education? Not to my knowledge. At my junior high and high school, they never once held a pep rally to extol the achievements of the choir or the band – and those were people with precision skills. The music departments were very good when I was growing up. Our marching band came home with many trophies, as did our concert bands. The orchestra also won awards for their performances. The skill set of chasing a ball around a court or a field don’t even hold a candle to the precision and artistic expression necessary to play an instrumental solo, sing an aria, win a debate, or perform a scientific experiment.

I was in the band. My sophomore year, we didn’t go to many of the football games. The coach complained that it was hurting the morale of the team players to not have their band there to encourage them. So, my junior year, we went to every game. The football team didn’t win any that year. So the band, which was highly skilled in the art, and had brought home many awards from many contests – marching, ensemble, and solo – were expected to cater to the whims of some boys who couldn’t even throw a ball straight. The idea is sick and backwards. Comments were made that maybe we should put the cheerleaders on the field to see what would happen, or to even substitute the band members in for the football team. After all, we were good at something. Once or twice, we got in trouble for playing the school fight song in a slow, minor key like a funeral dirge after one such defeat. The trouble was worth it for the laughs. We were constantly getting in trouble for heckling the inept players. Maybe if they weren’t drunk every weekend, they would have been able to play ball.

The anomaly of spectator sports glorifies horrible people. I don’t know whether there’s more sociopathic corruption in a prison community, Congress, or in organized sports. We make gods out of murderers and thieves like O. J. Simpson. Even though they couldn’t nail him for killing his x-wife and her boyfriend, it seems that he was determined to make it to prison, one way or another. Although it is questionable whether he is a cold-blooded rapist or simply an adulturer, Kobe Bryant is not someone whom should be modeled after. It is highly regrettable that a lifestyle animal abuser like Michael Vick made it to the top the way he did. If he were a normal person, he’d still be rotting in prison right now. Responsible gun owners everywhere are still cringing at the illegal, ghetto activities of Plaxico Burress, not to mention his personal career of violence and domestic disturbance. By supporting them, we teach our children to disregard the laws of society, and natural laws which teach us to respect each other. Granted, there have been good athletes that don’t get nearly the press. Whatever happened to those like Johnny Unitas, who was certainly not without his faults, but was a generally good person in the game and in his personal life?

I’m also just way too active a person to really get into spectator sports. Jen and I don’t watch a whole lot of television, and would generally rather spend our time creating things, and honing skills. We are doers, not watchers. I fail to see the appeal of watching a bunch of men (or women for that matter) chase a ball on a screen. Frankly, my cat will chase a ball, and he’s a lot funnier when he does it. Plus, there’s the very activity and interaction of throwing the ball for the cat. I’m not opposed to throwing a ball myself, but don’t have any desire to watch someone else do it. The skills that it takes to throw a long pass, run, dribble a ball, or hit a ball with a bat can be trained and developed by any able-bodied individual. How is it so impressive that able-bodied individuals have the desire to watch others play the games? I can kind of understand some of the lesser-publicized sports such as gymnastics, diving, or greco-roman wrestling. In these sports there is art. It takes an able mind as well as an able body to excel in these.

So, I see absolutely no reason to waste my time and energy following spectator sports. If you do, good for you. Don’t try to push it on me. It’s been pushed on me for thirty years, and I simply don’t care a thing about it. I don’t really care who won the game last weekend and I don’t have a team that I cheer on. I don’t understand why it’s so important that they gave the Hymen award to Tivo, and I don’t really care, either. My big screen hasn’t been used for the Superbowl or any other bowls, for that matter. If you want to talk to me, tell me something about yourself, not about some guy that you’ve seen on television. I find that people are nearly always far more interesting than the people they idolize anyway. So, there you have it. Not a sports fan. So sorry.

UPDATE *cheesy telegraph sound*

Yeah, like this…

16 thoughts on “Not a Sports Fan – Let Me Tell You Why

  1. I’m not a sports fan at all either. I’d rather be out doing something rather than sit around all day drinking beer and watching the idiot box.

  2. I think pro sports athletes are just like the rest of the world. 95% do their job, help out around the house, do good stuff where they can and just live their lives. Then there’s the 5% that are a bunch of skid marks on the underwear of life (yes, you can use that) and should be either locked away or put down.

    I’m not a sports person but my brother got into the Coast Guard Academy on a football scholarship. It does take a lot of skill to play at that level and not everyone can do it. Kind of like the difference between Bruce Lee and myself – I practice martial arts, but Bruce Lee was BORN with it.

    So, while I agree with all your points I will not condemn them. Instead, on the high school level, I will condemn the administration that puts too much emphasis on a winning season and not enough on an academic season.

