It’s true, winning feels great. Victory is a heady brew. A shared moment when differences are forgotten, when everybody is one heart, one mind. It gives us something in common. Something we can easily agree on and talk about with good feelings and smiles. That’s a rare thing these days.
Even so, no matter how often I hear “We won!” I can’t help but think the very same thing. No, YOU didn’t win anything — a team of highly paid and liberally pampered athletes who are coached and focused on one thing, and one thing only, won a game. A game. It’s not as if the losers get executed directly afterward or anything.
The rest of us, much as we might want to, can’t claim credit for any particular win, even the big, nationally televised ones. We did nothing but stuff ourselves with snacks while watching the contest on TV, or perhaps paid some exorbitant amount of money to be in the stands. We did not play in that game.
The most the rest of us can contribute is our voices and fervent prayers for a catch, a stop, a score.
My insolent sense of humor finds it especially entertaining every time I see a 3XL Tom Brady #12 (or the athlete of your choice) shirt on some guy lumbering through the mall. Or sitting at a bar scarfing down loaded nachos. Why big guys do this is beyond me. Do they admire an athlete THAT much? Don’t they realize the visual statement they make is absurd to say the least? Exactly the opposite of athletic.
I’m sure the player in question, no matter what happens after his playing days are over, will NEVER look like this.
Even when the player is naturally, impossibly big… the game jersey isn’t enough to convince the rest of us that this person is actually in our midst. Sorry, we aren’t quite that gullible. But then dedication to a team or a professional sport can make forget common sense, blind you to the impression you leave or opinions of other people.