Taking a break from sports, for now

I am taking a break from attending sporting events, at least for this weekend. Instead, I am having a girl’s weekend. Sometimes, it is better just to let my husband enjoy these things on his own. So, he is off with the boys to see a baseball game. Am I sad? Only a little. I really enjoy doing things with my husband, but as you may have already figured out, my sports learning curve is quite high. I riddle him with questions at any sports-related outing. And I am probably asking the same questions over and over again. So, this will be a stress-free game for him, where he can actually focus on the game (and the beer). Of course, I always enjoy a new adventure and am happy to say that, because of my better half, I have now been to Panthers Stadium, which is in my own home town. It may not have been on my bucket list, but is was a good experience none-the-less. I love that my husband gets me outside of my comfort zone and doing new things.

That said, I am off to do some sports-free shopping (well within my comfort zone). Retail therapy, here I come. Enjoy the game, sweetie!

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Posted by on May 12, 2012 in Uncategorized


ESPN made me cry, again

As a general rule, I try not to watch ESPN. Yes, it may happen to be on when I get home, as my husband may be catching up on what’s going on in the sports world, but when this occurs I simply leave the room or tune the broadcast out. But when I go to the gym, I have no choice. Even though the vast majority of people on the cardio machines are women, the screens all tend to be playing a sporting event or Sports Center (yes, you can go ahead and complain that I am making an assumption that all these women would rather be watching something else, a remark bordering on sexism – comments section is below). So, I manage to get my daily dose of sports stories when I am at the gym. Thank goodness for subtitles, because I would otherwise have no idea what is going on.

I usually jump on the elliptical, grumbling to myself that ESPN is the only thing on, yet taking no action to change the circumstances (the gym does have remotes for the TV’s and will change channels upon request). But somehow, after a minute or two of staring blankly at the TV, I am sucked in. And what I find is oftentimes more soap opera than it is sports-related. You see, ESPN does these heartfelt stories about the personal lives of various athletes. And man, do they find some tear jerkers. Last night’s broadcast featured Blake Griffin, an NBA basketball player, whose best friend Wilson Holloway died from Hodgkins Lymphoma, just as Blake’s career was taking off (or so I am told). Read article here. This was sad, of course. The two had been friends all through high school and it seems they were inseparable. In usual form, I plowed through my workout, while sniffling and hoping the other gym rats didn’t notice my mournful demeanor. No need to hide it, though, because this will likely happen again, and if they are paying attention at all, they are probably wiping away tears, too.

Am I complaining? No, of course not. ESPN has found a way to suck me in and entertain me, by telling emotional stories of athletes that any human being can relate to and get choked up over. And I find that, just like watching an underdog-type of sports movie (like Miracle or Remember the Titans), the story of prevailing through tough times and coming out of top leaves me feeling that even I can relate to these athletes. ESPN puts a face to the various unnamed characters that I usually tune out when they take to the court or field and I am forced to watch. Next time I watch a LA Clippers basketball game (which is frankly unlikely to happen), I’ll be cheering on Blake Griffin. And I will be thinking of his friend, Wilson Holloway, because he could have been my friend, too.

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Posted by on May 1, 2012 in Uncategorized


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5 reasons why life should be more like baseball

5 reasons why life should be more like baseball.

I really love this post. The blogger finds a way to mke the sport of baseball relate to life. Something that is usually difficult for my non-sporty brain to understand. :)

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Posted by on April 21, 2012 in Uncategorized


Pat Summitt: A Post-Title IX Baby’s Tribute

Pat Summitt: A Post-Title IX Baby’s Tribute.

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Posted by on April 20, 2012 in Uncategorized


Everyone Else is Doing It

My husband was kind enough to share a story with me yesterday about marijuana use on college campuses, specifically on my beloved former campus at the University of Oregon, and specifically how this prevalent use related to the Ducks football team. I read the entire ESPN story, which was an accomplishment, since it was fairly long and technically a sports article. But here was something I could understand and really relate to… no, I do not relate to the use of drugs. I can, however, relate to living in an environment where drug use is the norm but due to my specific affiliations, I had to rise above and go against ‘the norm.’

A little bit of background would be appropriate at this point: I attended the University of Oregon after leaving active duty in the Air Force (stationed in Alaska, by the way, another popular marijuana haven). I was, however, still in the Air Force Reserves, doing my one-weekend-a-month duty, while attending graduate school. And one event from my first weeks in Eugene sticks out in my mind. I was driving to a party with other students, all of whom I had just met. One young woman began to tell a story of getting pulled over by the police and having shrooms in the car. The funny part (I guess) was that the cops never discovered the shrooms and the group went on their merry way.

Ok, so first of all, if I did drugs, I am not sure I’d be telling people I just met about my brushes with the law related to said drug use. Second, I am just not into the whole drug thing, never have been. Third, simply being associated with drug users when you are serving in the military can get you in hot water with your commander. I made the choice while in school to steer clear of situations (parties, mostly) that put me around those classmates who used drugs.

