Do you mind if I call you “you people?” Of course you do. Chances are you won’t like the rest of what I’ve got to say much either, but here goes.
Do sports really matter? I mean, really, truly matter?
The obvious answer is no, but for the sake of argument, let’s go with the more nuanced, yes and no, and then cover it from both sides. Do sports matter to most folks to the extent it does to say, Craig Glazer, your beloved former scribe?
Of course not.
If humanity were as obsessed with sports as the Glaze, society as we know it would come to a halt. There’d be no Internet and what passes for culture would probably resemble the James Caan movie “Rollerball.”
Classical music and the arts would melt away, and we’d be stranded in a world of mundane jobs, action movies, 60s and 70s rock and sex with under-aged girls and women who liked to take their clothes off in public. Oh and comedy.
Learning that the Kansas City Royals won their sixth straight got me thinking today about the role sports plays in society. Including here on KCC.
My working theory long has been that most people really don’t care that much about sports. I’m talking KU, MU, K-State, Sporting, the Chiefs and Royals locally. Other than something along the lines of, “Hey, the Chiefs are in the playoffs, that’s pretty cool.” Or, “The Royals are in last place, here we go again.”
Then we move on to watching Netflix, playing video games, recording the innocuous details of our hum drum lives on Facebook, hunting, fishing, playing Frisbee golf, riding horses, cutting the grass, driving Fiats – you name it.
Am I wrong? ChaCha says so.
ChaChas’s answer: “A whopping 96 percent! Wow, we are a sports dominated society! No wonder athletes make so much!”
I dunno, that sounds really high. If that were the case, wouldn’t sports talk radio be off the hook instead of languishing far behind any number of music formats and news talk?
Maybe if you count parents who trudge out to see their kids gawdawful soccer and baseball games you could get into the 70s or 80s, but 96 percent?
Wiki Answers provides a more realistic estimate of 40 to 64 percent.
I can live with that. But as a sports moderate, it does seem at times that a highly vocal minority end up as the tail wagging society’s dog. Take college sports.
After eight or so months living in Lawrence, it’s abundantly clear to me that KU Basketball literally governs the politics, culture and policies of the University of Kansas and this town. I kid you not.
To my way of thinking, that’s pretty scarey.
You guys would not believe some of the behind the scenes here on that new, multimillion dollar Rock Chalk Park in West Lawrence. And there’s been absolutely no governance or clear-thinking neutral political body to balance things out or insure that the public won’t get screwed on the deal.
Quite the opposite. What news reporting that there’s been gives every indication of it being an insider deal with a carefree cadre of KU officals, a wealthy developer and look-the-other-way city officials leading the charge.
Things in Lawrence are essentially run by a puppet city government, puppet university administration and a meek, rudderless general public.
How can any thinking class person truly know when to hop on or off of the team’s woebegotten bandwagon? It’s a lose-lose deal.
Unless you cock back and tell yourself it really doesn’t matter. Which it doesn’t.