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Why men like football

by Archives January 31, 2001 0 comment
Sitting in a living room that contained enough machismo to make a caterpillar blush and pre-empt metamorphosis, superbowl Sunday helped remind me of the all important fact that every once in a while the beast that is man needs an excuse to romp and roar.
The game itself was an insignificant excuse for gathering that brought together a symposium of unfettered students, whose papers and notes were forgotten in drawers elsewhere. Men the size of horses charged into each other on the
television set, egged on by their coaches and fans. Fights broke out, helmets were slapped and pools of sweat concentrated on the chest area of the stallions’ uniforms. Meanwhile, similar chaos broke out in the living room. Quesadilla juice stained pants, beer bottles jarred into each other and a debate over the
pragmatics of having a shag rug on the living room floor ensued; this wasn’t little league debate after all, this was the superbowl.
In the corner a fierce-looking giant from RMC (Royal Military College), who had come into town just to watch the game, sought approval for a claim that he was single-handedly responsible for the images of Canadian peace keepers that now cling to the backsides of the new Canadian ten dollar bills. His reasoning being that he had sent an e-mail to the mint criticizing it for lacking in its portrayal of cultural images on the currency it presses and coins. Erstwhile another young student captivated the attention of the other side of the room by trying to prove that a pink shirt and a gray clip-on tie can lend a person an
air of integrity providing that the shirt collar can adequately cache the nubbin
stumps of the tie’s bow corners.
Under the premonition that they where party to a significant event the roomful of men was able to synthesize a warped valour for their coming together. The superbowl became more than a simple excuse to slag Global television for, not
running American commercials, cameramen constantly zooming their cameras towards
billboards during game breaks instead of focusing in on crowd shots and television technicians who inserted advertising periodically onto the game pitch and even transformed the Budweiser blimp into something else by supplanting ads for other companies onto the outline of the blimp.
The superbowl became an event of epic priority in those men’s lives if only for a few hours. They where graced with a comfortable excuse to reunite; a sense of purpose, even though some in the room couldn’t even name any of the players on either team.
Dirty dishes, stains on the shag rug and schoolwork were passing thoughts that couldn’t penetrate the bubble of freedom, which the superbowl had bought with it. Clapping and cheering was optional and dancing gigs permitted. Only fiddling with the remote control was banned.
Two days later in class, I found myself poking at an abrasion that clung to the wrist of a fellow student inquisitively.
“Carpet burn from the superbowl,” he said with a grin and I nodded knowingly.

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