I know there is going to have to be some compromise on my part during this entire sale process. I have no control over the Buffalo Bills in any fashion. I can simply choose to watch and care. Nothing is up to me. All I can do is decide if I want them to be an important part of my life or not.
The community of friends I have built around the team and how I interact with them make distancing myself from the franchise problematic. I’m a long way from home. Sports keeps a line open to all of the friends I’ve made. Sports is how I made them in the first place. I’m kind of a flake. It isn’t easy to make friends when you think every single person around you thinks you’re a flake. Sports act as the crutch I sometimes need to interact with people like a normal human being. Hang out in a crowd. Lob a few jokes around. People laugh. Suddenly they are talking to you. Did you just make a friend by talking about how bad Tim Connolly is? Sports!
Where sports and theatre diverge is how much our sports organizations demand our allegiance. Do people wear Irish Classical Theatre jerseys? Is there a Shea’s Mafia? Do we ascribe our self-worth as an audience to a review of the latest performance of Waiting for Godot? Is somebody calling in WGR with all manner of hot takes on that last monologue or aside? Theatre asks for our love in different ways. They’d like for you to be there, be a polite audience, and maybe help out when they need money for renovations.
Professional sport walks into your life and holds you at gunpoint. It is our childhood time killers hijacked by men with long mustaches, top hats and capes. We take something that has brought us immense joy in our lives and give responsibility for it to the wealthiest in our society – those who are the furthest from us in class, empathy, humility, and civics. If you don’t like a little politics in your sports, you can stop reading now. Go in peace.