As last night’s entry on my “love affair” with football turned out longer than I intended, I couldn’t truly say everything I wanted to about the subject. Watching football holds nostalgic significance for me and perhaps that’s another reason why I don’t watch it much anymore. That statement doesn’t seem to make much sense, but hear me out.
While I did watch some high school football games, most of the football I watched was the NFL on television. I also remember watching some arena football games when they tried to make that big on TV for a brief period. Growing up, I remember football on Sundays being about enjoying yummy snacks and listening to my father grumble about his team, the Buffalo Bills, not doing so hot. The Bills did okay for a few years, but overall, I don’t remember them doing exactly stellar. I didn’t really have a favorite team when I was a teenager, I just liked watching the games and I’d root for whatever team or player happened to be running an exciting play at the time.
Another way I remember watching football is not actually watching it, but falling asleep during it. You see, my horseback riding lessons were on Saturday mornings and in the winter, I’d come home almost frozen solid from riding around in a barn for an hour and sometimes helping out afterward. I remember coming home, curling up under a blanket on the big, marshmallow couch in the family room, turning on whatever Saturday game I came across first, and being lulled to sleep by the sound of the commentators. I’d eventually wake up all thawed out and cozy again and by then the TV would be showing the next game. Nowadays, I still almost nod off just listening to football commentators.
When I moved out of my parents’ house to live in an apartment, I finally found a team I wanted to root for. Though I’ve received much ridicule and eyebrow raising for my choice, I still stand by it. The team I chose as my favorite is the Detroit Lions and I’ll explain why. One fall day in 1998, I was watching them play on the TV in the apartment. I remember being impressed by their young quarterback, Charlie Batch, as he took risks that the commentators didn’t agree with. Perhaps I was attracted to the quarterback’s rebellion or just the whole underdog feeling of the team or a combination of many factors, but right then and there, the Lions became my team. I remember talking to my father about the Lions and he’d always tell me that they did really well in the 1950’s. I think the memory of him always saying that is another reason why the Lions still are and always will be MY team. Add into that the fact that my girls are both Leos and that I’ll always be able to watch the Lions play on TV at least once a year, and it’s all good. =)
I admit that I haven’t watched the Lions play or any football really, in at least a year. I don’t even know how my team is doing this year. They’ve had some decent years but they always seem to blow it in the end. Why haven’t I watched? One reason is that I’m usually too busy to watch TV for that long and if I do, I prefer watching a movie. Another reason is that it’s not as much fun anymore. Watching football alone now doesn’t give me the warm, fuzzy feelings it did in the past. My daughters have no interest in watching it and without a reason to have a table full of snacks for everyone to snarf as we watch, I kind of forget it’s still on. I’m sure it doesn’t help that the men I’ve had in my life have always seemed to rank football as a higher priority than me, which dampened my enjoyment of the game considerably. I’m sure I’ll enjoy watching it again someday, snuggled up on a couch with the right man, who even if he rolls his eyes at my choice of teams, thinks it’s awesome that I love football. Because I do still love it, but it just doesn’t fit my life right now. Someday…