Why People Are So Into Sports

My whole life, I’ve been surrounded by sports fans, but it's alien to me.

All of my friends and family are into sports–that’s all they talk about any time of the day. But personally, I could never get into it. 

I decided one day that I finally wanted to be a part of the club. I sat down to watch the Lakers play in the season opener of the NBA.

I don’t know how old I was or what year it was, but I remember how tired I got of watching it. I fell asleep 5 minutes into the game, and I think it was still the middle of the afternoon.

After all these years attempting to play in fantasy football leagues, watching preseason predictions on ESPN, and doing anything to fit into sports conversation, I never understood why people enjoyed watching 10 players dribble a ball back and forth for three hours.

But recently, I think I learned why.

What I have noticed over the years of studying the pattern of sports fans is how similar it is to watch a show on television.

A fan of the Houston Rockets watches the Rockets every week they play, as a fan of The Walking Dead would watch the Walking Dead’s new episode every week. A fan of the Houston Rockets loves to see James Harden play every week, as a fan of The Walking Dead loves to see what Rick Grimes is going to do every week.

A Houston Rockets Fan is passionate and prideful about being a Rockets fan, as a fan of The Walking Dead is passionate and prideful about being a consistent viewer of The Walking Dead. A Rockets fan after watching goes into school or work the next day and talks about what happened at the game the day before, as a fan of The Walking Dead talks about what happened in the last episode, the morning afterward.

Both have spoilers, both have people watching since day one, both have favorite characters and players, both have talk shows discussing the events unfolded before them, both have similarities and things in common.

I don’t understand what being a Rockets fan is like, but if it is similar to being a fan of the Walking Dead, then being a Rockets fan makes a whole lot of sense to me.

Being a big fan of football, basketball, or whatever kind of sport you like to watch, is like temporarily putting yourself in a whole new world to distract yourself from the real world.

Now, it’s not for everyone, but it’s a pretty incredible thing to those it matters to.

So to all the people who don’t understand sports like me, know that it’s completely normal to not enjoy watching the college football games this weekend.