I watched the Civil War game on television yesterday. The first one all season. I'm not much of a sports fan. While I enjoy watching people with real talent display that talent, I usually get bored after 30 minutes or so and want something new. And I have a prejudice/issue with someone getting paid millions of dollars a year while my reality of job selection is more of the hourly kind of rate, implying clearly and loudly by society that what I contribute has much less value.
It's really quite crazy, if not downright disrespectfully ridiculous. What happened for us to allow "value" to become so extremely variable and categorized?
So back to it. I watched the game simply because I thought it would be kinda cool to see a local sports team go to the Rose Bowl. At first, my enthusiasm was quite high and yet I noticed something about my behavior that troubled me. I would boo the Duck's if they would score a touchdown. And I got caught up a few times in that frantic crowd behavior of jeers and hollers when the Beaver's would score.
I stopped myself and wondered "where is this coming from?" Is this authentic me or is this something more?
I thought back to Black Friday and the deplorable display by certain customer's at that Walmart Store back east, trampling that poor store clerk just to get inside and get a good deal.
Both my behavior and the behavior of the Walmart customer's seem to fall under the category of barbarian/solidly ego behavior where we just act and respond without thoughtful contemplation, focused on such things such as winner's and losers, who is right and who is wrong and me first me first.
It was then that I began to lose interest in the game. I watched it now and then for awhile, but my wild enthusiasm or whatever you want to call it was quieted. I began to look at the players as people. I began to appreciate the skill of the Duck's defense and how they simply played much better ball. When looking at it this way, through eyes of appreciation, while I still would have preferred at the time the Beaver's to win and felt a little sadness when they lost (I always feel empathy for the losing team no matter who it is), I enjoyed the experience more and most importantly, I felt in control of my reactions.
And ok, I gotta admit: I was grateful for the loss if only because we did not have to be subject to the loud obnoxious disrespectful cat calls and screams of drunk college students at all hours of the night and morning. Mayor Tomlinson says college student's don't cause any real problem in this community. He may come live in my neighborhood for a month and/or speak with some of the local officers who have told me calls to 911 increase sharply once the students return to get a clearer perspective. But that's a subject for another post, another day.
Bottom line: Sports is not the issue. It's human behavior that is. While we share some things with our animal friends, we're different in our own way. We were given a frontal cortex for a reason. Let us use it more.