# # Rah! Rah! Rah!

Brother, I Can See Your Skull.

Brother, I Can See Your Skull. - The Coreyshead Blog

Rah! Rah! Rah!

So, how about that Superbowl last weekend, eh?

What about that one play with the guy when he had the ball and it was like, wow? And that other one, where the guy got tackled? And that one call – WTF was the ref thinking? Well, at least that one team won. Unless you were rooting for the other team, the Cincinnati Bagels or whatever …

Okay, I admit it: I didn’t watch the Superbowl.

Actually, I’ve never watched any football game in its entirety. The closest I ever came to watching a game of football – and even caring about it – was in the 70’s when the Denver Broncos went to the Superbowl for the first time.

I was living in Colorado then and the state went bonkers. Everybody was wearing the team colors, which is really too bad because they’re friggin’ atrocious, and drinking Orange Crush soda because that was the nickname of the team’s offense. Or defense. Or steroid supplier – what do I know?

I was in grade school at the time and it was such a big deal that we actually spent a week on it in class. I’m sure we studied other things as well but I’d like to congratulate my teachers and the school administration for making such an impression upon me with that particular Superbowl that it’s the only thing I clearly remember learning about that year in school. Thanks.

I was the bane of my classmates because I refused to support the home team. I didn’t do it because I liked the Dallas Cowboys or thought that the Broncos were an inferior team, I did it to be a pain in the ass. I thought the whole thing was incredibly boring so, in order to flesh it out a bit, I made myself into a pariah.

Of course, I wasn’t supporting the Dallas Cowboys, either. I was openly ambivalent, which did even more to hurt my image with my classmates than supporting the “enemy” team would have. Had I supported the Dallas Cowboys, no matter the reason, I would have at least been semi-normal, at least managed to appear somewhat American. So much for that.

One thing we were supposed to do that week in class was design these orange bumper stickers in support of the Broncos and, instead writing “GO BRONCOS” or some variation thereof, as my classmates so dutifully did, I drew two crumpled players: one a Cowboy, one a Bronco, and, in between them, in bold letters: “Football = Stupid”.

It’s funny. I pulled this kind of crap all the time in grade school – refusing to support the home team, openly questioning the relevance of the curriculum, denying the existence of god, taking every opportunity, in other words, to loudly play the devil’s advocate – and then spent my jr high and high school years trying to figure out why I had so few friends and was roundly viewed as an obnoxious freak. Gee, I wonder …

Anyway, Superbowl mania was so pervasive, so persuasive that year, that even my family, whose idea of sports was collecting firewood, got into it. My brother and I, who weekly traded off the after-supper chores of clearing the table and doing the dishes, made a bet: If “your” team lost, you had to do the dishes AND clear the table for two weeks.
I, of course, supported the Dallas Cowboys.

We’d never had a football game on in our house before but, come that Sunday, on went the TV and everyone gathered around to watch. Instead of joining my family in the living room, I sat down at the dining room table, facing the TV, with a coloring book. My honest intention was to multi-task but I ended up simply coloring. Every once in a while, when I heard a family member hoot or groan, I’d look up from my work but the skirmishing, little, multi-colored nerds on the screen couldn’t rival the attraction for me of coloring in a scene from “The Planet of the Apes” or “I, Robot”.

In the end “my” team, the Dallas Cowboys, won.
People griped about it for a week or two with decreasing regularity until the memory faded away with just garish orange and blue bumperstickers and commemorative jackets to remind everyone that they’d backed the loser. I didn’t even manage to get my brother to uphold his end of the bet. I tried to call him on it but he had a very persuasive argument to support his position of non-compliance. It really wasn’t worth my teeth, I figured.

And that was it. That was my brush with watching football. I may have attended one of my high school’s games but, if I did, I can guarantee it was no more than an attempt to pick up chicks.

I have this vague memory of sitting in the bleachers one time but the only clear vision I have of this is that of the cheerleaders. I couldn’t believe our school, with such a rigorous dress policy that we weren’t allowed to wear shorts until my senior year, not only allowed but supported and encouraged the cheerleaders. Here were some of the prettiest girls in the school, good Christian girls, wearing miniskirts and jumping around, intentionally flashing their barely covered, wool-swaddled crotches. Huh, maybe there was something to all this sporty nonsense, after all.

While I’ve never really enjoyed being a spectator, I do enjoy participating in some athletic games. I like kickball, volleyball, basketball, wrestling, and more. It’s all a lot of fun as long as everyone understands that it’s a game; just a silly game.

The problem is that there are so many people for whom it isn’t just a game. They get all worked up. They get mean and nasty. All of a sudden here’s some big oaf – or little twerp! – who is seriously willing to hurt you just to make a point in a game between friends. This attitude was pervasive throughout school and made me hate not only watching sports but also participating in them and the people who were serious about either.

Further, I’m not terribly coordinated and my brother made sure I was head-shy by the time I got to the schoolyard. As far as I was concerned, a ball was a weapon and, if it was coming towards you, the wise thing to do was put up your arms and duck. The combination of these two facts guaranteed that I had to consider most sports a simple, friendly pastime and did not endear me to my more athletic schoolmates. It was, in short, a recipe for disaster that informed my view until I finally had a few positive experiences in high school and beyond.

The other day, a coworker asked me if I’d seen the Superbowl.
“Nope. I’m not really into sports.” I replied.
“Oh, really?” she asked. “I wouldn’t have guessed that.”
This made me feel pretty good and I was surprised to hear it. I’m not ashamed to be uninterested in sports but I don’t like the idea of being such an obvious dork.
“Really?” I asked.
She laughed: “I was being sarcastic!”
Oh. Oh, well.
“Yeah, I’ve never actually watched an entire football game,” I smiled.
“Really? Wow.” She stopped for a minute, thinking, then asked: “So … what did you do on Sunday afternoons, then, growing up?”

After church, she meant.

What indeed?

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3 Responses to “Rah! Rah! Rah!”

  1. Roger says:

    I have a long-standing tradition of avoiding the Superbowl every year.

    This year I spent it watching a marathon of How It’s Made on the Science Channel, masturbating furiously while I did so.

  2. cae says:

    Come again?

  3. hillsy says:

    Thanks to Roger…I now know how THAT’S made…

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