It’s that time of year again. A time when Sundays mean hours sitting in front of the TV, beer in hand, as America’s passion plays out its weekly drama on the screen. A time when we can gather with friends at the bar by 12 noon and not be considered alcoholics. A time when I think to myself, “This season, I’ll pay attention. This season, I’ll actually care about football.” It’s not that football isn’t a fun sport to watch. I enjoy going to the occasional Bills game, tailgating in the parking lot for a few hours, freezing my butt off in the nosebleeds, and doing the walk of shame back to the car after a disappointing loss. I love watching a good play or seeing an amazing replay-worthy catch. I think the Superbowl should be considered a national holiday so that we can all have Superbowl Monday to recover. I love the social aspect of the whole sport that brings nearly all of America together.

Nonetheless, I have yet to truly care about football because I’m still just a fan in training. I didn’t grow up watching much football, and here’s why:
1) my parents weren’t sports fans whatsoever. The only time my family to any sporting events was when one of us was participating in it. Since football fandom wasn’t a part of my childhood, I wasn’t invested in the sport or in any particular NFL team from an early age.
2) I went to an all-girls high school (i.e., no football team). Without the chance to root for own my school in a competitive football game, I missed out on the interscholastic rivalries, the spirit, the pride, the excitement, and even the disappointment, associated with football.
3) I went to RIT (i.e., no football team). See #2.

As a result, it’s hard for me to follow a sport where seemingly faceless players engage in a slow-motion battle, moving up and down the field for 3 hours, constantly knocking each other down then returning to formation until a team is declared a winner and the crowd rejoices after witnessing 11 minutes of total game play. Exciting stuff! It doesn’t help that the Bills make me wanna puke. Thank you, Chris, for giving me a team to root for, but could you have made this any harder on me?

Seriously though, Chris has been doing his best to educate me and keep me engaged throughout the football season. He keeps me updated on his Fantasy teams, including one in which I’m a co-owner (woohoo!) and tries to involve me in the drafting process. Maybe in the end, I just need to follow a team that will hold my interest for most of the season, instead of one that will make me want to tear my jersey off in disgust by halftime.

Perhaps when the Bills win the Superbowl, I’ll be a true fan.