How does this relate to the Oregon article, you may ask? Well, to me, it seemed this whole article subtlety spoke to the nationwide issue of marijuana use and how prevalent and accepted it is in our society.  Yeah, I get it. Marijuana leads to less issues and proves to generally be less dangerous than alcohol (personally, I might have avoided more situations by drinking less alcohol). And yes, many people successfully use marijuana for medicinal uses. And if there is one place that marijuana is openly accepted as part of the culture, it is in Eugene, Oregon. But for me, this does not take away from the fact that it is ILLEGAL.

Having been a part of the military, I know what it means to be part of an organization that holds you to a higher standard. This fact is made abundantly clear when you raise your right hand and are sworn in. I believe that athletes are painfully aware of this fact, as well. Whether they are up to the task of being a role model at age 18 or not, when they become a part of a major college football team, they are role models. They need to live up to that if they want to be a part of the team.

The ESPN article also speaks to the stresses of going to school while maintaining an athletic team schedule. It almost felt as if the writer was cutting the players some slack…due to the stresses of their everyday life, maybe they deserve to relax a bit? Guess, what? Being in the military is stressful, too. And many airmen (soldiers, etc.) attend school while maintaining a crazy work and home life schedule. I, myself, worked swing shift (3 – 11 or later), and still attended about three classes a semester during the day while active duty. Others did it, and had families at home. And then there were the ones who juggled all this while being sent on various deployments. In the military, drug use is simply not accepted. Why should it be any different for athletes?


Posted by on April 19, 2012 in Uncategorized


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My favorite part of attending sports events?

As you can probably imagine by now, I don’t really enjoy attending live sporting events. Don’t get me wrong, there are some entertaining parts of being there, as opposed to watching on TV. Baseball can be fun and the ball parks usually have enough going on to keep me busy. Who doesn’t like eating ice cream out of a plastic hat? And the other spectators alone can provide for some good laughs. But what is my favorite part of sporting events, you ask? Why, the music, of course.

The music? Yes, for me, it is all about the music. Now, in a former life, I used to be a club kind of gal. I loved going to night clubs and dancing until the place shut down. And the dance music was my favorite. From Madonna to Prince, Britney to MJ, I loved it all. I enjoyed the not-so-mainstream kind of stuff, too. Nine Inch Nails, Technotronic, Gorillaz, and even the European dance mixes. So, when the series of CD’s known as “Jock Jams” came out, I was pretty amused to find that many of the songs I liked were included in these sports-themed compilations.

But when I began attending various games with my soon-to-be in-laws, this convergence of my former life as a party girl and my new life attempting to enjoy sports took a turn that my mind could not quite wrap itself around. At my first Gamecocks football game, I realized that the entire fan base seemed to love the techno song “Sandstorm.” Sandstorm had been one of those songs my favorite club played toward the end of the night, when drunk singles didn’t really care who they were dancing with (read: grinding up on). So to see an entire stadium of people, including my in-laws-to-be, jumping up and down as this song came on was rather perplexing, and frankly, did nothing to bolster my team spirit.

I have slowly learned to accept this merging of music I love with sports I don’t really care that much about. I will say that the use of dance music keeps me awake and lends itself to a party-type atmosphere. But there are still times that I hear “The Bomb” and all I want to do is put on a mini-skirt, grab a shot of tequila and start getting my groove on. Don’t judge. You can take a party girl out of the club, but you can’t take that club atmosphere out of the party girl.

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Posted by on April 16, 2012 in Uncategorized


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Men behaving badly…

While I can’t say I enjoy watching ESPN that much, I must placate my husband and allow him his TV time. So, once in a while, as I try to zone out the sports updates, I find a juicy story to grab onto. Don’t get me wrong, I am not following these stories religiously, but between the newscasts I overhear and updates from my husband, I get the gist of what’s going on. And lately, it seems that the front of the Sports Page in any daily paper reads more like a daytime soap opera. Thank you, misbehaving coaches and athletes.

This week, all the buzz seems to be about the Petrino guy (from Arkansas, I think). Evidently, he was in some sort of motorcycle accident with his ‘former’ mistress, and then left the scene. Oh, yeah, and he had just hired the woman at his university, as well. Why do I bring this up, if I am not all that interested in sports, you ask? Because 1) it gives me something to get interested in that involves sports, although not directly relating to the rules of the game, and 2) it makes these sports figures into real people, with real problems. And of course, it has legal implications, too, making me wonder at what point a person becomes a public figure, thus allowing their personal lives to become foder for the nightly news.

Now, of course I realize that just because you attain a certain level of success in your career, doesn’t mean you are immune to making poor choices in your personal life. Quite the contrary, it appears that people who attain celebrity status see a decline in the quality of their personal lives. But do these coaches really get involved in this career path thinking that one day they will be household names? And should a certain level of morals be expected from coaches (and athletes)? Plenty of CEO’s of top businesses behave badly and no one seems to blink an eye (unless they start stealing their shareholders’ money, but that’s another discussion, for another blog). What do you think?


Posted by on April 13, 2012 in Uncategorized


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