I’m a (casual) Broncos fan, these days. I grew up loving basketball and baseball–played both and collected cards and literally prayed in front of TV sets for many a game. Then, one day, a mentor said “I no longer watch sports. I looked at how much time I was spending each week watching sports instead of being of benefit and it just didn’t add up.” Around that time, my teams had been winning like crazy so it was easy to be bored with success, so I let go. Also, sports have become about the 1%–huge salaries, jerkoff owners, stadiums renamed after insurance companies, ticket prices ridiculously high…the essential sports that I love are to be found on a high school or minor league ballfield, or in playing them myself, not in the NFL MLB or NBA, so much.
Sure, I still enjoy watching a game. But for all my friends talking about how depressing the Big Game was, yesterday, all I gotta say is Manning and Company are crying into their cash, today. They woke up before the game filthy rich, most of ’em, and went to bed filthy rich. The owners, even more so, by far. (Many players, the less famous ones, have short, brutal careers and are exploited, and soon broke, and often injured for life)
You know what’s depressing? Single moms who can’t pay the rent. Fur factories. Where you bacon comes from. Syria. The bed of a heroin addict. That’s depressing. Sports losses aren’t depressing.
They’re modern myths, unfurling live. Sports are beautiful. But the money that’s calcified around the sports isn’t beautiful. The attention that we put into sports isn’t beautiful. Sports are meant to be something we participate in, or relax watching. They aren’t meant to be a distraction from the fact that Congress just cut $800 million fucking food stamps from our poorest parents and children (most of them, ironically, Republican). They aren’t meant to be a distraction from the fact that we’re actively torturing millions of animals, killing dolphins…and doing the same to our fellow human being. Did you know more slaves exist now than at any time in history? Sure, our population is far greater. But I’d like to see a sport devoted to improving the world, and making that fun, and making that epic, and making that a participatory act in improving our society. That’s a sport I’d fucking watch, participate in, and get depressed over if it went badly.
This week, on Fox Sports, Denver and Seattle compete to organize Habitats for Humanity for families in New Jersey! Pass me the fucking chips.