A world without football?

Not long ago, Kelly mentioned how she found it interesting that I could hold my own in a conversation about football, despite not being a fan or even following the sport. Really, it’s not that difficult. You pick up things here and there, and learn to respond with vague generalities to various statements.

“Think Farve is going to end his starting streak?”

“With the way these things go, who knows?”

You know, stuff like that. You generally can’t miss getting the local scores and that can help, especially when there are outliers.

But I am not a football fan, and I don’t think I ever have been. Baseball is enough to keep my occupied. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed playing football when I was a kid. But I can’t stand it when football is on TV. In part, this is pure rebellion. My parents were (and still are) big football watchers and the Sundays of my youth were filled with enough football to last me a lifetime. Then, too, Monday Night Football (at least when I lived on the west coast) tended to preempt my favorite shows, and that didn’t earn it any sympathy from me.

I never understood the football pre-season, either. They begin their practices in the hottest part of summer and then play scrimmage games in which a large number of players injure themselves and are out for the season. Add to that the price of football tickets, the length of the games relative to the actual action (I think I once saw a stat saying that a 3 hour broadcast could be boiled down to 15 minutes of action–but perhaps the same is true for baseball), the seemingly constant unsportsmanlike conduct of the players, and I would be perfectly happy in a world without football.

As it happens, such a world may be on it’s way. An article caught my eye today, indicating that there may be a players lockout in 2011. Players are being urged to save at least 3 paychecks this year to weather the storm. I look upon the idea of such a lockout with eager fascination. What would the world be like without professional football? What programming would fill the void left on Sundays and Monday night? I wouldn’t have to come into work on Monday and listen to everyone around me talk about how terrible the Red Skins are, or how fantastic Dallas is. I would not longer have to wing conversations about the latest round of games because there would be no games.

Of course, there would still be college football, but I can tolerate that because it barely enters my consciousness.

In fact, I can think of only one downside to a world without football: we would miss out on those clever ads that run during the Superbowl.

But that is a sacrifice that I am willing to make.