There is room to daydream and visualize. I was one of those people who would obsess over my various fantasy sports (baseball, football, basketball). And I did win a decent amount of leagues. Some were lucrative payouts. Unfortunately, it came with another kind of price.
I lived on Yahoo Sports, CBS , and to a much lesser extent, ESPN for my fantasy fixation. It became an obsession. And that is an understatement. I wouldn’t leave my house. I would stare at those live in-game updates like a psycho. I locked myself in my room. I would avoid hanging out with friends. I didn’t answer the phone. No texts. And this was before Smartphones. If I were still involved now, I would be staring at my phone throughout the course of the afternoon. While I am eating some nutritious bar food and drinking cold beer with pals, I would interject with a whiny rant. It would be the height of narcissism and self-indulgence.
Thankfully, I retired from fantasy sports three years ago, after a league win but have still yet to receive payment. It’s a blessing in disguise. Actually it’s just a blessing. I was a shell of a man. I didn’t enjoy life. I gave up social gatherings, football tickets, baseball tickets, concerts, and other events just to stare at a computer. This is not my team. I am not a real-life coach. The team doesn’t care about me anyways. Now maybe your team cares about you? I don’t know! 😉
There is a place to enjoy fantasy. And there is room for it. It’s similar to any type of role-playing or Dungeons and Dragons you used to do, or maybe still partake in. If you use it for good or as a simple hobby that’s one thing. But when you complain about “your” Quarterback not doing well or needing your back-up Running Back to come through with at least 16 points on Monday Night, it can border on dehumanizing. This one is hard to articulate, but there are certain “yours” and “mine” that are completely irrelevant. This is one instance.
On multiple occasions I have seen, otherwise intelligent people, yelling at the screen or at their phone about their team or player letting them down. In privacy that might be ok. But this is in crowded establishments. You are trying to be seen and noticed over something very trivial. It comes off bland and it comes off ordinary. Being ordinary isn’t anything to write home about. I try to avoid judging or making a person feel bad for their hobbies. That’s just it. It’s a hobby. It’s not worth pining over.
The NFL, apparently, has insisted that the major networks post fantasy statistics. It detracts from the game and further commercializes and already commercial sport. It’s just a business. The game is now the commercial. And we have once again volunteered ourselves to become slave to it. Thankfully, it’s one part of the Matrix that I got out of. Before you let another system of control to burden you and make you less of a person than you are truly capable of, think for a moment how much this occupies your life. We are capable of many great things. I am just disappointed that this has become such a business and the big corporations laugh at us behind-the-scenes. That is reality.