Tuesday, November 13, 2007

The Better Half

(ESPN has Erin Andrews, FOX has Pam Oliver, ABC has Michelle Tafoya and What Would Oakley Do? has Becca. Please join me in welcoming our first-ever sideline reporter/guest columnist. "The Better Half" will appear in this space each and every week and will feature the best, brightest and prettiest sports-related musings in all of the land in an attempt to explain what our girlfriends and wives are thinking when we ask them if they want to order wings before the Giants game starts.)

Episode 1:
The Better Half
Watching Sports When You Would Rather Not Be

It's not that I don't like sports. Or going to games. Or watching them on TV. It's just that I would prefer that I didn’t do those things. Most of the time. If I were actually asked about it, I wouldn’t choose to spend the day in a parking lot in New Jersey drinking cans of Keystone Light with a bunch of bald men in ill-fitting mesh shirts only to go sit in a cold stadium where something exciting happens every 20 minutes (1 football minute > 20 football minutes). Because, it's Sunday, and I want to take a walk or see a movie or buy things I don't need. Or watch Bring It On while struggling through the crossword puzzle in the Sunday Magazine until I go outside and get ice cream before making bow-tie pasta and turkey-sausage for dinner and getting ready for bed. I mean, I’ve got three episodes of America's Next Top Model on my DVR and don’t really know what you mean when you say this might be Chad Pennington’s last start for the Jets. So, I just want to sit in a warm apartment and drink free, non-$4.50 water with my friends, wondering if it’s okay to think Michael Cera is adorable, if a little young.

But, somehow (actually not somehow as in I don’t know how, but because of my boyfriend) I've ended up watching or attending more sporting events over the last few years than I have in my entire lifetime. And I haven't minded. I mean, no, that's a lie. I've minded a lot of the times, but I've also come to really enjoy it some of the time too. Even the Keystone Light. Who knew guzzling cheap domestic beer in a parking lot and tossing the old pigskin around could be such a blast! It probably helps that I am awesome at throwing and catching a football.

I even voluntarily had my birthday at Shea Stadium this year. The Mets beat the Oakland A’s really, really badly and “Happy Birthday Becca” got shown on the big screen out in center field by the Apple. I think that is like the sports equivalent of having your wedding announcement in the Sunday Styles section.

So, ladies and gentlemen, but mostly ladies, my goal is to bring you the other side of the story each and every week. The better half of the story. There will be no play-by-play, statistics, score analysis (I don’t even think that is something), but rather I might, for example, explain the twin masterpieces that are Jose Reyes’s cheekbones. Or how it makes me feel when he steals a base (awesome, flushed, inspired). I will also discuss the highs and lows of my man’s sporting life (and my own love/hate brand of sports fandom) from a female point of view. From the indescribable feeling of seeing a Wright hit make it over the fence when the Mets are down in the 8th inning or how funny it is to see Eddy Curry's bulbous behind scurry across the court and make a basket to the frustration when you know that on some nights you are a distant second to whatever is on ESPN. Anyway, you get the idea. It’s a roller coaster of a ride, my friends, and there’s more drama than the writers of Gossip Girl would know what to do with.

I’ll see you next week. Same time. Same channel.


Mike Mah said...

Did the Mets beat Oakland 10-2 on a Sunday? I was at that game, perhaps with a poor view of the Jumbotron. Speaking of the Mets, Better Half, do you think Omar Minaya will trade Lastings Milledge to my Oakland Athletics as it is so often rumored? As part of a package for a pear-shaped Joe Blanton or Dan Haren the full-bearded Indie-Rocker? I've been trying to get women to watch sports with me for the better part of my life. Results have been mixed, intrinsic differences implied. Since you won't be doing statistical analysis, and seem to be drawn to the sheer physicality of sport, my nickname for you will be "Scout", like the Harper Lee tomboy protagonist, as are termed the unheralded professionals of all major sports that watch and wonder as boys do as they will do.

The Better Half said...

You are mistaken, my wordy friend! And quite frankly I am a little upset that you think I would write solely about physical things such as cheekbones and posteriors. But I will accept Scout as a nickname. She wore such cute overalls.

Mike Mah said...

Friday, June 22, I take it. I was at a Windsor Terrace Cop bar, wondering if my Better Half was allowed inside. She's a good hitter. You should take a look at her, Scout.
I was merely trying to point to the gender-gaps proposed in your excellent post. Where do toleration, sympathy, and genuine appreciation begin or end? And I've seen the cheekbones and the posterior, and they are overt, indeed.

the co-pilot said...

i can't decide what makes me happier. that someone shares my sports-filled life in the same way OR that the A's were mentioned in her very first post...

if billy decides to blow up the team for next year, i will begrudgingly lose chavey if i get to keep nicky swisher and silly jack cust. (and how can you not love jack cust? he looks like gerard depardieu's slow little brother...)

the co-pilot said...

i can't decide what makes me happier - that someone lives sports the same way i do OR that she mentioned the A's in her first post.

if billy blows up the team for next year, i will begrudgingly lose some of the boys...but NOT nicky swisher or silly jack cust. (how can you not love him? he looks like gerard depardieu's mentally challenged little brother.)

knicks game tomorrow night! whee...

The Better Half said...

Well, I will be at the Knicks game tomorrow. Look for a redhead taking notes!