You know, with yesterday being SuperBowl Sunday, I had another perfect opportunity to apply my new outlook on watching sporting events. It’s an outlook I developed quite inadvertently, without giving it any active conscious thought, a view on things that just sort of developed all on its own, and was fully in place before I even knew that I possessed it. I think it has to do partially at least with all the moving around I’ve done in my life, making the concept of a home-town kind of foreign to me. I was also athletic all my life, playing baseball, football, soccer, basketball, volleyball, and broomball, in organized leagues, as well as bowling 5-pin at the semi-pro level. Add to this a true love for the intricacies of sports of all kinds, as well as a true appreciation of the skill and training required of anyone who wishes to excel in these events, and then stir in a very strong pacifistic nature, and it almost makes sense that I would end up having NO favorite teams whatsoever.
Now the weird thing is, I believe I’ve been like this most of my life, right down to when I was still small enough to be at home, and if you’ve read enough of my pages, you’ll remember that I left a pretty uncomfortable home situation when I was about 10 or 11. At home, it made sense, because if someone asked me who my favorite team was, the answer was easy, it was the same team favored by whoever asked me. I wasn’t dumb enough to get punched out for picking the wrong team. Lol. But even after leaving home, I usually just blew that question off, or picked whichever team seemed most likely to create the most fun. You could always get a rise out of the guys here in Vancouver by picking any team from Winnipeg, and if you did it at the arena, you might even get into a good-natured food-throwing match. I came home from a hockey game one day covered in so much beer, my wife thought I had taken up the life of a lush.
But I have to tell you, I really do think I enjoy sporting events way more than any of my friends who have favorite teams that they’re so crazy about, and I think the whole idea of having favorite teams might even take away from the enjoyment of sports in general. I enjoy every great pass or catch, amazing goal, or save, made by any player on either side, and never have to waste my energy on explaining why the guy didn’t deserve it, one way or the other. I’m just thrilled by the incredible athletic performances of every person on the playing surface, and I have twice as many reasons to cheer as the average person sitting beside me who spends half the game complaining about how what he just saw occur with his own eyes, didn’t really happen. And then he misses the next three plays while he frets and fumes, and tries to explain to anyone who will listen, how the referee, who was just a couple feet away from the play, didn’t see what this guy saw from 600 yards away in the bleachers after consuming 6 beer in 20 minutes. But don’t worry my friend, I love you, you’re better than any half-time show ever made, and I get to see you live, free of charge.
So what brought this up today was that I was making a comment on one of the Blogs that I love to read, and it occurred to me that my comment would actually make a decent post if I just expanded it a bit. And I really do think it’s kind of important, because if we can teach our children that a great play is still a great play, even if the player who made it happens to be wearing a jersey that might be made up of colors other than those of your “favorite” team, then maybe this attitude could begin to carry on into other things in life, such as appreciating another person’s viewpoint, even if that person happens to be flying a flag on his lawn that doesn’t quite match the flag on your lawn. Who knows where things might go from there? After all, with just a little bit of understanding, all kinds of good things have been known to happen. Anyway, I was just thinking, and maybe I just think too much. Or maybe I don’t.