Ruminations on Football


I spent a few hours yesterday watching professional football. It had been several years since I sat down to watch a full game. Jesus Christ, I had forgotten what it was like. Giant, ‘roiding super-athletes running full speed into one another, fighting over yardage they can produce while having an oblong ball in their hands. It’s a very, very strange game. When representatives from The Intergalactic Congress arrive and are shown this game – along with most of our games – the aliens from TIC will instantly recognize professional football for what it is: an elaborate substitution for fighting.

Like all elaborate substitutions for fighting, it struck me as dishonest.

[An aside

Instances like this also remind me why I find it so goddamn strange when people think humans (a) are not animals, and (b) do not share common ancestry with animals…:

“By charging through the forest, tearing up vegetation, males display to assert themselves without actually coming to blows.”

“By charging down the field, tearing up defensive lineman, males display to assert themselves without actually coming to blows.”]

There was so much post-play pushing, shit-talking, gesturing, posturing, et cetera, that I found myself honestly shocked at the players’ behavior. They resembled a pack of wild beasts as much as a team of 1% athletes. Really, it was disappointing to see.

Also, I felt a very particular pang of a thought I often have while bouncing.

“If you honestly intend on fighting someone to prove your dominance, how much shit-talking should you do beforehand?” Being sober as a bird while working, I have seen a near countless amount of male posturing for dominance. It almost never escalates, though. And the size of the display of posturing is INVARIABLY inversely proportional to the distance the subject has from the object. In other words, A talks a lot more shit to B if B is very far away (but still within earshot); and A talks a lot less shit if B is close (while B is postured to fight as well).

It was weird seeing all that in play on the so-called Grid Iron. Jiu-Jitsu is much, much more honest.

Anyway. Happy Thanksgiving.

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