  3. Luv, if Wee-Bot got into football, kept up his grades, made practices, made the team and excelled, I would go to every game, and I would cheer for him. The BIG difference is that I would then have a vested interest in the sport. I have no problem with people playing football, only with watching football with no vested interest. I get worn out on people talking about ‘my team’ or ‘my boys’ when they are talking about people that they have no connection with whatsoever. If somebody started talking to me about the OU Sooners and how well they were doing, and in the process revealed that their son was the running back for the team, I would gain some level of interest. That is only because real people are more interesting than hypothetical people. Celebrities are not interesting – no matter what the forum. Real people are interesting. If someone can recount a story about a real person of notoriety, they now have my attention. If people talk to me about what happened on ESPN, not so much. When my co-workers talk about what happened this week on Big Brother, my eyes glaze over and I start thinking about girls. That’s just they way I am. So, if one day I found my son entrenched in playing football, it would get my full attention. In the meantime, my wife and son are in no danger of becoming sports widow and orphan. Period.

    Ins, I had a feeling you might weight in here, and I’m really glad you did. Please refer to my comment in response to Luv2Shoot above. I think it’s wonderful that your bro got in on a football scholarship. I think you are also right about the 95/5% split. The problem is that the 5% of s#!t-swill get the media attention, and that I cannot abide by. Nobody, and I mean nobody should be glorified to the point that they are beyond human. This is what happens to these athletes. They are no longer human, they are projected as gods. I’m damned good at running my shotgun, and I’m really good at running a keyboard (kybard, LOL!) or a workbook of intricate spreadsheets. Jen is a great accountant, but nobody wants to watch her do it. Nobody would tune in to a channel where I’m shown purchasing parts for a compressor, although I’ve performed sea-splitting miracles at my desk at one time or another (that’s going to be another blog entry altogether). Academically, sports are obscene. Sports have absolutely nothing to do with academics, and the separation ought to be almost as holy as the separation of church and state.

    You people got me on my soap-box again! 😛

  4. Musicians and actors are often put on that same pedastal as athletes are, and they can be some of the lamest people in society as well. Do you enjoy going to concerts or listening to your favorite musical group or watching movies? How is that any different? In most cases I would guess you don’t know those people either, but you still find their “thing” entertaining. It’s entertainment for a lot of people, to watch sports.

  5. Luv, the vast majority of actors are there for the sole reason of the entertainment of you and me. As Jen has said on multiple occasions, we don’t care what they think, we want to see them dance for us. As I’ve said, they are actors, we will tell them what to think, not the other way around. I do enjoy watching movies. But, I don’t really give a crap who is with who, or what they are doing this weekend. I will give a quick review on my blog of a recent movie that I’ve watched, but it’s not a major part of my life.

    Musicians are different. Most of those that wind up on the pedestal aren’t worth listening to in the first place, IMHO. Those that are, don’t wind up on the pedestal. Thus breaks your argument. Speaking of those that are listen-worthy and do in fact wind up in the limelight – they provide a soundtrack for MY life. I do not serve them, they won’t get away with anything in MY world as long as I’ve got some say in the matter. I love music. Many of my favorite musicians are dead. Their bodies of work are complete, and so can be analyzed and broken down into scientific and artistic chunks. Or, they can simply be appreciated for their substance over and over again.

    The bottom line is this: Running a ball from point A to point B is not as much of an art form as composing and/or performing something that nears perfection, no matter how good a run it is. What I enjoy is not really the question. The question is why do people appreciate that which is lower brow? If we can answer this question, we will unlock all the problems that currently face our world – solve injustice, world hunger, and poverty: all in one, fell swoop.

  6. Luv,

    “have friends that love to follow the teams and the games, and that’s fine for them.”

    “So, I see absolutely no reason to waste my time and energy following spectator sports. If you do, good for you.”

    “So, there you have it. Not a sports fan. So sorry.”

    On my old, blogspot address and admittedly not here yet (soon to be corrected) in rules:

    “5. Open Mindedness – This is for fun, people. I’m not trying to single-handedly change the world, or piss you off to no end. If you find an entry offensive, I would ask you to please re-read the post, give me the benefit of the doubt, and ask yourself if you might be taking it the wrong way prior to leaving some emotionally-charged comment. Please come and read, and have fun with me.”

    I have been explicitly clear that this website consists of my opinion. If something here is to be substantiated with other sources, I will have linked them. With your last point, you have only enforced mine on this subject. Luv2shoot, I enjoy your thoughts and opinions, and not in a ‘dance, monkey’ sort of way. I find you to be charming and… …well… …luvable in our shared forum. You are engaging and you have a wit about you that is charming and appreciable. I’ve met you and your husband in real life, and hope to have the pleasure again (hopefully in shooting with you.) I really don’t want to continue this particular argument. If you choose to pursue it, I will follow through, but I may not be happy about it.

    As I’ve said, if you enjoy the game or two, fine. I get sick at seeing people’s cars decked out in the team colors, with added badges and a vanity plate that identifies them with ‘their team’. That’s sick. I have no reason to construct my identity around something that has nothing to do with me – unless I invented it in the first place, hence the whole ‘Evyl Robot’ thing. Did Brian Bozworth put a stamp on society that will last forever, or did Johan Sebastian Bach? Bach was a freak, but he was an artist that produced work that will endure forever. There is no such thing as a virtuoso of sports. Not even if you consider Babe Ruth, Michael Jordan, or Johnny Unitas (who I admittedly do admire).

