I Love Sports . . . but not THIS much
I think fanaticism is great. Everyone needs a healthy obsession to get more out of life.
Those who know me best know that I’m one of the biggest Laker fans out there.
My buddy always reminds me of the time we were watching an intense tape-recorded game (pre-DVR era) in our dorm room our freshman year in school. He had fallen asleep only to be woken up in the 4th quarter to the sound of hollering and rousing applause which is otherwise normal when sports is involved—if it wasn’t for the fact that I was the only other person in the room and the standing ovation was from me. Just me.
Several years later when the Lakers lost game 4 of the 2008 NBA Finals against the Celtics after blowing a 24 point lead, I literally went on a rampage. I stormed out of our apartment and started punching the walls and screaming into the air while attempting to suppress my anger the best I could by biting my fists. With shame I admit that I lost my salvation for a good 30 minutes that night and my wife was horrified. God bless her soul.
Over the years, my wife has played a big part in toning my fanaticism down, possibly for the better. Now that I have a baby boy whose nap and sleeping schedules run through Laker games, I have gotten really good at screaming into pillows and silent fist-pumping to suppress my frustration and joy respectively.
So this brings me to the sad story of Bryan Stow.
Bryan is currently in a medically induced coma after suffering a brutal attack at the hands of some idiots who didn’t agree with his choice of garb. This was not a gang fight though it sounds like one. Bryan is a San Francisco Giants fan and he thought he would show his support for the team by wearing a Giants jersey . . . to Dodger Stadium. This sounds like a bad idea but people do it all the time and when others say “You’d better watch your back! You got a lotta nerve wearing that here!” it’s normally done in good humor.
Bryan was attacked after the game at Dodger Stadium and now his children are on the verge of losing their father. It is senseless and tragic.
I love basketball but not this much.
It’s scary to think that things like this take place almost every day. Think of all the horrible things that are done to other human beings in the name of defending a flag, a set of values, or whatever it is that we choose to place our allegiance or trust in.
As much as we want to identify with Bryan Stow in this story, the lesson is not “be careful what you wear to the ball park.” It is rather, “beware of the outcome of your fanaticism.”
Think about your obsessions and consider whether or not one or more of these cause more harm than good… to you and those around you. It might be time to make some changes.
The Dodger fans who beat Bryan Stow might have benefited from a good, serious confrontation from one of their loved ones when they punched their HD TV after every loss. (I admit that this is a major assumption on my end but maybe not a very far-fetched one)
It’s often painful for me to suppress my emotions during Laker games but for the sake of my marriage, I’ll take the emotional constipation.