Sports are a fantastic escape from the daily grind of real life. And leaving sports as an escape is where it should end. Sometimes sports imitate real life, and we all breathe the same air, but there is always a dividing line between that world, and the real world that we walk in. Still, it still doesn’t prevent the spread of some truly lame-brain credos and adages from infesting the population. Here are but a few silly things that really stick in my craw:
Winning forgives all transgressions.
This one is my favourite. And by “favourite”, I mean “the one that most makes me want to set myself on fire”. Dog killer Michael Vick and sexual assault expert Ben Roethlisberger have somehow managed to shed, or gloss over their very sketchy (and in Vick’s case, convicted criminal) pasts. Yet there’s no shortage of fans and media trying to sell us on the idea that winning is the same thing as redemption. As if a Super Bowl ring, or All-Star performance means that the horrible things they did no longer count. That being the king of the mountain in their sport means that they’ve toppled their demons and deserve everyone’s admiration again. I wonder if the dogs that Vick killed, or the women that “Big Ben” (ahem, allegedly) assaulted feel the same way? Unlikely. No, winning despite a shady past doesn’t mean anything other than they’re still gifted athletes that got another chance simply because they’re talented. Would we forgive Bernie Madoff if he made a donation to charity, no matter how large the donation was? Somehow I doubt that would go over any better than a lead balloon would.
Revenge for a playoff defeat
This one also kills me, but it only makes me want to drink bleach, instead of setting myself ablaze. When two teams meet in the playoffs, one team walks away the winner, while the other goes home battered and bruised. Inevitably, those teams will face each other again in the following year’s regular season where the stakes are far almost always much lower. Still, pre-game hype builds up the game as some kind of rubber match, and the loser of the previous season’s game as a team hellbent on revenge. I’m sorry, but that team would forfeit the regular season game if it meant that they could go back in time and emerge victorious in the previous year’s playoff match.
One from the NHL Lockout Handbook.
This would apply to all lockouts in any sport since the whining all sounds the same, but the whole “fans are victims” business is sleep inducing. Spare me. The victims are the ones who’s livelihood is affected; the ushers, the people selling concessions behind the counters, local stores and restaurants. Your (or mine) TV viewing habits being impacted doesn’t count as a hardship. Get another hobby, and find another reason to blitz your liver with alcohol. Yes, I get it. You love hockey. Maybe more than anything in the world. I love hockey, too (why would this blog exist if I didn’t?) Still, our lives will not change whether hockey is played or not. So get off the twitter therapy couch, pick up a book, find another TV show, build a puzzle, walk your dog, punch yourself in the face, whatever it takes. Just stop crying over the fact that there’s no NHL hockey being played.
Do you have a sports notion that makes you nuts? Can anyone explain to me why these silly thoughts are as accepted as they are? Please?