Thursday, June 27, 2013

Hearts of Steel - Prologue


Football sucks. It has to be the most idiotic game ever invented. No, I take that back. I think that game where the moderator exclaims "Its a 3-pointer!" takes the prize for idiocy. But football runs a close second.

I'm not talking about football, otherwise known as soccer. Noted players like Pele can make even bouncing a ball on top of their heads look sophisticated. 

Am I ready for some football? No, Never. Not even if you paid me. Before you jump into conclusions, let me be the first to say that I know what the game is all about. Nobody can accuse me, Priye Cole, of letting ignorance prejudice my thinking. That is, I know how the game is played. I know how many players are supposed to be on the field. I know the players positions. I understand the mechanics of the game.

What I don't get is what makes otherwise sane individuals run full tilt toward each other, deliberately trying to bash each other's brains out for temporary possession of a ball. It's ridiculous. 

And the people who dress up, parading around in feathers or face paints, all in the name of supporting their team, ought to be looked up as well. For real! If you saw a grown man on the street, in a giant chicken costume, flapping his arms and clucking in your face, wouldn't that want to make you call the local law enforcement? 

I wasn't always this way. I wasn't always a player hater. Before I saw the light, I enjoyed a rousing game of football, just as much as the next girl. There was something about sitting on the huge, sectional couch with my father and older brothers, yelling at the television, cursing or blessing the team, that was as close to heaven as I could get on a Sunday afternoon. 

I had to like football. If a girl following behind two big brothers wanted any attention at all from her father, she had better learn to like what he liked. So I did. When my dad cheered for a play, I cheered for a play. When my dad cursed the coach, I cursed the coach. That is, for some of my dad's colorful epithets I substitued my own. "Such goal-less fool" was one of my more careful substitutions. Still, if I shouted it loud enough, it sounded very close to the real thing.

But I remember, almost to the day, the very hour, when I came to my senses. It was the year '99. If my math is correct, that means I've been carrying a grudge against that silly game for forteen years now. I'd almost forgotten about my conversion, or rather...the birth of my aversion. 

What suddenly reminded me just how much I disliked that game? When the little boy sitting directly across from me lanched a grapefruit-size football at my head to get my attention.

Yeah, that's the way to make me a fan. Go team.

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