It could be that these are the truest words I’ve ever heard about my obsession with football. Or maybe it’s not.
I’ve asked myself plenty of times why this game has come to mean so much to me. Why do I invest so much of myself emotionally to a mere game? Why have I shed tears (and probably will continue doing so) for this team from the city of Rome, a city I will probably never visit anytime soon, in a country I have no connection to at all? Why would I schedule my weekend around the time that the late afternoon match is shown on the premium football channels I pay extra for when I barely have enough for the Metro? Why would would I wake up on a few hours of sleep on a Sunday morning to do the same thing to watch a potential nil nil draw?
Simply, this game, this team Roma, are my one escape from everything. For a mere two hours (or even less if it’s on the DVR and I’m on a time limit to watch), I don’t have to worry about finishing my associates, I don’t have to worry about how to change the perceived notion of my colleagues at work that I’m a vagabond, how to help get all the bills paid at my house, how I’m going to send money to my ailing grandmother back home in El Salvador when all the said bills are do. But unlike a drug addict or an alcoholic, my ‘buzz’ is just for those two hours. Yes, I admit to rambling off to my coworkers of why football is greater than any American sport and also to knowing WAY too much about the players on the teams I watch (why on God’s green earth should I know that the journeyman Cristiano Lucarelli is the owner of a Communist newspaper based in the city of the most left wing Italian club Livorno?!). I admit to also recording any and every football news show on TV as well as making 75% of my Facebook/Twitter updates about the sport- okay, more like 90%… Sue me.
But like any fanatical person, I remember to keep it in check. I remember that why this is my escape, it’s not my life. I know very well that as much as I invest in my love for Roma or any football team or match-up, Roma could care less about this Salvadorian American guy in DC. When these players pickup their weekly paycheck which is on average higher than any yearly income I will ever make in my life time, they don’t care if that goal they scored from 20 yards out made me the happiest kid on an over-packed Metro train following the match on his smartphone with a bad 3G feed. They don’t care if the utter whiff they had on an easy clearance that saw them lose the league for the 10th year in a row ruins my weekend from the start even though I’m set to see my girlfriend, baby nephews and extended family that is visiting since forever ago. I know the beautiful game is the biggest cash making scheme in all sports, helping Billionaire owners bankroll their city size yachts while the fans have to pay more and more every year for kits, scarfs, tickets, tv viewing rights and even the chance to see their players train.
So when I go about watching my game on the weekend, know that it’s not my life, my life is my family and my loved ones. But damn, sometimes, the sweetest thing after a very long week is seeing a gorgeous goal go in at 8:37 AM while everyone is still sleeping and I have to yell a silent film scream of happiness. Tease it for being the biggest consumer whore thing you have ever heard, hate it for not being cultured, being brute, being so Neanderthal because it might be the saddest thing but at the end it’s my one thing I truly indulge in fully. Even if it’s just two hours.
i agree completely.