Monday, October 22, 2007

The Agony of Being a Sporting Fan (reality vs. fantasty)

It's October. Which gets labeled "Roctober" seemingly by everyone in marketing these days, however October is the best month for sports. However I have been finding myself conflicted.

Let's start with baseball. In March 07, I predicted the Indians to be in the World Series. And as they took a 3-1 lead, I didn't want the Indians to win Game 5. Heck I didn't even want them to win Game 6. However as Game 7 I was totally torn. To go with my early prediction pick, or to be a second-tier Red Sox fan. I say second-tier because I always root for MinnE teams FIRST AND FOREMOST then Boston teams. Although with all MinnE players heading to Boston, it's messing with my reasoning. I don't know if I should be mad at Boston or except the fact that they can pay MinnE players big bucks. Sidenote: I'm totally rooting for Jacoby Ellsbury so that the Red Sox choose to not make an offer for Torii. But that's besides the point.

Let's just say Game 7, I found myself swept up in the virtual components of Red Sox nation. Because I believe in momentum and I think Red Sox vs. Rockies will be more entertaining than Indians vs. Rockies.

I digress. And stop the tangent. Here's the point. Between all fantasty sports these days and reality sports, I find my allegiances are a bit confused. Take Game 7 of ALCS. If I threw this bet down in Vegas -- Indians to reach World Series in March -- I sure as heck would be rooting for the Indians to not choke. Money would be invovled. But since it's just bragging rights, and at least I picked a team potentially correctly to get to the World Series, I'm already looking good over most of my male friends. But then, there is the second-tier Boston fan thing that makes me want to root for all thing Boston, when appropriate.

I know this isn't just me. Fantasty football has done that to thousands of folks. And your team can even conflict itself. Say you had Packer D and LT and their previous match up this season, people found themselves rooting for AND against themselves. Packers D should stop everything, except don't strip the ball from LT and let him at least rack up 100 yards.

So in all of this reality sports and fantasty sports, while I argue they make us (the mildly-obsessed fan) engaged more -- they also make us more competative, and occassionally more competative with ourselves or our allegiances.

Growing up, my family thought I was going to try and be a sports writer. Sure enough, I went to journalism school, but the thought of being a sports writer was something I never took seriously. Because it was too much of my passion and I didn't want the "business" aspect of things to ruin my love of sports. And in a little twist of coincidence, I find myself on the marketing/community relations aspect of things working with the business people of the local Twin Cities sports teams to create "partnerships."

And you know what, I wouldn't trade any of it. Because being a sports writer might have been the death of me at 32 from stress and quite frankly I want more out of the life than the next five years. I want a championship to come to MinnE and not be stripped down or a scandal. So I'm wagering the best bet will be .......
The Wild.
(now that is a REALITY not a FANTASTY prediction.)

Sunday, October 21, 2007

A Weekend in the Sporting Life

"I woke up/Got out of bed/Dragged a comb across my head/Found a way ...."

Love that song. Great Beatles song. Prolly in my Top Five. The ALCS is about to start. Damn, I can't stand Buck and McCarver. So freakin' annoying. I can't decide who I would want to kill first --- John Madden or McCaver. Hell, at this point it could be Joe Buck. And to think like 8 years ago I thought Joe Buck had the chance to be a cool announcer like his father.

Wow, was I wrong. Complete and utter douche bag.

And it was a rough sporting weekend if you're a MinnE sports fan. First the Bison game. Although, really is anyone paying attention to Gopher Football? Just like no one is paying attention to Gopher Hoops or T-wolves.

Second, Golden Lads on Ice are SWEPT by CC. Swept. That hurts. Granted, I , a homer for Gopher Hockey, realize it's a rebuilding year, but the Gophs are usually good at coughing up a Friday night game and playing hard and winning on Saturday, avoiding the sweep. Oh well. Luckily it's only October and I still have tons of faith in Lucia, and even though I can't stand the comparison of Gopher Hockey to being the Yankees of College Hockey, I'm sound that Maturi will have to have a DARN good reason to get rid of Lucia. And I don't see Lucia walking away from this dream gig, EVER. Unless his daughter Ally, who someone how got a gig on FSN is involved in a sex scandal or an Anne Hutchinson in the locker room.

The Viking. Well, as long as Chilly is around, I have a hard time getting excited for Vikings games. But they were playing Dallas and it was good to see The Barbarian.

Kevin Millar gets to throw the ceremonial pitch for The Red Sox. He just oopsed Ellsbury. Hey Cowboy Up man, it's JacobY not Jacob. But whatever. Did I miss something, wasn't Millar playing for the Orioles this year? And he just threw out the ceremonial first pitch for Red Sox.....right?

The Wild. Thank God for The Wild. Otherwise it could be a more than depressing year for sports fans in MinnE ......although perspective check at least I'm not an Oakland fan or a Royals fan.........

And I'm leading this week in RandBall. I'm sure I just jinxed myself by typing that, but if the Red Sox could be the curse in 04, then I'll take my chances.