The Superbowl: knock yourself out

So does anyone think someone’s going to get knocked out during this year’s Superbowl? It’s happened before. And frankly, I’m surprised it doesn’t happen more often. Just like that latest disgrace with our prisoners of war.

I mean, consider the similarities: both the military world and the sports world are nothing but teams of hyper-emotional men who are fixated on winning at any cost.

Men hyper-emotional? Haven’t you got that backwards? It’s women who are the emotional ones. Yeah right. Anyone who says men aren’t emotional hasn’t seen a game. Or a fight. What do you think motivates the players, the soldiers – the calm, cool voice of reason? Thinking for oneself, should this be possible, is openly discouraged on both the playing field and the killing field; success of the team depends on uncritical obedience.

The very structure of the league/legion is irrational: ‘the enemy’, the guys you are expected to beat, have never done anything to you and there’s little proof they ever will. Hell, the enemy changes at the flick of a hat – excuse me, a dollar: players are traded like the performing commodities they are, today’s good buddy is tomorrow’s target; and lest we forgot, the Gulf War reminded us that any nation’s soldiers are really just mercenaries. (Hell no, we won’t go, we won’t fight for Texaco! Did you notice when announcers started saying Molson Leaf Hockey?) Given such a vacuum of rationality, no wonder the men are in emotional overdrive most of the time.

Oh but I can hear the coaches protesting: ‘We always say winning isn’t everything, it’s how you play the game!’ Well, coach, actions speak louder than words: who gets the applause, who gets the trophy, who gets the money – the loser?

And how do they play the game? Like the real men they’re taunted to be – with all the aggression they’ve got. And if testosterone, and ten years of Ninja Turtles and big-boys-don’t-cry, and another ten years of how-far-d’ya-get isn’t enough, then put back a coupla six packs and pump some steroids to bring out the beast in you.

Oh sure, there are rules – don’t forget fouls and the Geneva Convention. Yeah right. Let’s get serious. The only rule is Don’t-Get-Caught.

So why the surprise when the players do exactly what they’ve been trained to do: hate and hurt (and kill), for no real reason, and not care about it.

I mean, what do you expect at a cockfight?


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