I believe most sports fans are, but it is football season, as every other post on Facebook indicates, so I will use football for this comparison. I am not a sports fan. I was a sports watcher when I was little and actually went to Seahawks games as a kid. In fact the only team I may notice now a days is the Seahawks due, I think, to the childhood memories. Beyond that, I could not care less about sports.
I few days ago I remembered a conversation I had with a football geek years ago that made the geek behavior of football fans stand out as very similar to my own geek behavior around sci-fi/fantasy. This gentleman was going on and on about what team needed to lose to what team for his team to get into the playoff. I had not known, or cared, that there was a point system and that some people break it down to half and quarter points. Really? I thought, you can’t be serious. He was quite serious and for a brief moment I considered telling him to get a life until I remembered the conversation I had had with him previous to the football one. I had felt obliged to explain that the Vulcans in Star Trek were distant cousins to the Romulans. (He had not known, and I was shocked by that). So I explained the cultural philosophy that led to the separation of the people on the show. Sports fans are always surprised that I never know when the Superbowl is, as surprised as I always am over people who have never read the Lord of the Rings. Seriously, what is wrong with you people.
So I became more aware of the easy comparisons between football geeks and sci-fi fantasy geeks.
On the walls around my desk I have a “I want to Believe” poster of the UFO from the fifties that was in the X-Files T.V show, as well as wizard pictures. Football fans have team pennants, Jerseys, autograph balls, and even stickers on their cars comparable to “beam me up Scotty” or “Frodo Lives” stickers. Football fans have the Superbowl and will spend weeks if not months planning it, buying new televisions, stocking up on the appropriate snacks and food/beverages for the big day. For me it is when a long awaited book comes out. I had the last three volumes of the Harry Potter series pre-ordered and delivered to my house on the day they came out. I too had stocked up on food, three days worth, and everyone who knew me knew to not bother to call because I was busy. Books that size have to be read at least twice right away, as everyone knows. Long awaited movies and marathon DVD days are similar experiences for me that game day is for football geeks.
Yet most football geeks I know have no understanding of how reading an eight hundred plus page book all at once can be entertaining anymore than I understand how watching a bunch of big guys pummel each other and then slap each other on the ass is entertaining. Most football fans do not understand investing time and energy into caring about people that don’t exist anymore than I understand calling people who play a game warriors? Really, I don’t get that.
There are many more comparisons that could be made but these make my point. If you are a hard core football fan, you are a geek too. Live with it.