Support Your Team

I love sitting on the couch holding my son. There’s nothing better in the world. Only one problem–like his dad, Wolfe’s body temperature is “the sun.” We both end up sweaty messes.

This has always been an issue for me. When I exercise, I need three outfits. One for working out, one for cool down (regardless of showering), and one for when I finally stop sweating an hour later. I’m a sweater.

This means I need a lot of replacement t-shirts. So while I don’t always like it when people give me stuff, in the case of t-shirts, I love getting garments just to wear while I’m holding my perspiring son or soaking up my own post-workout perspiration. However, there is a downside.

See, I’m a guy who likes playing a lot of sports, but the only sports I really watch are boxing and UFC, and I don’t even consider myself a fanatic about those. However, the t-shirts I get from my mom, wife, mother-in-law, and miscellaneous acquaintances usually feature football or basketball or hockey teams. I like football, but the last time I watched a whole game Boomer Esiason was the QB for the Cincinatti Bengals (he may still be, but I don’t think so). I’m not sure I’ve ever watched a baseball game–too boring–and while I like hockey in the abstract, I grew up in central Ohio and we didn’t get a pro hockey team until it was too late for me to really develop a fan’s attachment.

So I have a selection of sports-themed t-shirts I wear, but I know nothing about the teams emblazoned on them.

The other day we had a guy from Terminix spraying our basement. I was busy holding Wolfe to keep him calm. When the guy stopped in the middle of explaining the difference between a centipede and a millipede (number of legs!) to exclaim, “How did you get to be a Seahawks fan around here?”, at first I had no idea what he was talking about.

Then I realized I was wearing the Seattle Seahawks shirt I got for Christmas a couple of years ago. I mumbled something about how I wasn’t exactly a fan, somebody gave me the shirt, and I doubted they’d make it to the World Series this year. He laughed like I was the funniest thing since Bill Cosby and then shouted “Go Eagles!” on his way out the door.

The next day I had an appointment with a physical therapist. Besides the awkwardness (for me–I’m not a touchy-feely guy) of having another man sitting next to me on one of those doctors’ tables while massaging my neck and shoulders, I also had to put up with a barrage of questions about the Flyers’ off-season trades. I realized I was wearing a t-shirt bequeathed to me by my wife. I hated to disappoint the guy, and the conversation was better than just listening to him breathe in my ear, so I said I didn’t really keep up with them in the off-season. (Luckily, it is the Flyers’ off-season–I checked later.) He allowed as how it was tough to keep up with the news, then proceeded to give me the run-down of all the roster changes they’ve made since…oh, the beginning of time.

The point here is, long conversations with complete strangers about sports I don’t even watch are not my favorite things in the world. In fact, I’d say they make me a little cranky.

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