First Posted: 2/3/2009
Sports have always had a place in my life, just as music has.
Bowling was the closest I made it to a formal team, with my team placing third in the state in our youth handicap division. We were first until the final weekend of competition.
Never making it onto a formal school team, but being told by coaches on a number of occasions that if I had just had a little more earlier training I would have made the cut, I took the opportunity to play in rec league sports as an adult. I first was part of a couple of volleyball teams, and then took my turn on a softball league.
I have always been very competitive, and I hate to lose, like most people.
As a spectator, the competitiveness also has surfaced on numerous occasions, just like it did Sunday during the Super Bowl.
Growing up, I can hear my dad like it was yesterday, They cant hear you screaming at the television.
It became a frequent statement from him as I would holler at the Duke basketball players and the members of the Dallas Cowboys, my two favorite teams.
I knew they couldnt hear me, but it was my hope by some sort of ESP that the message would get through to them some way, somehow. And sometimes it did, or at least thats what I thought when things went the right way.
Sunday was no different.
I chose the Steelers for my team to root for, since the Cowboys didnt come close to making it. My rationalization for Pittsburgh is that I was born in Pennsylvania, so I have the closest connection with them. Ive never been west of the Mississippi, so Arizona is a distant place to me.
(Dont ask why I chose the Cowboys as a youth to pull for the rest of my life. Im not sure where the drive came from, but thats my team anyway, and the Carolina Panthers if they arent playing Dallas.)
But back to the Super Bowl.
I wasnt watching alone. The fire department has a gathering every year complete with more food than an army could eat to get us through the night.
On several occasions, I found myself hollering at the players, and the refs a couple of times as well, although I knew they couldnt hear me.
And as the end of the game came to a suspenseful rising, I not only was screaming at the players, I think I put some nice bruises on my hands as I banged on the table with disbelief first, and then with satisfaction as the final score came out in my favor.
No bidding, or gambling, has to take place to get me riled up. And Im sure that goes for others who find the competitiveness enthralling.
Maybe I dont get my exercise on the field, but I sure enjoy jumping up and down at home.
Wendy Byerly Wood is the associate editor of The Mount Airy News. She can be reached at [email protected] or 719-1923.