I consider myself to be an armchair sports fan. In reality I'll watch most things - and often get accused of watching the most inane 'rubbish'; although that is just a matter of opinion; and usually it's my wife's (and so often, I guess, in the cold light of day, she's right - just don't tell her!). It comes with the 'benefit' of having Sky and paying a ridiculous amount of money every month to Mr Murdoch. Now we even have HD, so we can throw even more money his way.
As friends will know, rugby is my first game. You see, I know a little bit about it and played it (to a very poor level) some years ago. As I've got a bit fitter of late, I still see myself playing, but in reality that would be a very bad idea, a bad idea indeed! At my age the body just takes so much longer to recover and I really don't fancy bruised ribs, black eyes etc etc.....
I'm also patriotic, so when the football game was on last night (England vs Algeria), I settled down in front of the television with the family to watch it. Home cinema system blasting the sound, making it feel a little more 'real' and in glorious HD...large glass of wine poured ready to see England show the Algerians how to play football.
As we know, the goals never came and what was served up was, apparently, dross. I say apparently, as I lost interest before half time. So much so that I retreated to the study, with another glass of wine to try to do some studying. I got distracted with music and other stuff, but I had absolutely no interest in the football. Does this reflect badly on me? When my home nation is playing, should I be watching or at least showing an interest?
Today, was a very different kettle of fish. RUGBY....First thing there was New Zealand vs Wales and then Australia vs England. Later on, and after I post this, I will have a little bit of a dilemma; it's Argentina vs Scotland and England vs Canada, the latter in the Churchill Cup Final. I have Scottish roots, in the distant past (grandmother) and have always supported England. However, I suspect that game will be an absolute corker. I will have to record one and watch the other.
I sat captivated watching the rugby of earlier. Now this week, England put in a great performance, much to my surprise. But even last week, when the performance was dire, I watched it all. Watched it, criticised, got involved, emotionally attached, had a go at the referee, the whole nine yards. You see, when it comes to rugby, I will watch the dullest of draws and still find something beautiful about the game, something technical in it that makes it all worthwhile. I just don't get that with football.
So, as long as there is rugby on, my mind will be somewhere else, other than the round-ball antics going on in South Africa. I get chastised at work for not knowing what's going on in the football and strange looks when I say I'm bored with it and really can't be bothered. However, come next year, when the Rugby World Cup is on in New Zealand, I will be excited, be emotionally attached, watch as many games as possible.....and become even more of a rugby bore....
Rugby; proper sport. At it's best.