Saturday, November 01, 2008

Do you care who wins ?

It's Saturday morning and I'm just having breakfast and watching a little footy. Arsenal aren't on until later, so I'm not glued, but immediately was interested in the game being shown because it was 0-0 between two middle-of-the-pack teams in the second half. So I'm watching enjoying the ebb and flow that the game is renowned for. And I'm enjoying the attacks by both teams. I don't really have a preference on who wins this one, so I can simply enjoy the game.

I've always questioned a business friend of mine who is a big sports fan but doesn't support our local teams. It seems he really doesn't have many favourites at all in sport. I always feel that people like him and people who are more casual observers miss a large element of a sport if it doesn't matter to you who wins. That whole history of the team, the local and international passions and emotions, the heightened drama of local derbys, etc -
they miss out.

However, there's the rub. If you commit yourself to a favourite, a local team, your home country, a team you follow closely and really want to succeed, then you're inevitably left disappointed on many days when they fail (just ask an England football fan). Perhaps this is why so many sports fans follow the big sports teams. They lower their risk of occasional disappointment, but still share in the highs.
As an dded bonus, they're probably save a lot more money not wanting to buy the latest jersey for the favourite team too !

So what's best ? Loyally follow your favourite local team through thick and thin or simply enjoy the sport as a non-partisan observer. Do you hate that sinking feeling of watching your team lose a heartbreaker ? I'm not saying you switch off completely from a great sport, but you can perhaps enjoy that sport more if you have less invested. You can enjoy the sport for what it is, a competition of teams that can both offer great skill, passion, class and determination. You can share in the joy of their victories and empathize a little when they fall short of their goals. You get it all. The only difference perhaps is the degree of emotions you exposure yourself to.
The thrill of victory or the agony of defeat.

Everton just scored. Great goal. It won't shape my mood for the rest of the day, but I'm glad I saw it live !

[I wrote the title of this blog after I wrote the content. I was struggling a little with an appropriate title, but thought this one was ok. However, it maybe broadens the topic beyond sport. After all, a rational person shouldn't really care about such non-important things as sport. But how about political races ? For the non-US readers - do you care who wins the US Presidential Election ? If it wasn't for the fact that the fate of the world was going to be put in the hands of a new player, it would be a pretty entertaining game, no ? More thoughts for a later post].


Carolyn said...

I'm a Leaf fan. 'Nuff said.

Scott said...

Funny you should mention the presidential campaign underway at the end of your post ... it was what I assumed your entry was about after reading the title :)

FWIW, I'm not much of a "pick a team and follow them to the end" kind of sports fan. In fact, I don't think anyone would describe me a much of a sports fan at all. Doesn't stop me from enjoying the occasional game, though. Just doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day to add another commitment to my overflowing plate - a commitment to keep up and rout for a particular team, particularly since the 2 sports that I'd be inclined to follow - baseball or hockey - have so many games in a season.