I Can't Really Complain . . . But I Still Do
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Monday, September 12, 2005

Darn-It-All . . . My Kicker Just Threw a Shoe!

Okay here's one for ya . . .

How many Jim Beam jello-shots would it take to get Monday Night Football's John Madden safely onboard a Delta cross-country red-eye flight? Strangely enough the Applied Science Department Fantasy Football league at the New Jersey satellite campus of Harvard University recently posed this very same question to all of its dues-paying members and the general consensus was that it would be easier to convince Santa Claus to go on a crash-course diet than it would be to get the beloved Mr. Football anywhere near a departing airplane.

Fire up the bus!

Now I'm certainly no expert, but I'm pretty sure that we used to play a game that was very similar to Fantasy Football only we called it Dungeons & Dragons. I still get goosebumps when I think about all of the hobgoblins and orcs that my Class 2 Paladin slayed with the Enchanted Crossbow of Elvendorf. Those were the days - when a geek was a geek and a jock was a jock. Now it appears that the lines are getting a tad bit blurred.

The most heard phrase on high school campuses across the country is no longer "Hey, can I borrow your IPod for homeroom?" or "Can you see my thong in these jeans?", instead you're much more likely to hear something like this coming from the football practice field, "Dude, I can't wait to get home and check out how my fantasy team did this weekend."

Unfortunately, the bizarre stat-lust that descends upon America like a blanket of mix-matched scores every Fall knows no age-limits. I can't even begin to count the number of times that I've had to wait patiently while the the old guy down the hall re-inserts his teeth so he can tell me all about how he was going to bench his quarterback, but changed his mind at the last minute and thank goodness he did, because the rookie left-hander threw for 5 touchdowns and ran for another 3, carrying his fantasy team to yet another thrilling come-from-behind victory.

And for my money, the most distressing part of this rabid Fantasy Football trend has to be the all-but guaranteed lameness of the team names. I'm pretty sure they did an official tally recently and darned if the team name "Dave's Destroyers" didn't register 229,000 hits in less than an hour. "The Microsoft Marauders" was a close second. You don't even want to know what the third place name was.

Try and remember that there are 2 "P"s in "Power Puffs" when you engrave that league championship trophy . . . okay!

Now in all fairness - I have actually participated in a Fantasy Football league before and I do remember having a limited amount of fun for about the first day and a half. I was really enjoying myself right up to the point where my team had to play their first game. Everything after that was a relentless blur of spastic statistical analysis and overt dorkiness so intense that it would probably have made Bill Gates seem downright cool. I became a hideous shell of my former self - one part Dan Dierdorf, one part Frank Gifford and a little bit of that guy in the movie "The Waterboy". Trust me, it wasn't pretty.

Hopefully we haven't ruffled too many feathers here today. I guess the key to Fantasy Football success is to strike a balance between real life and fantasy life. Either that or total willingness to forsake any and all aspects of your previous life in a vain and hopeless attempt at complete devotion to the game.

I think you can actually buy those little plastic trophies at Super-Walmart . . . if it makes you feel any better.

I feel better already.

Ben O.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

I can't believe I'm going to be first again!! And I don't know why I am even commenting on this one because I have no idea what you are talking about! Is this what you were doing when you were supposed to be completing the test in your "made for TV, economics course"? Love you, MOM

7:39 AM  
Blogger Ben O. said...

Everyone - say hello to Mom.

She is harassing me about an TV Economics course I stealthily avoided doing.

With all the grief I've taken over the years for ditching on that course, it probably would have been easier just to do the actual course work.

Go figure

Ben O.

9:20 AM  
Blogger trinamick said...

Always do your homework, Ben! (My mother nagged me about mine all through college!)

I've never gotten into fantasy football. I don't know enough about real football to be any good, I'm afraid. Besides, I have too much TV to watch to worry about any other fantasy worlds.

9:22 AM  
Blogger Terri said...

You tell 'im, Mom! hehe
Yep we got fantasy football over in Ireland too - for soccer, that is. It's amazing to see the same spreadsheet open on all the guys' PC's and how fast they minimize it when someone walks past, so they can pretend to be working.
Of course, this being Ireland, there's money riding on it all too. Needless to say lunchtime conversation is pretty predictable.

PS What the hell is TV Economics?

10:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What was the cost of that TV economics course??? Dad

10:52 AM  
Blogger Scott said...

I've purposely stayed away from fantasy football because of the effect it had on my friends, who went from fans of one team to fans of players, and had them rooting for ones defense but for the other's quarterback. Forget it, I'll stick with my fruitless but hopeful Cowboys, the choice of the old generation.

11:18 AM  
Blogger kari said...

Football rocks! REAL football. Thanks for swinging by the blog Ben O.

11:28 AM  
Blogger Ben O. said...

Hey everyone - a rare appearance from Dad. He is still upset that I took a course and didn't give it my all. I actually don't know how much it cost, but I would gladly pay it now to make the whole thing go away. Thanks for commenting Dad.

Terri - that is funny to hear that they guys over in Ireland are just as addicted to the fantasy thing as we are over here. BTW - the course was an Economics course where I had to check out video tapes of the lectures and do the course work on my own time. You can see how easy it would be to slip up on that one.

Scott - I'm a Cowboys fan too - I thought they actually looked decent on Sunday in San Diego.

Later - Ben O.

11:37 AM  
Blogger NYPinTA said...

I have issues with regular footboll (american kind) alone, let alone fantasy football.
A friend of mine got into it a few years back. I thought it was silly then. He couldn't do things because he had to watch draft picks and such. Whatever.

1:15 PM  
Blogger Lingo Slinger said...

Hi Mom!!! (Mom's awesome!)

Oh... and Hi Dad too!! Always nice to have a cameo!

This post was hillarious!! Ha ha ha!! Dave's Destroyers!!! The confusion of it all... Dungeons & Dragons... Wow, never thought i'd hear that name again. I totally remember that game! Okay, now that i've openly admitted just exactly how geeky I am... I'm gonna go now... that way, over there to the door! Bye.

8:47 PM  
Blogger Kathleen said...

Econ on tape? Dear God, I was an Econ major and I still wouldn't have inflicted that on myself! Econ was the most boring subject (yes, says the Econ major) and if I hadnn't had a live person I'm not sure I would have done the homework/exams either!

10:10 AM  
Blogger KayseaLove said...

Yeah Econ was a bore. I'm surprised I even got an A in the class. I thought for sure I would barely pass by with a low C. But, Surprise.

I was never allowed to play D & D growing up because when I was really young my mother watched some special program on tv about people dying from playing D & D. I don’t know what that was all about except it added to the whole allure and mystery.

Oh wait, this post is about fantasy football.

I have a hard time being a spectator of sports, I would rather be participating. Getting into the Fantasy football craze wasn't something I have done either, but I'm glad it appears as if I wasn't missing anything.

Thanks Ben O for stopping by my site and for the birthday wishes.

P.S. Hi Ben O’s Mom and Dad!! *waves*

1:18 PM  

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