I did not grow up playing or following sports of any kind. When I started first grade, we had physical education or “PE”, starting with softball. I had never even heard of the game, and was surprised that somehow I was supposed to know how this game was played. Long story short, I was a great runner (and usually was picked to run for the girl in our class who wore leg braces), but never could catch a ball or swing a bat very well.
There was PE all the way through grade school, high school and college. I learned to be an adequate volleyball player, and was just ok in field hockey and volleyball. The one thing I was good at was rope-climbing; I had lots of practice climbing trees.
I just didn’t see the point of sports and why people got so excited about them. My little family of three were readers, not sports folk. When I wasn’t reading or climbing trees I liked making things from kits, singing and collecting rocks and seashells.
Of course, during the long and lovely summer evenings, I played hide and seek or Red Rover with the neighborhood kids. But we never named these simple games as “sports.” For us it was just magical to be out in the warm dusk of summer, with the intoxicating scent of flowers everywhere.
Of course there were times when going to our high school football games (the same in college, too) was expected; school spirit and all that. Usually I just cheered with everyone; I didn’t have clue one as to what they were cheering about or why. A few times I snuck a paperback book with me and just read until the damned game was over.
I once dated a guy (one date only) who kept trying to get me interested in baseball. Just as soon as he said the word ‘baseball,’ any interest I had in him disappeared in a puff of smoke. He tried teach me how the game went, and, since I hadn’t yet learned the graceful but powerful phrase, “I’m sorry; I’m just not interested in baseball or any other sport,” I fake-listened until my eyes glazed over.
He ran through about every sport in the universe, including darts and chicken-chasing, asking if maybe I would like to know more about sports in general. For some reason, he felt it was his moral imperative to find a sport I could love.
Well, decades later, I never have found that sport. Want to know why? Because I didn’t care. I still don’t care. Sports are just not an interest for me.
I didn’t then and I don’t know now what all the fuss is about. I believe in ‘live and let live;’ everyone is welcome to their opinions, likes and dislikes. The only problem I have with sports is when it interferes with things I would like to watch but have all been preempted because of the friggin’ game!
So, sports fans, here’s my two cents. You like sports? Great. It’s your right as an American citizen to do so. It’s my right not to give a hoot about sports. Live and let live, I say. Don’t press me to watch a football game and I won’t suggest books for you to read.