Following the Texas Rangers' World Series loss, Dave Tarrant, of the Dallas Morning News, decided to give up sports for a year. "I'm determined to cut my obsession with sports," he wrote on his blog. "I want my life back. ... Haunted by all the time I've spent on the couch watching my team on the tube, I'm turning it off." His e-mails with Michael Kruse, a staff writer at the St. Petersburg Times and a contributing writer for Grantland, detail his his first true test -- his first Sunday without the NFL.
From: Tarrant, David To: Kruse, Michael
This is my first Sunday in self-imposed exile. I'm taking a year off from watching sports. For about 50 years, I've been your average fan, riding the ups and downs of my teams. In my case, it all started in the early 1960s in Pittsburgh. Bill Mazeroski's dramatic bottom-of-the-9th home run beat the Yankees in Game 7 of the 1960 World Series and transformed a city better known for its belching smokestacks and woeful sports teams. The Pirates and Steelers were awful in the 1950s. When I moved to Dallas in my mid-20s, I adopted the colorful weak sisters of the local franchises -- the Texas Rangers and the Dallas Mavericks. No Cowboys for me, thank you. I remained a diehard Steelers fan. Over the years, I followed my four teams -- Pirates, Steelers, Rangers and Mavericks -- through thick and thin. In the late 1980s, when I went to work for a few years in Germany, I checked the box scores every day in Stars and Stripes or the International Herald Tribune.
Welcome to the latest installment of The Triangle’s mailbag, The Bake Shop, in which we try to serve up piping-hot answers to your most burning questions. As always, you can submit a question or observation to us by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Onward!
Q: I have a 3 year old daughter and a 1 year old son. We live outside of Boston. As a native of upstate NY, I like the Yankees, more because I hate the whole Boston-underdog b.s. than because I like the Yankees. Am I a sexist because I don't care who my daughter cheers for but I bought my son NY Yankees and NY Giants clothing?
— Russ C.
Bakes: I love how this question took a sharp turn and veered right off the road. It reads like an LSAT problem as written by Eminem: "If Billy is taller than Margaret and Jack, and Margaret is taller than Richard and Anna, but not Sam, and Sam is the same height as Billy, which came in handy when Billy murdered Sam in cold blood for the love of Anna and then drove around wearing his clothes for a week while chain-smoking, will the dry-cleaning bill cost more or less than the cigarettes?"
Here's the thing. I'm biased, of course, as someone who spent much of the fourth quarter of Super Bowl XLII on the phone with her equally-freaking-out dad. But because the Bake Shop is a judgment-free zone, I won't give you a hard time for depriving your dear, sweet daughter, who I'll bet loves and looks up to her daddy more than anything in the whole wide world, of the unique and lifelong connection that develops between two people who love the same teams. It's no sweat; she might not even grow up to like sports, and she'd probably want to antagonize her little brother by hating his teams even if she did.