Sad, pathetic past-times

November 6, 2006

The only thing more intellectually stunted than supporting a team in sport is nationalist pride. Well, perhaps not the only thing. Putting on your vehicle’s left indicator shortly before turning right, jumping off a bridge with a rubber band tied to your feet and voting for a Republican government backing “intelligent design” in the USA elections come to mind.

But supporting sports teams, especially ones 10,000 miles away is right up there.

xxx-tottenham-hotspur.gifNonetheless it is something I cannot drag myself away from because unlike other intellectual crimes like religion and government supporting a bunch of very wealthy complete strangers in a far away land is actually entertaining. Without lifting my (currently somewhat substantial) bottom off the couch I get to participate, scream and shout as a member of my own chosen tribe. And that is the out I allow myself. I chose them. I chose to support the only top football club I know of that at least purports to value great football over winning trophies. The fact that the fans, at least, consistently boo’d the only coach to bring us silverwear in the last 20 years because the side was dull to watch kind of bears that out.

So to see them, Tottehnam Hotspur, break a 16 year hoodoo to beat Chelsea, current Champions of the English premier League, and do it in style, has placed me in an excellent mood. The sky is more blue, the air is sweeter, the day is warmer and my lunch tastes better. To watch your team play another that cost over 200million in UK dosh to assemble and to, player for player, not wish you had a single of the opposition in your team was fantastic fun. I wish I knew someone who supported Chelsea so I could wind them up a little.

Supporting arbitrary sports teams is the male equivalent of female shopping (not to be confused, in any way, with male shopping). Whenever I make a disparaging comment on the subject of shopping to a girl friend I am always acutely aware of my own mental perversions forcing me to waste large sections of my life and, of course, controlling my mood.

I, sad as though it may seem, have seen almost every minute of every televised game in the last few years. Most of the time I end up racked with disappointment and sorrow. Or, if I am honest and lay aside exaggeration for just a moment or two: just a bit annoyed until I would get distracted by a charming piece of porn delivered right to my email box, an invitation to pop down to the local police station and pay my unpaid parking fines or a person making an unexpected right turn using their left indicator at the time. Presumably considering the flashing yellow lights on their car to be sort of joyful christmas decoration.

It comes earlier each year.


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