Posted by Dell
I thought about entitling this what the Hell is wrong with me but I don’t like to get too dramatic. Even so, there is something wrong with me. I just don’t seem to see things the same way as other people do. For instance, just before I sat down to write this I turned the channel to a movie channel to listen to movies while I work. Pathetic, I know, but I do it every night. The T.V. Is behind me, so I have to turn to see it. So, I don’t. I just listen. But, sometimes it’s so good that I do turn to watch for a second and I’m usually disappointed. Well, tonight I turned the channel and there was a sports show just ending, and one of the commentators turned to the screen and Said “We want to thank you for tuning in.”
“Really,” I asked?
He didn’t say anything. I guess we would all be surprised if he did. But, I continued… “I didn’t tune in. I hate your show! I wouldn’t watch it if you paid me.” He did seem to flinch a little at that but the T.V. Went to commercial with no further incident… Not that there could have been one. I’m just saying…
Anyway, my point is, I do not like sports the way other men do. Several times in my life other men have stopped and looked at me like…. “Whoaaa, what’s up with this dude.” or “Did you play with dolls when you were a kid?” I learned early in my life that it is unmanly to say you do not like sports, or hint it, or not know the answer to a sports question. It’s just not allowed. Since I was young I had to go along with it, even, so I couldn’t always keep up the facade. Occasionally someone would trip me up…
“So, what did you think of Babe Ruth?”
“Oh… Babe Ruth… It’s a damn good candy bar,” I answered.
He looked at me funny and I knew I screwed something up, but, eventually he laughed, I went home and asked my little Brother who Babe Ruth was, a hockey player? (My brother is a Hockey fanatic) “Sure… Sure… A hockey player,” my little brother tells me. That was payback for all the mean things I had done to him.
As I got older I’d pick a little and ask guys why they didn’t just give both teams a ball and send them home, I mean, wasn’t the point to get the ball? And didn’t they seem to take an awful long time to get it? And wouldn’t it be easier to just give them a frigging ball of their own? Wouldn’t it. That didn’t win me any points, and then, in ninth grade, I decided to not major in smoking behind the school that year and I took Home Economics instead.
My life as a social outcast was short-lived though. I got kicked out of Home economics and went back to majoring in smoking behind the school. Then, voilà, it hit me. Maybe not liking sports was… was… I couldn’t make the connection though. I had probably burned out too many brain cells smoking joints behind the school instead of cigarettes. Too bad, if I could have only made the connection I may have been able to see that real men need sports in their lives as much as they need to fart and burp… (Some men, not all men.). And sports lends a well-rounded social adaptation you just can’t get any other way. I remember so many times at work some guy would say… “So, what do you think about those Dodgers?” And I would say, “Oh… Well they ought to go to jail…(Then, because it’s manly to swear and cuss), Frigging A! They ought to, those bastards!” Another potential social connection missed. Another opportunity to be a success in society missed.
At an early age I did decide to make a concession. I decided that I would watch Stock Car Racing. That was a sport. That would be my sport! It would solve everything. But no. Footballers, Baseballers, All those other ballers (It’s all games where you play with balls, right? … I’m just saying…) they don’t all believe that stock car racing is a real sport… What? So, I had managed to like the one sport that wasn’t really a sport. What was wrong with me? I just didn’t know.
As I grew up I realized that I had to be honest with myself about my shortcomings when it came to sports if I ever hoped to break the cycle of failure and societal exclusion. My whole life was in ruin. Virtual ruin. So I sat down and examined it and realized that I was uncomfortable with the games. I paid attention, I took notes, and I realized that I had some prejudices and hangups concerning the way the game was played. And, I plain didn’t understand the rules. So I took a closer look at them. And wrote down the ones that really confused me:
#1. Did you pat the other guy on the ass after he made a basket/home run/touchdown or before?
#2. Did you grab your junk whenever you wanted to or only when people were watching?
#3. Did you cry only in a strong emotional circumstance like your coach retiring, or could you cry if you just had a bad day, or the dog crapped on your new carpet?
#4. If you patted a guy on the ass more than once did that mean you had to buy him dinner?
I learned these are not questions you ask other men.
So, I tried to figure these questions out on my own after watching my sport for a while, but I only became more confused.
In NASCAR, nobody pats anyone on the ass. I’ve seen dozens of finishes and never once have I seen the other drivers run up and pat the winner on the ass. Not Once. There are no balls to play with. None. The drivers never grab their junk in front of the cameras, and if anyone cries, why one of the other drivers will just beat him up! Even the women drivers don’t cry, and I’m pretty sure they don’t play with dolls either.
After much thought I decided these things:
#1. I’m not patting any guy on the Ass whether it’s a game or not, and if one pats me on the Ass there’s going to be trouble.
#2. I will only grab my junk when no one’s watching.
#3. If I feel an urge to cry I will remind myself that it could be worse. I could be a footballer and some sweaty, three hundred pound guy could be patting me on the ass all the time…