Me and football… we kind of had a falling out in 6th grade… It was rough. Jokes aside, I had a very bad experience through the football program at my school. Without getting into specifics, it kind of fostered an unhealthy distaste in all things related to the sport that lasted for quite a long time. After a while it became indifference though, mainly because I got bored of hating it.
Dislike became indifference and so it remained until last week, when my friend asked me to watch it with him and some others. I always am actively trying to become a better person, or just like grow when I can. So I saw this as an opportunity. I’ve never been to a Super Bowl watch party, but I wasn’t about to turn one down in this time period. So, this non-football fan went to a (covid conscious) Super Bowl watch party. And it was fun!!
With nachos in hand I watched what I understand to be a pretty average game of football. I went into it thinking to myself, “okay, watch the screen and try to see what others see. Try to see what all the fuss is about.” And to my delight I could! Will I be catching the next game I can? No.
But as I was watching I became aware of some of the nuances that always went over my head. First of all, the sheer physical abilities of these men is insane. Like it’s just nuts the amount of physical exertion that happens in one play. And then they always get up and do it again. These people are athletes of the highest caliber, and just thinking about how much time and effort and talent they put into everything that’s taking place on that field is humbling really.
Next is the coordination, or I suppose just the intricacies of the interaction between both teams. 11 people on both sides, pinned against each other in a battle that plays out every few seconds. The way the lines wrap around each other, the players in the back moving and trying to get open. It’s very interesting to watch when you look at the big picture. Like a war simulation in real time.
And then just the competition is exciting. It’s two parties trying very hard to get what they want with only each other in a way, (it’s really quite close to drama).
Anyways, it was really refreshing seeing how embracing something I’ve been avoiding all my life was rewarding. Let this be your friendly reminder to try things you definitely don’t want to, things you hate. Not because it’s guaranteed that you’ll like them, but because the subversion of your expectations is a powerful tool.
Jesus, I’m so goddam preachy.
Take care everyone!
-Jonah J. Sobczak