With today being Superbowl Sunday, I have to admit that sporting events such as this, or specifically the human behavior related to sporting events such as this, completely baffle me. The last football game I watched from beginning to end was from the bleachers at my high school in 1976. The only reason I could be found at that game was the fact I was a member of the Manzano High School Marching Band, and one of our obligations was to show up at the games and make a lot of noise.
I hesitate to call what I produced from my horn during those games “music.” Nobody cared about quality, they just wanted loud. There wasn’t even much marching involved. If it was a home game, we’d get out on the field and do the obligatory show while all the died-in-the-wool football fans were in the toilet, buying hot dogs, or retrieving something they forgot from their car. The only people watching the band were the long-suffering band parents who’d most likely showed up just for half-time and would be leaving after helping to disassemble and pack up all the “pit” equipment.
I enjoy watching the Superbowl commercials, even if I don’t catch them during the Superbowl. Most of them are available on YouTube these days, and it gives the Morning Shows something to talk about the week prior.
I ride the Superbowl wave in other ways as well—last week Costco was in sample overdrive with their Superbowl fare. Without ever having to attend a party or buy a single bag of chips, I enjoyed a literal smorgasbord of wings, fried mozzarella sticks, mini-quiche and other unhealthy but delicious snacks.
I somehow managed to find and marry a man who has the same disdain for televised sporting events. While all of his buddies are gathering today eat too much junk food, drink too much beer, and yell and cheer at men they’ve never met on a two-dimensional screen, he’s doing his usual weekend puttering, knocking things off the “Honey-do” list, which is contributing vastly to marital harmony.
The only thing I can think of more boring than football, is watching golf on TV. You don’t even get the cheering crowd effect, just a commentator speaking in hushed tones, and some poor cameraman doing his best to following the trajectory of a tiny white ball while it flies towards a slightly larger tiny hole in the ground.
If I was going to become a fan of sports on TV, it would have to be something that has an interesting aspect like the fights at hockey games, or the falls with ice skating. Heck, even soccer became interesting last week in Egypt when all the fans stormed the field and proceeded to riot, killing over seventy people and injuring hundreds more while the riot police stood benignly by, watching the whole thing unfold.
What causes otherwise sane and law-abiding citizens to commit such heinous acts is completely, totally beyond me. The news reported that it was caused by “their team” losing the game. First, the team doesn’t belong to them. Just because that’s the team they want to win the game, doesn’t make it their team. It ain’t personal folks. In fact, its a game. Its just a game.
And the insanity doesn’t end with professional sports. I’ve seen behavior from parents at Little League games that is beyond appalling. What could possibly be so important about a six year old’s ball game that justifies parents getting into a fistfight. People have been seriously maimed and even killed during these altercations. And my friends wonder why I despise this sort of thing and refuse to become involved.
While doing a Psychiatric rotation during my nurse’s training I remember learning that there was always a large influx of battered women at the shelters on Tuesday mornings. They even had a name for it back then: “Monday Night Football Syndrome.” Seems the guys would get tanked up on beer and testosterone during the game, and release all the pent-up frustrations by beating the crap out of their wives and kids. Yes, what a noble pastime.
But I guess its all justified because there is a lot of money made by various people and organizations. The team owners, the concessions and of course the many millions paid to the players. These guys are often uneducated, with their only claim to fame a gift for athletics. The teachers who are molding and shaping the next generation of children, however, are making salaries barely above the poverty level, at least here in New Mexico.
Yep, today’s just another Sunday as far as I’m concerned. Gonna get some stuff done around the house, and then enjoy an evening with close friends.