Monday, October 4, 2010

The Reality of Fantasy


I love fantasy football more than anyone. I love fantasy football so much that I didn’t join a league this season because I acknowledged that my addiction was taking over my life. In years past, girlfriends would complain that I didn’t have enough time for them. Friends would wonder why my phone went straight to voicemail during Monday Night Football. I wasn’t leaving the house on Sundays unless I had to. And if I had to, I was checking scores on my phone every other minute. To make matters worse, I usually won, and my extreme efforts were rewarded with cash prizes, therefore validating my ugly habit. Something had to be done.

At the mercy of my fantasy fetish, I knew I needed to protect myself from myself. Like a smoker throwing away his cigarettes or a sex addict becoming a priest (Okay, maybe that last simile doesn’t work). If I signed up for another league this year I knew that I wouldn’t get anything productive done in my free time. No longer would I exchange precious moments in which I could be writing or exercising for hours in front of the TV watching a meaningless game. Never again would I check espn.com on my cell in between innings of my softball game when I should be focusing on an actual sport (yes, softball is an actual sport—ask any lesbian).

After softball yesterday, my team headed to a local sports bar to enjoy some beer and football. That sounds like a waste of time, you might say, but since it was spent with friends and not alone, curled up in the fetal position after “my” quarterback threw his 3rd interception in the first half, I argue it was an afternoon well spent. Unfortunately, at the bar I spotted several guys dabbling in a social crime that made my former fantasy addiction look like a healthy habit.

In a room full of rowdy football fans, high fiving and “cheersing” mugs of beer, sat multiple individuals—none of them together-- with a laptop in front of them, watching the games, and taking advantage of the bar’s free Wi-Fi as they checked their fantasy teams. I wanted to suggest one of them Google the word “vagina” so they would finally know what one looked like. These guys had invented a brand new and improved kind of loser. What the hell is going on with our society? From Facebook to a nuclear bomb, all technology is neutral. It’s what humans do with that technology that makes it good or bad. And this was as bad as it could get.
What you do with your computer at home is your own business.
I’m not against fantasy football. I’m not against checking your team’s stats constantly. As I previously stated, I used to do so myself. What I am against is taking up an entire booth at a bar so you can have one-on-one time with your laptop. You can’t be discreet and check your cell phone? Are iPhones not advanced enough for you? And why must you do this in public? Are you paying for so many fantasy league entry fees that you can’t afford cable or Internet in your mother’s basement? What’s next, logging on to match.com while you’re in the middle of a club full of single ladies? What’s the point? Fantasy leagues are for talking smack to your friends and winning a little cash, not exposing to the world your social dysfunction while taking seats away from people who actually have friends not named “Mac Book.”

The highlight of the day came when a touchdown was scored and one of these fantasy nerds jumped up in joy as if he had scored the touchdown himself and looked around for someone to high five. Unfortunately, no one was there to receive it. I’m sure the adrenalin secreted from his team’s point total jumping up six points was quite a rush, but when he realized he had no one to share his exaltation with, he slowly returned to his laptop and watched the rest of the game in silence. 

And therein lies the problem with wasting too much of one’s life taking part in activities that revolve around the word “fantasy.” Eventually, they all come to an end and we have to return to this inconvenient place called reality.

3 comments:

  1. I'm only reading this because the day's ESPN fantasy football blogs haven't been posted yet.

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  2. Okay, at first I didn't think the laptop dude at the bar was THAT dorky until I read your blog. His laptop was taking up quite a bit of room from all the beer that could have been in its place. But laptop dude doesn't come to mind when I think of dorky at this bar...McBangs is the only dude coming to mind.

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