One of the great joys of watching sport on television is doing so with others. Joining with the right friends to bust balls, throw a few back, and discuss the game at hand. Personally, I am rather selective in who I view a sporting event with. I don't claim to be Bill Parcells or Joe Torre, but my sports knowledge is greater than the average bear, and I keep myself informed of the latest in the sports world. All I ask of those around me is that they have their finger on the pulse of the sport, and the game we are viewing. It makes the viewing experience so much better when others contribute to what is going on.
On the other hand, watch a game with the wrong people and it will turn into an irritating experience. I follow the Phillies and Eagles fairly closely, and I keep my finger on the pulse of the Flyers until the spring when I really dive in for some playoff hockey. The Sixers, I just get all my info from a friend who has entered fan martyrdom and follows the Sixers religiously. With all that said, I can only bear to watch a Phillies game with certain people. Don't tell me pro sports isn't important. Does it affect my life? No. Does what happens in a movie affect my life? No. The actors don't know me either. But what they do interests me. It is something to admire and enjoy. Sport is true unscripted entertainment. It's the originial reality TV. I am interested in watching these professionals work towards excellence. Don't start with "they don't have the same heart" as college athletes. We typically only see the glorious side of a pro athletes life. The cars, money, clothes, women, attention and so on. We don't see the free loading families, invasions of thier privacy, and so on. Nobody writes a column about my job performance. Imagine that. Try to imagine the national media scrutinizing your every move. Didn't quite finish that balance sheet? Didn't call back that client with an answer to thier question? Send a few texts in your cubicle? Tune into talk radio, theyll be analyzing every little facet of it. Oh and by the way before you leave the office, face a throng of reporters asking you generic questions for 15 grueling minutes.
Do NOT give me the "why are you upset" line when I react to the TV. People who don't have the same emotional investment in a team as you are difficult to watch a game with. It's like playing blackjack with nonbetting onlookers hanging over your shoulder. GET THE F*** AWAY! Another post about that will follow.
The worst is when people have conversation about a team they know nothing of, or start referring to things that are historically inaccurate. But I may be stuck in a situation with some ignoramus fans and I have to bite my tongue to not constantly correct every little thing they say. They get simple dates and stats wrong, or say say shit that is just stupid. Typical uninformed fan banter gets under my skin. "That guy is a pussy", "He sucks", "THROW TO JACKSON", "Put in Kolb", "Fire Reid", "Bat him 7th", "SHOOT THE PUCK", "DROP THE GLOVES", and the list goes on. They exist in every city, for every team. Except the NY Islanders, no one cares about them.