Monday, January 16, 2012

I Get It

Yesterday the Green Bay Packers were defeated by the New York Giants in their NFC Playoff game, 37-20. By getting their asses soundly kicked, their quest for another Super Bowl ring came to a grinding halt. Guess what? I’m okay with that. Don’t get me wrong, I would have loved to see them win it all again. But they didn’t. Thankfully life goes on and I just have to find something else to occupy my time on Sundays. It’s not the end of the world.

I am not all torn up because they played like crap and lost. I know that it’s kind of remarkable that I feel this way. It even surprises me.

The Packers will get another shot at it next season starting in September. Most likely, I will watch every game. But I’m not going to lose any sleep in anticipation. I can wait.

I should have seen this coming. As exciting as last season’s championship run was, it wasn’t as special to me as the Packer’s triumph in Super Bowl XXXI. I can’t put my finger on it. It just wasn’t as thrilling.

This past season, I noticed that I was beginning to tire of the glut of Packer coverage, whether it was on TV or the radio. Nowadays, there are simply too many “experts” out there.

These “experts” come in many shapes and forms. Of course, there is the media. However, it’s not like the media of old. No longer is the media made up old jocks and guys that have been covering sports forever.

Those old school guys are now in the minority. They are being replaced with know-it-all women, snot-nosed kids and narcissistic media whores willing to say anything outlandish so that they get noticed.

The other group of “experts” is the fans. Because of the over saturation of media, there is a growing contingent of sports enthusiasts who think they know everything. The key word is think. The problem is they can only regurgitate the information they garnered from the new breed of 24/7 media, information that is often skewed.

Another reason I have lost some of the fire in my belly is the increasing amount of schadenfreude displayed by today’s fans. Schadenfreude is a German word meaning pleasure derived by someone from another person’s misfortune.

Back in the day, I was as guilty as anyone when it came to schadenfreude. Nothing pleased me more to see the Cubs or Bears blow a game. I knew there would be much wailing and gnashing of teeth to follow. And I loved it.

Somewhere along the line something changed because I don’t get the enjoyment from a Chicago loss like I used to do. Sure, some of their fans still irritate me, but for every asshole there are five dear friends that happen to support the teams that I can’t stand.

Last night, after the Packer’s catastrophic loss, I don’t know what annoyed me more, the Bear fans that came out of the woodwork basking in the Green Bay defeat, or the Packer fans that were wringing their hands in anguish and despair. Both groups need to grow up.

Maybe that’s what it is; I am finally growing up.

Years ago, Dad would often tell me to calm down when I would start hollering and stressing out during a game. He would say, “It’s not worth getting sick over, it’s only a game.”

At the time, I didn’t understand his lack of passion. After all, it was the Green Bay Packers! I knew Dad loved the Pack just like I did; he brought me up watching them. I just didn’t get why he never seemed to get as upset when they lost as I did.

Well, now I finally do. Dad, after all these years, I get it.

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Results from the Favorite TV Family Poll:

The Cleavers – 20%
The Keatons – 15%
The Andersons, The Bradys, The Flinstones and The Simpsons – 10%
The Barones, The Bunkers, The Clampetts, The Cunninghams and The Formans – 5%
No Votes – The Addams, The Arnolds, The Connors, The Huxtables, The Munsters, The Nelsons, The Partridges, The Petries and The Ricardos.

My friend Patty’s disdain for facebook’s new “timeline” is the inspiration for my new poll. Make sure you cast your vote before you leave. Until next time…from the booth.

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