Sunday, February 07, 2016

A Nerd's Ode to the Super Bowl

An excerpt from "Curse of the High IQ"

But before one perceives the above to be largely a female-dominated phenomenon, think again.  Because there can be nothing more average, more mindless, more meaningless than sports. 

While Madonna is convincing 60 year old women they’re still hot, 80% of the American men are glued to a TV set at a bar watching one large group of guys try to get a ball past another large group of guys in the all-so-important hopes of getting it past “the line.”

Does world peace ensue if the ball gets past “the line?”

Do we end world hunger if the ball gets past “the line?”

Do we solve the mysteries of the universe, cure cancer, achieve immortality, or find out the meaning of life if the ball gets past “the line?”

But that group of large guys with the blue and white jerseys got the ball past the line more than the group of large guys with the red and orange jerseys and that’s worth spending at least 5% of our GDP on.

The truth is, there’s nothing wrong with watching sports or enjoying a good game.  But if it were only that.  Sadly, millions of men (and women) pin their happiness and hopes, their actual mental state of mind, even their identity on whether or not “their” team wins.  Severely average men spend hours sitting at Applebee’s, eating wings, wearing some other man’s jersey, chugging away light beers as they set up fantasy sportsball teams based on real athletes who don’t even know (or care) that they exist.  And while we mock the billions of women wasting their lives watching day time soap operas, vicariously living a fake life while pissing away theirs, there’s just as many men wasting their lives watching pre-game shows, post-game shows, pre-pre-post-game shows, and calling into sports talk radio shows to Monday morning quarter-back men who are multi-million dollar professionals.

But the real tragedy is that despite TRILLIONS of human hours dedicated to these things, be it sports, celebrity gossip, or the slop served on TV, not one intelligent thing was ever said, nor one significant advancement ever made.  It is a sad waste of human life that abnormally intelligent people just can’t understand and, frankly, don’t care to.


minuteman said...

I wholeheartedly agree with you. That being said, My wife, me, and my two pre teen sons are going to watch the Oshawa Generals/Soo Greyhounds hockey game this afternoon. I played hockey as a kid, neither of my boys do, but I am not a fan like I was when I was a kid. We bought the tickets because they were a fund raiser for my son's scout troop. I am looking forward to an enjoyable Sunday afternoon at the game.

AverageMarriedDad said...

I agree with your point, but as an aforementioned fantasy sportsball team player there are varying degrees of indoctrination. Many men have a vacuum in their lives that are typically filled with meaning and substance. They simply don't have hobbies or interests to the mouth breathers gravitate towards social mediocrity that is the NFL and fantasy sportsball. I was one of those guys, and cared way too much about make believe (even as one who could be a Mensa member). As my interests and life gathered much more substantial meaning, my interest in make believe significantly waned. As it should. There is a place for such frivolousness, but it shouldn't dominate a man's weekend or life. And that is where the problem lies for many other average married men.

Unknown said...

Most people in our country are just marking time 'til they die. Some start at 60, some at 16.

Unknown said...

Most people in our country are just marking time 'til they die. Some start at 60, some at 16.

Normal Guy said...

It's entertainment, pure and simple. Like Gladiators back in the days. It serves as feeding for the cattle, to keep them complacent, to keep them distracted. Bread and circuses.

It's not as if those people were going to make advancements anyway even if you took away their entertainment. What does it matter what they do with their time? Same could be said of any hobby. Anything that isn't directly productive.

People need entertainment, it's ingrained in our minds. We can't live normal lives without it. We need distraction, we need drama, we need to have something other than ourselves to focus on, we would go made without that.

Tucanae Services said...

Observation: Soap Operas should have a warning label that is posted before they air on TV.

Background: Dear ole dad many years ago had to go in for a lung operation for what looked like a tumor. Operation success, turns out it was a benign cyst. But he was laid up in the post op for two weeks with nothing to do but twiddle the TV dial. He got hooked on three afternoon soaps like visual crack.

Cure: An entire month without any TV at all.

Mark Matis said...

Panem et circenses.

Nothing more. Nothing less.

Albert said...

The athletes of moneyball games are also tacitly treated as above the law, provided that their various crimes can be kept out of the public view.

To watch the various flavors of moneyball is to endorse assault and rape.

أفلاك الأفكار said...

The benefit of watching sports is that if you watch them to improve your abilities in that sport, which helps your physical fitness.
As an example, i love playing soccer - it both nurtures my creativity and physical state. Running while chasing a ball is waaay more enjoyable than running for the sake of running on a treadmill in the gym. When i watch soccer, i try to see how i would play the ball differently and along the way end up learning new moves and tactics.
This i see as a beneficial form of watching a sport.

However, i agree that turning into a new form of tribalism is indeed taking it too far.

evilwhitemalempire said...

Sports are a convenient vent for male anger and competitiveness that might otherwise make things a lot harder for our overlords.

Eh, Whatever said...

All that to state, "Please stop liking what I don't like."

Ferret said...

I'd be curious if anyone has done the math to calculate the amount of money that has been poured into pro and college football (both the game itself and the related advertising) which, if put toward practical sciences, just how many other planets we might have colonized over the last 50 years.

Peregrine John said...

Been explaining this to people for ages. The shrugged dismissal the argument usually gets suggests that they know but don't want to think about it.

Willy B Good said...

This is one topic where Cappy and I part ways, though I agree with 99% of everything else he says. I don't feel any need to justify WHY I enjoy watching the sports I do (rugby league, wrestling and ice hockey). But man, I sure do love to watch them.

grey enlightenment said...

Some of the smartest people I know or knew follow at least one sport. It's a matter of personal tastes and preferences and less with intelligence. Vox Day follows football and he's hardly an intellectual slouch. I don't think the correlation is that strong.

Freddie from Sealy said...

I spent the afternoon coasting on the bunny slopes. I take pride in having been alive for the entire series of Superbowls, and have never watched any of them. Nope, missed all 50.
Skiing on Superbowl Sunday is pretty much a guarantee that the lift traffic will be at a weekend minimum.
I watch Cubs baseball, occasionally, because I would go to Wrigley Field with my Grandmutter, when I was young. A little old Austrian lady who, inexplicably, was addicted to the Cubs, a team that hadn't won a World Series since she was a girl under the monarchy of Franz-Joseph. And hasn't, yet.

ghostsniper said...

I get a chuckle out of reading less than average intelligence people making silly rationalizations for their less than average intelligence hobbies.

Anonymous said...

Marx, as usual got it wrong.

Organized sport is the opiate of the masses.