Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Today is the day where everyone watches football and it reminds me that I don't like football and that my kids are copying me in this dislike. The issue is I want them to like sports. I don't want them to grow up never finding out for themselves whether they like it or not. I have decided to try and get into it to try to get them to make their own decisions. Here is a special guest post from Dave Taylor at GoFatherhood.com about a different kid of football. Enjoy!
I don't know what kind of crossed DNA we had when he was conceived, but neither my ex nor I are particularly into sports, either playing or watching, yet my 13yo son is quite the athlete and fan. Truth is, I'm just not hugely competitive and as someone born in England, most American sports leave me bored to tears with the incessant ad breaks and 150 person teams full of specialists who can kick, run, pass, block or do the end-zone dance, but little else. How that's a sport escapes me.
But I also realize that when I was growing up, my Dad was not into any sports at all, even though he was quite a decent soccer player in London when he was in his teens and early twenties. Then the war showed up, he played against top-league professionals, pressure to earn money arose, and, well, he rapidly lost interest in sports.
That was his decision. But mine? Whether or not I'm an avid fan, I want my son -- and my daughters! -- to have the option of being into sports by exposing him to as many different teams as possible. Heck, he's quite the young athlete himself, alternating between basketball and lacrosse depending on the season. What teams does he support? Basically whatever the adults around him support. So that means the British Premier League soccer team the Tottenham Hotspurs because of my support of the team and the Broncos and Chiefs (confusingly!) because of us being in Colorado and his Mom having been born in Kansas City.
I've been to lots of live sports and they can be quite fun. I was particularly surprised by a Colorado Avalanche game that my son and I attended a while back that was way more fun than I expected! Baseball is more hit and miss and while I enjoy the "great American pastime" I always go to games prepared to be bored for at least one stretch of the game. And a no-hitter? Yaaawwwwnnn.
But I've always been a big fan of soccer, especially World Cup soccer, and even more so in the last 5-10 years or so. I don't know that I'd say I'm rabid or even avid, but I have a Spurs sweatshirt and team case for my iPhone. When they play and it's broadcast, I get up early to watch the matches, including when they get a real drubbing as they did last weekend from Manchester City. Yech. Does that make me fanatical?
My son definitely enjoys watching soccer matches with me, and when we can, I'll take him to a sports bar to get the social, audience experience. And he's clearly more of a sports fan than I am, happy to turn on a basketball, football, baseball or lacrosse game too. It's the least I can do, raising a boy. And the fact that my daughters enjoy an occasional sporting event? That's just a lovely bonus.