For twelve years I was on the wagon. I stayed clean and sober for twelve long years. Yes, for twelve (count them) years I did not watch any televised sports.
What would cause a person to engage in such a hermit’s life, you ask? When Susan and I were married I gave up televised sports for my wife. She comes from a family that loved to watch sports on television, particularly the Aggies. Not enjoying such entertainment herself, she always felt as if she was left out when her family would gather around the television to cheer on their team. I never wanted her to feel like that in her own home, so when we were married I traded in ESPN for HGTV.
For twelve years I listened to sports talk on AM radio. For twelve years I read about sports in the newspaper. For twelve years I listened as men at church would talk about the big game that was going to be on television Sunday afternoon, … but, for twelve years I did not watch any televised sports.
And then one day the devil in blue jeans knocked at my door. Wes Kenny sponsored his NFL Picks contest on his blog. And, at a moment when my willpower was weakened and Susan was away from the house, I watched the Dallas Cowboys on television. “Just a little sip won’t hurt.” “Just one puff never killed anyone.” Woe is me, I was undone. I broke my Nazaritic vow.
The good news is that I led in Wes’ contest most of the NFL season and was barely edged out at the end. The bad news is that I can’t look at myself in the mirror…
Well, the preceding is a public service announcement for anyone else who has spent an extended time on the wagon and might be suffering from temptation due to an office pool, NCAA brackets, or a contest similar to the one that ambushed me. You do not have to sell your soul, there is another option. You do not have to watch televised sports, you can make your football picks using the information you pick up at Addicts Sports.
And, if you are tempted, just remember my tale of woe and sorrow. One sip was enough to get Socrates. One puff did horrible things to Richard Pryor. And one football game brought shame into my life and marriage. Just say “No” to televised sports.