Wait a minute, someone says, football is only a game like all sports. As such its losses and victories are trivial compared with the losses and sufferings and victories in real life. Think of the loss and trauma experienced by a child in Africa, for example, who witnesses the rape and massacre of its family members. That is true, soberingly true, terribly true. And yet sports in their place continue to teach valuable lessons that can also be applied in other areas of our lives. When I enter a restaurant full of fans clad in various colored jerseys piling in, so enthralled and enthused by what's occurring on specific wide screens, I shake my head in amazement at the utter meaninglessness of it all. Unless, of course, it's the Giants. Then, on some level, it becomes surprisingly meaningful all of a sudden. I ask myself, self, do you suppose their teams are as beloved to them as mine is to me? No, it can't be.....or can it? So if I have little reason to be happy concerning the Giants this week or this month, or this season, maybe I can share in another fan's happiness. Maybe I can rejoice with those who have cause for rejoicing this week or month, or season. And maybe I can mourn with those who have cause to mourn, even for completely different and more serious reasons both here and continents away.
Even as I write this a baseball fan was murdered by a rival fan in a West coast city following a sports contest represeting a major rivalry. When they heard some asked, "Who won?" After thinking a moment I have to answer, "No one, no one won. They all lost. We all lost, because a life was lost, senselessly, a life was lost that won't ever be replaced. Just ask his family and friends. And start with his mother.
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