Saturday, January 28, 2012

A Girl's Guide To Watching (And Sort of Loving) Sports

In my youth, I was given a gift. That gift was a father who loved to watch sports. It didn't seem like a gift at the time. After all, there were many (well, 5 because we only had 6 channels) things I would have rather been watching other than sports, but guess who dominated the remote control? (Oh, wait. I'm not sure when we got a remote control, but you get my point.)

I've referred to the fact that kids today don't know how good they have it on the entertainment front. We had no iToys, On Demand, or the internet at all. And we only had one rather bulky T.V. It's a miracle we all even made it.

This deprivation though came in handy for me when it came to landing a man. I would like to think that it was my charming nature, my intellect, or even my looks that attracted my husband to me, but really it was probably my knowledge of the Utah Jazz. I had heard my dad and brother talk about the Jazz and watch the Jazz for most of my formative years, and for some reason, I picked up on some of what they were saying, and even began to like to watch the games.

When dating, my husband was pleased as punch that I would sit next to him, watch SportsCenter, and occasionally make a comment that wasn't totally embarrassing.

And I'm not even athletic.

At all.

Yes, I do still enjoy sitting down with my husband to watch an athletic endeavor although not as much as I once did. So now I have to grab at some other aspects of the game to keep my interest alive. So for those of you looking to land a sports fan or keep interest while your husband controls the tube, here is a list of ways girls can watch and enjoy sports.

1. Judge the Uniforms (but don't call them "outfits"... I made that mistake once)

Look at the color, fit, and style. Do you prefer a V neck basketball jersey or a crew neck? Do some athletes look particularly bad or good in their uniform? Decide overall which is the more fashionable team. You can choose to mention these things to your man or not. That's up to your own judgment. My husband sort of likes my side comments about the uniforms, but some may not.

2. Know The Back Story of Athletes

Athletes by and large are interesting characters off the field. If you have access, wikipedia them throughout the game. Know how old they are, if they are dating/married to someone, and how long they've been playing. Are there any scandals surrounding them? These stories provide great side comment material to keep a game (especially a boring one) interesting. For instance, golf was nearly dead to me until Tiger Woods became a scumbag.

3. Play A "He Kinda Looks Like" Game

T.V. sports have a large number of close up face shots. In football you usually have to watch the sidelines. This provides you with a good opportunity to really look at athletes and decide who you know that they look like. It can be someone in your ward, a friend, a relative, a celebrity, or even another athlete. Mention this one to your man definitely. Mine always chuckles, and it fosters playful debate. I will forever be credited with figuring out that Howard Eisley and Brian Grant have the same face.

Howard Eisley

Brian Grant

4. Know The Basic Rules

Alright, I know this is the boring one. But in the end, you don't want to ask any stupid questions particularly if you are dating. If there is a complex rule (like if they are reviewing a play and you're not sure why) go ahead and ask. This is usually a down time in the game so it's a good time to ask.

5. Fill Out a March Madness Bracket

ANYONE can fill out a bracket and do reasonably well; so don't be a killjoy and do it. Have your man do it, and then keep track. We have an anniversary bet that we make each year with this. I always lose, but the process makes watching basketball for 4 days straight bearable.

6. Make Treats For The Big Game

I find food makes everything better.

7. Know That You Hate The Yankees, The Lakers, The Heat, The Cowboys, etc.

There are teams that for one reason or another everyone (except their own particular fans) hates. Know this. It will save you from ever rooting for them accidentally. If your man happens to be a fan of a team that everyone else hates, there may be something wrong with him; if by some miracle there isn't something wrong with him, then I guess you have to be a fan of them too, but I'm sorry if you're in this situation. Liking a team just because they win all the time is a sign of moral weakness (according to my husband).

Follow any or all of these tips, and I can almost guarantee an enjoyable sports watching night (or lifetime even) with your man.


  1. I'm loving this one Lin. You're right; Howard Eisley and Brian Grant do have the same face. I too am glad that I learned a thing or two from our Dad. I actually enjoy the watching of games and filling out the March Madness bracket. I don't expect Brian to start watching Jane Austen with me any time soon though. Maybe I should mention this double standard to him.

  2. I filled out a bracket for college hockey one year at my office and won $50. Gambling, I know, but still, I got really cute new shoes. I also did a bracket for the NFL with a guy I was dating and a bunch of his friends. At the end of the season, turned out I won the bracket. They collectively decided that I didn't actually win because I was a girl and that they just let me fill it our for "fun". Egos.

    Having a little knowledge of the game is vital for surviving hours of sports :) Also, it doesn't hurt that Tom Brady looks great in that "uniform" :)