Thursday, September 07, 2006

Things I don’t understand… (the first in a series (if I get around to it))

I’ve been around for a while… over 24 years, actually. Thinking about that really puts in perspective how complicated life is. I’m not trying to get philosophical, I just mean that if I were to have the same job for 24 years (as opposed to my personal record of seven months) I would expect to know the ins and outs of that job like Harry Carey knew “Take me out to the ballgame.” In reality, I have been a person for 24 years (hopefully that is not a surprise), yet there are many things I see everyday that my bachelor’s degree-attaining brain cannot begin to comprehend. The list is much too long for this space, but here’s a taste…

Sports “fans”
Sports are great. I love sports to the point that much of my life has focused on them. From spending my petty amounts of money as a child on baseball cards, to writing about sports in my first “real” job (the money made me wonder if it was really a job at certain times), years of my life have centered on athletic competition. Today, there are few things that can draw my interest like the opportunity to watch one of my teams of choice.
With this obsession that may be borderline-unhealthy, I have noticed one deeply disturbing trend: fans that do nothing but rag on the team(s) they are fans of. How can people call themselves fans of said team if they do nothing but scoff at their play, pout about their executive decisions and follow up every loss with, “They’re horrible. I knew they would lose,”?
In reality, they can’t. It’s not accurate.
The online dictionary, (no questions about what you’re getting there) has one definition for fan that has nothing to do with blowing air. According to this definition, a fan is “an enthusiastic devotee, follower, or admirer of a sport, pastime, celebrity, etc.” Normally, when I admire something I don’t spite it, complain about it constantly or simply ignore it.
I’m not saying a complaint now and then is strictly forbidden. On occasion, they’re called for. Like if a hypothetical baseball team trades an all-star outfielder for a shortstop whose batting average struggles to eclipse his weight, the hypothetical fan has a right to be mad about that move (and nearly outraged when that hypothetical outfielder goes on to be hypothetically named the MVP of the hypothetical championship… remember, this is all hypothetical). What can’t happen is getting down on the team to the point that you are no longer taking interest in whether they win or lose. If that becomes the case, as discussed earlier, the person in question can no longer accurately be considered a fan.
They then become a poser fan. Because that sounds a little long, we’ll shorten it to pfan. To avoid any confusion, the “p” in “pfan” is silent. Thus, the correct pronunciation of “pfan” is “person with no sense of direction or loyalty that simply prefers to take the easy route and associate him-or-herself with whatever team seems to be playing well at the moment.”
Pfan… it’s a surprisingly complicated word.

What will be the next item Derek does not understand?
The process of smelting?
Females in general?
Does he even know?
Find out tomorr- uh… next wee- no…. whenever he gets around to wasting time by writing something else.