OK, this is my first original topic, so I hope I have this in the right area. I really don’t want to rant too much, but this topic is a hot button issue for me.
I come from a city that is not really big on sports. (Los Angeles.) I mean, there are sports fans, and all, and it is a big thing, but it is not that big a deal. L.A. didn’t seem to mind a bit when the NFL passed them by - not ONE BIT.
So, coming from a city like that, I recently move to this city in the midwest that really does treat sports like a religion. And I cannot reconcile myself with it. I think it is even a little sick at times! I mean, everyone wears the “team colors” on a game day (and every Friday) businesses have their employees dress up in team colors - they have “Team ice cream” and “Team pasta” and many other team-related products. People paint their cars up in team colors - A LOT of people do this, or put little dorky team flags on their cars. People decorate their entire houses with team stuff - or at least have a special room dedicated to the Team. This is quite common. I think it is scary.
A while ago, when the team lost some big game, the local news listed support groups to call that would help disappointed fans overcome the terrible blow. One time a Team player who messed up a game got death threats. Some people call in sick the day after a game - enough so that rush hour isn’t as congested in the morning. The local news media feeds into it all. I decided to stop watching local news because I could not stand hearing the sports news ALWAYS get the lead story, even if some important national news event (Bosnia, whatever) had just happened.
How common is this? Is this sick, or what?
I don’t have a problem with individuals being big sports fans - hey - it’s fun. I don’t want to rain on anyone’s parade - there’s nothing wrong with being a fan. But when it is a top priority for a whole town, and everyone is assumed to care deeply about the Team - how normal is this? Why do people get so obsessed? (I often hear that it is because the town is so dull that there is nothing else to get excited about, and I do think there is an element of truth to that.)
So, what do the rest of you say? Is this sick or “normal”?