Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Getting What You Want

I broke up with the NFL during the first game of the season. I'd already started pulling away last season, but I made the breakup official after watching part of a thoroughly un-entertaining first game of the season, which was punctuated by one of the most ridiculous calls I've ever seen. (Even though it went in my team's favor.)

The separation was mostly amicable. I didn't have the time or patience to deal with the NFL's anal boring rules and play stoppages, and they weren't willing to change to suit me. I think they might have had some other fans on the side. (Can you believe me, of all people, complaining about anal boring rules? That should show you how bad the NFL has become.)

I don't miss it and there aren't any hard feelings. You do your thing, NFL, and I'll do mine. Frankly, it's been nice to have my Sunday afternoons back. I no longer spend 7 hours every weekend yelling at my TV. I hardly ever call anyone a "worthless piece of shit" anymore. I couldn't tell you what I do with my Sunday afternoons now, but I always seem to be busy and the NFL games I'm missing don't cross my mind.

Every once in a while I'll see Facebook posts that remind me about games. I'll hear news reports on the radio or see an update on a news site. Apparently, my team, the Bears, who have caused me no small amount of anguish and frustration over the years, are having a great season. Figures.


It's a sad irony of life that we only get things we really yearn for after we no longer care about them.

For example, when I was a kid I would have wanted nothing more than to sit and eat all the candy I could stuff into my mouth. I dreamed of mountains of candy. Now, as an adult, I have the means and self-autonomy to do that, only I don't really care about it that much.

In college all I wanted was to sit and play the computer game Civilization II all day long, every day, but I didn't have my own computer and things like studying would get in the way. Now that I have the means and time to play, I'm mostly over it.

So it is with my beloved Bears. For years and years all I wanted was for them to have a great season, go the NFC Championship game, beat down some poor team in the snow at Soldier Field, and then win the Super Bowl. This season, I guess it's nice to know that they're doing well, but it doesn't really affect me.

This Sunday the Bears are in the NFC Championship game. I think this might be the NFL's way of trying to win me back. Not only that, but they're playing their arch rivals, the Packers, at Soldier Field. It's the oldest rivalry in the NFL, and the Bears and the Packers have never met in a championship game. Wow, NFL, I appreciate how hard you're trying.

So I'll probably watch the game.

But don't think this changes anything, NFL. The issues we had haven't gone away. I won't be waiting for you next season.

But for the next few weeks: Go Bears.

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