Thursday, April 23, 2015

Three great reasons to hate pro sports

I hate pro sports.

First up, I think pro sports make you drink too much beer. Now, I know there's a lot of hard-core sports fans who will argue that there is no such thing as "too much beer."

I rest my case.

I'll just rest it on the table in the kitchen for a sec and then I'll bring it in and park it between the La-Z-Boys.

Have you ever in your life seen a sports event without beer company sponsorship?

Do you think there's a reason for that? I could write a dissertation on the beer-sports vortex.... actually, I think I did once.

I also hate pro sports because professional athletes make me feel inadequate. Like, I'll be in my favourite gay bar in Toronto at two in the AM, and then the Leafs will start trickling in, and all of a sudden I'm fuckin' chopped liver.

I just hate that!

But the main reason I hate professional sports is that it represents the commodification of passion. Think about it.

A couple of generations ago the top guys in the NHL came up playing road hockey in Kapuskasing fourteen hours a day. Using horse-shit for pucks.

In last weeks' draft all the top picks were kids who've been getting into the top hockey programmes since they were three years old, by parents who have the resources to make elite hockey camps happen ten or fifteen years in a row.

A couple of generations ago all the top guys in the NBA came up shooting baskets in the driveway or the playground till well past midnight, even after all the buddies had gone home. That made them high-school stars, which made them college stars, which made them names in the big show.

Today every number one pick is the product of 18 years of careful planning by solidly middle-class parents and a coterie of advisers and coaches. Do you think it's a coincidence that more and more often we find that top drawer professional athletes come from top drawer professional athlete parents?

Sure, some of them may still love the game...

But it's just another commodity.

Having said that, I gotta wrap this up. Lebron and my man Tristan just whupped the Celts, so I have to get back to the hockey game.

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