Thursday, January 21, 2010

Sports: Why We Watch

Would someone please explain to me why people become so interested in sports? I really have a hard time understanding it. I admit that I do become excited over some things. After all who couldn't help but enjoy watching Michael Phelps win all those gold medals?

But a football or basketball game? I couldn't care less. OK that's a slight exaggeration. I can become interested, but it doesn't hold my attention enough to watch sports on a regular basis.

Perhaps it's because I've grown up in home that doesn't watch sports. Maybe it's my personality type.

What is the big attraction? Is it the sense of community? When you're in a stadium cheering with the thousands of other spectators it must breed a sense of unity.

However, I think it's a combination of things.

Everyone likes superheros, even if they don't read graphic novels. For some people it's historical figures, Churchill, William Wallace, Mother Teresa etc. Then you have those people who get labeled as losers because their biggest heroes don't actually exist outside of comic books.

Logically then, affinity for a given sports team is just another example of hero worship.

Though I don't think so myself, many people find sports exciting. It's a situation in which one doesn't know the outcome. There are no life altering consequences for the loss of a sports team. When the patriots lost the Superbowl, their fans were upset, but it wasn't the end of the world....for most of them.

Sports permits the observe to delve into a world where their real problems are obscured by the struggles of another. The victory belongs to the fans and players in equal parts. The fans are the heartbeat of the sport. They breath life into mere games.

No matter how many times a team loses, they always come out to play again. They are a constant in a reality rife with turmoil. Everyone needs a constant.

Anyway, that's what I believe. But who I'm I to commentate?

Thanks for reading



  1. Do you write? I think for people who play sports, watching games is a lot like reading a book is to a writer. You get to marvel at how great they are at it, wish you could be like that, and perfect your own talent by watching pros.

    ~Kendra :)

  2. I write, but with neither the love nor the talent which is bestowed upon such artists as Hemmingway and Twain(goodness I sound conceited).

    I do understand what you mean. I find myself wishing I had half the talent of the authors I read. It's a beautiful thing to see a master at work.
    So then it's bit of hero worship on my part then hey?