The hard truth about being an avid sports fan.

Given my most recent post on Tom Brady, I wanted to speak about watching and following sports. Right now, we have the World Cup happening and it is definitely going to be a hell of an event to watch even though fans don’t seem too excited about it being in Qatar, from what I know so far. Not sure what country all of you are pulling for but I don’t have high hopes for the US. As someone who is now a casual sports fan, I think Argentina likely wins it.

However, I wasn’t always like this.

I used to be an Avid Sports fan. NFL, College Football, Soccer, MMA, Basketball, and you name it. In my teens through my early-twenties, I knew sports stats like the back of my hand. When I was younger, I even wanted to play football but after an injury, my parents pulled me out and would not let me play again. Growing up in a small Podunk place, sports kept life exciting and I still remember those highs I got from watching certain sporting events. Perhaps the one that sticks with me most is when the Giants beat the Patriots, the perfect season that was not meant to be…. Even now, as more of a sports casual, I still get those highs from some sports like the UFC.

As I entered my twenties and could go out to drink, I started to seek community through being into sports. Since I grew up in the south, college football was massive. You drink on Saturdays, chow down some junk food, and then watch a bunch of men in helmets and shoulder pads crash into each other. I thought I was winning in life by being an avid sports fan and being into all of these sports. Overtime, I started to realize a very uncomfortable truth.

Being an avid sports fan was destroying my dating life and my overall value.

Objectively, the beers on Saturday and the junk food were adding up. I was putting on the pounds and so were most of the people I knew. Most attractive girls were not chowing down the junk food while getting shit faced drunk most of the times. I started to also realize that going to the sporting events itself was somewhat chaotic at times as you would deal with crazy drunks and even seeing the game itself was sort of tough if you didn’t have good seats. Looking back at it, I only tailgated because I wanted to fit in, not because I genuinely liked it.

Finally, the company you kept as an avid sports fan was depressing to say the least. If you work in any typical office job full of average bros, you know the type. Knows every sports stat but can’t talk to a girl at a bar unless he is crazy drunk and even then, ends up harassing “hitting on” the bartender or the waitress. The kind of guy who will actually sit down and watch ESPN to see what some buffoon who has never played the sport they are talking about “analyst” has to say. I mean yeah, I care about the UFC opinion of this guy here. In case you could not pick up on that, it was sarcasm.

However, as an avid sports fan, that is your company. You are largely surrounded by people that drink a lot, eat a lot of junk food, memorize useless stats, spend money going out to pointless sporting events in the summer where bugs bite at you, and get way too emotional over what others do. I can go on and on about how awful the company was but the bottom line, it was killing my game. In most cases, women go for the avid sports fan as a provider or what some say “a beta buck”. Yeah, they can have the beer gut or Dad Bod husband who passionately flips out when they have truly settled down in life.

The more I think about it, the more being an avid sports fan became synonymous with being that provider. I did not realize it at the time but being an avid sports fan was so in line with becoming that beta buck, it was almost training you for it. That whole time, you just see men younger and more athletic than you shining and then live vicariously through them. You are brought in and made to feel like a cog in the machine rather than a wild and ambitious soul. Add in the food that fattens you up as you pour your emotions into a ball game. For a young man or even any single guy with ambitions, this is no place to regularly be.

Just think about how much time you actually lose.

The average NFL game runs around three hours with the majority of it being commercials. Now let’s further break down when NFL and College Football games happen. Most of them start at around noon and can run practically all day. If you are a day gamer hunting for quality, that has pretty much destroyed your entire weekend. Imagine what you could have actually done with that time though. Day gamed? Talked to some hot girls instead of the 5s and 6s in the mixed sports fan groups? Worked on your own business so you don’t have to rely on a 9 to 5?

You fill in the rest but you could have done so much in those countless hours rather than sit in front of the TV and watch ads. Some could say that you can go to a bar to watch an NFL game and meet hot girls. Well, it doesn’t exactly work that way. Most hot girls are not exactly going to dive bars or bars in general to watch sporting events unless they are with their boyfriends. As you can see, complete waste of time. As I have gotten older, I prefer to watch the games by myself so you can actually appreciate the game as opposed to the loud emotional drunks.

Plus, the company you keep sucks.

Let’s go back to the kind of person who is likely to be an avid sports fan. We are talking about your average passive aggressive corporate drone. The kinds of guys who probably married their “high school sweetheart” and were “the man in college” The kinds of guys who peaked early and now dread every day of their lives after college. The kinds of guys who are likely to pose as your friend but pounce on your girl at the first chance.

I mean think about the kind of guy that is willing to throw their entire weekend away just to watch sports. You will tell me that most men do this but let’s talk about “most men”. “Most men” will never crack 10 lays in their life. “Most men” will marry before their peak years and then likely get divorced as well. You don’t want to be like “most men” because “most men” live miserable lives and are in unhappy marriages. Now add in the emotional vulnerability due to living vicariously through others, you have a recipe for disaster. Avid sports fans are usually guys that peaked a long time ago and just need to live vicariously through younger men now.

However, for all of your sports fans out there, there is a fine line.

I am not telling you to be a total shut in and refuse to watch sports for good. In fact, being this closed off from mainstream society will make you un-relatable and a weirdo. I am telling you to be a casual and just go from there. No need to watch the entire NFL regular season, just watch the Superbowl and you have something to talk about with most people. No need to watch every soccer match, just watch the World Cup and you can relate to people. In fact, even for the World Cup ignore the group stages and only watch when it is getting good. You can watch the ten minute highlights on Youtube anyways to save yourself some time.

Plus, it is always better to play the sport than watch it anyways.

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