Man, sports are really great. I know that a lot of people think sports are stupid and, on the other side of the spectrum, a lot of people take sports way too seriously but, man, when you’re right in the middle of that, you’re doing great.
I’ll start by addressing why people usually DON’T like sports.
First, the thing people usually hate about sports is that it’s so arbitrary. And that you’re basically watching adults play a game and getting either upset or happy about it.
I agree that when you boil it down to that, sports are very silly. But so is LITERALLY every other form of entertainment (except music MAYBE) (MUSIC effects the cerebral part of your brain in a way that warrants a whole other big chunk of WRITING).
So on the other side of the coin from sports, what are movies? Watching Tom Hanks act like he’s a sea captain, or whatever the fuck. And, yeh, movies are telling a story of human experience (which is Very important) but when you think about it: you can just read the story. It’s kind of embarrassing that we need Tom Hanks to ACT OUT that story. It’s so silly that we need Tom Hanks to act like a sea captain to realize how cool and important that story is.
Really, all things that we like are embarrassing when we think about them because human experience is so arbitrary. What I love about sports is that it has, SEEMINGLY, gotten rid of the scripted-NESS of entertainment, and it is real, honest to goodness, competition. It’s one person/team vs. another person/team and that is pure and, as far as you can throw it, HONEST. I love it!
I feel like I was really ragging on Tom Hanks back there. I LOVE watching Tom Hanks and other good movie stars DO THEIR THING. Telling a story in multiple different ways (novel, movie, tv series, etc.) is so important and beautiful and great to watch because it gives us a perspective on our lives and what we value as a CULTURE. But so is playing games competitively because its HONEST and we work very hard to keep it that way.
But also, don’t act like watching The Revenant makes you more thoughtful or beautiful than watching the NFL Divisional round Playoffs. It’s the same bullshit. We’re all waiting to die, arbitrary is in the eye of the beholder, and identifying with your hometown, where you grew up and shared principles in terms of how its appropriate to dress or eat is IMPORTANT.
I am a CINCINNATI fan and that means something. My girlfriend is a San Francisco fan and that is important and unique and COOL to consider when talking about her identity.
If it didn’t matter where I grew up I would have very little connection to the people who I grew up with and that’s pretty sad, honestly. I don’t want that. I want to stay connected to where I came from and bring that to the community I live in NOW and sports is a very digestible way to do that.
Sports are important for our culture. As is movies and music and tv shows and whatever else reaches into your deep core of FEELING and EFFECTS it.
FOR REFERENCE, I PERSONALLY SAY: Go UC BEARCATS, CINCINNATI REDS, and CINCINNATI BENGALS. One day, one of these teams will win a championship and I’ll be happy for a full day of my life. SO it will be all worth it.