Saturday, September 20, 2008

Taking Your Lumps

As a ravid college football fan, I'm often confronted with skeptical types who believe enthusiasm of that level to be an obvious misplacement of priorities. After reflection, I think such emotional investment in something is neither inherently good or bad. Rather, its one's reactions that determine the dividends of the investment.

For another year, I'll be deep in enemy territory trying to take the talk of LSU fans in stride, especially of the next two days: tomorrow at church, and Monday at work. In addition, I have to eat an LSU-branded piece of meat at Jared's at some point soon. And even though I've wore all my stuff and flown my flags high, I still have to wear orange and blue the next two days and congratualte every football fan who brings the topic up on a great game.

I think I disagree with the dismissive response to such a devastating loss. "Oh, it's just a game." Well, it surely is a game, but it would be obvious self-deception to pretend my emotional investment didn't make it something larger. One can't just sweep that emotion under the rug. And taking my lumps sucks.... big time. I don't like doing it. But life is a great long run of stuff you don't want to do.

In judging whether my investment is misplaced, we have to ask whether the ultimate effect on me is beneficial or or determintal. And I am fairly convinced that we as humans can ALWAYS benefit from a humbling experience. I don't know how 8-year-old Jonny would have taken it. The Braves' annual choking in the postseason reeked enough havock on me back then even without a sea of rival fans around me. But now I know exactly how this will play out for me. And perhaps I have this practice in misplaced priorities to thank for that certainty.

1 comment:

Jack said...

I'm a big fan of self delusion, but you know, that's just me.

Good post.

Keep your chin up. Auburn's a great team and the game could have gone either way. There's a lot of football left to be played.