  7. lol, I wasn’t arguing with you at all. I have a musical history as well as an athletic history myself. I can see the fun and interest in both worlds.
    I just found your topic interesting enough to comment on, that’s all. No need to puff up at me.

  8. LOL! I didn’t mean to ‘puff up’ at you, and I hate that I came across that way. I’m glad you are here! Did I fail to mention that an Olympic recruiter once looked at a young and skinny, 114-lb Evyl Robot wrestler who showed some real promise? I did neglect that, actually. There IS fun and interest in both worlds.

    “I was in the band. My sophomore year, we didn’t go to many of the football games. The coach complained that it was hurting the morale of the team players to not have their band there to encourage them. So, my junior year, we went to every game. The football team didn’t win any that year. So the band, which was highly skilled in the art, and had brought home many awards from many contests – marching, ensemble, and solo – were expected to cater to the whims of some boys who couldn’t even throw a ball straight. The idea is sick and backwards.”

    I clearly have personal issues that have lead to my current opinion and view.

    The bottom line is that I don’t condone the worship of any man (as in mankind, not as in the gender), and I am appalled by the worship of organized sports athletes. I am similarly disgusted by the worship of any other people, whether they be actors or musicians or whatever. There have been times that I’ve felt discomfort at some of my online followers that I thought were getting a little close to that line. Fortunately, the current readers haven’t exhibited that kind of foolhardy allegiance, but it has happened in the past.

    We are each given our unique, god-like talents. That’s because we were created in the image of God Himself. Why should one attribute be honored over another, really? If you are good at playing cards, and only at playing cards, or if you have a Midas touch, and everything you come in contact with turns to gold… I think of it like this: If you took a copy of God, and shattered It, and spread the shards across the makeup of mankind, that’s about how people’s talents land. That doesn’t really add to the value of the person that they are. Therefore, LaFarve or whoever doesn’t deserve our obsession. Do give it to him is idolatry.

    Like I said in an earlier comment, there are things that I’ve done at work that are old-testament style miracles. But, it’s not me. I’ve prayed a few prayers that God has had the sense of humor to actually grant. One of which was when I prayed to be like Joseph in the workplace – that everything that I touched in my professional life would just work out seemingly by miracle. That’s happened. Unfortunately, I didn’t think about the troubles that Joseph went through, and I’m kind of thinking that those things may have been given to me as well, due to some of the problems that I’ve had with my work. I think that’s because I asked for things that were too specific, and not that the Will of God would be done. His Will doesn’t betray us ever, if we fully submit. But, like I said, that’s a post for another day, and veers a little off topic here.

    Luv, thanks for the great back-and-forth, and thanks for your opinions. Furthermore, thanks for giving me my 500th comment! You’ve brought up a couple of new things for me to talk about. Because of your comment being number 500, I wish for all of your shooty gear to be pink. 😉

  9. I do believe I’ve “happened” upon a blog that I might like to visit regularly. Being attracted to intelligence, complete sentences with punctuation :), debates delivered with politeness and thoroughness, I enjoyed reading the above post and comments and will look around some more when I have time.
    .-= Lolly´s last blog ..For You =-.

  10. After considering the question of “low brow” for a moment I think the answer comes down to this. We are a competitive as well as social creatures.

    Rooting for a sports team allows people to have a connection to a larger group and thus a sense of belonging that they wouldn’t have normally. When we were small town and village dwellers, we had a strong sense of community because we knew everyone in our town, or at least were acquainted with them.

    Now that we, as a culture, have moved up to large cities, that sense of community is diminished and so finding ways to connect with people on a social level is more difficult. Sports teams, actors, and politics give us the quick initial connections so that we can then connect with others and develop that sense of community.

    At least, that’s my theory, but what do I know I just make cartooons. 😀

  11. “The bottom line is that I don’t condone the worship of any man (as in mankind, not as in the gender), and I am appalled by the worship of organized sports athletes. I am similarly disgusted by the worship of any other people, whether they be actors or musicians or whatever.”

    ^I completely 100% agree with this.

    And wouldn’t the world be a prettier place if all my shooty gear were pink………… :)
    I’ll stop hogging your comments section now. Carry on….

  12. Welcome aboard, Lolly! It’s always great to see someone new around here.

    “Rooting for a sports team allows people to have a connection to a larger group and thus a sense of belonging that they wouldn’t have normally.”

    That actually makes sense – especially for someone who aspires to spend more time with his computer than live people. :-)

    “I’ll stop hogging your comments section now. Carry on….”

    No, your comments are always welcome! Bandwidth is cheap, and others’ thoughts are interesting.

  13. All right! Time for Yo Mama to weigh in here. Your comments are, as usual my son, right on target. However, you merely skirted, and did not actually hit on the crux of the matter, which is that sports in Oklahoma is the largest major religion. That’s what makes it disgusting. OU football did not create the universe. We are not made in the image of Bob Stoops (thank you, Lord), and the world would not cease to be if OU lost all their games this season. Much to the contrary, all you Sooner fans (short for “fanatic”). Let’s be fanatic about something (or Someone) that really matters, and just enjoy the things that Someone gives us! Like sports, or the arts, or gardening, or scintillating conversation. . .

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