I have a friend in Phoenix who posted a photo of a huge billboard touting the 2015 Super Bowl.
When I commented on her post, I said I thought “Super Bowl” was a salad-making contest.
I was only half joking.
Some men bond around pro sports teams or NASCAR or outdoor recreational sports. Not me. I am the anti-hero of all things sports.
When I was executive editor at The Pocono Record in Stroudsburg, Pa., I would joke with the staff during high football season: “That’s the sport where they score baskets, right?”
They knew I was kidding (mostly) but they also knew that when it came to sports stories, be it wrestling, basketball, football, tennis, cross-country, swimming, etc., I had a million questions so I could better understand the rules and the significance of what was at stake.
It’s not that I hate sports; it’s just that I am indifferent to them.
I never engaged in a competitive athletic event in my life.
Dodge ball in gym class doesn’t count. And high school speech and debate club contests don’t qualify either. And chess club, though cutthroat, was hardly a contact sport.
(I did one afternoon in high school run in a Freshman Field Days event in which I ran a 200-yard dash, finishing well ahead of the other racers. Problem was that I quit where I thought the finish line was and it turned out it was still ahead of me, so instead of being first, I was dead last.)
I have huge admiration for athletes and their dedication and training and how hard they are willing to push their bodies for the sake of their passions (or a paycheck).
For instance, I can get interested in watching some of the winter Olympics, such as the skating or bobsledding competitions, which go by quickly and have a defined time limit.
Games that can drag on, like baseball, with sometimes little to show for it, tend to bore me. And other games I just don’t *get* in terms of the objectives or the rules.
Take American football, for instance. Downs. Rushing. Quarters. It’s all some foreign language that I don’t speak.
My wife has expressed gratitude more than once that I’m not one of those guys who is all wrapped up in sports. Yeah, it’s likely I will be watching an episode of “Downton Abbey” the night the Super Bowl is on.
That’s not to say that I’m a cultural snob or that I look down on sports fans. It’s just not my bag, which I guess makes me different from a lot of guys.
But just to show you that I’m not all indifferent to the Super Bowl, let me wish my favored team good luck.
Photographs by L.J. Thornton
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