So Much to Watch

Is it just me or are we becoming spoiled by the number of choices in front of us every day. I love getting the Sunday Seattle Times on my driveway every week. I read the first section first because I’ve always been taught to eat my vegetables before diving into the main course. Since I was a kid the main course for me has always been the sports section. I read that second, followed by Northwest news, arts and then business.

Just inside the front cover of the sports second is a listing of all the sports events on television that day and the next day.  The list takes up a half page on Sundays with all the NFL and NBA games and on Saturday the college games alone make up half the page. If one wanted to, he or she could sit down at 8 a.m. on a Saturday and not get up again until midnight, watching football the entire time.  Sunday is no different. You can start with the NFL at 10 a.m. and watch until after the Sunday Night Game around 8:30 in the evening.  Of course one doesn’t have to do any such thing with “On Demand” television. You can record whatever you want and watch it anytime but my point is that the volume of possibilities is staggering.

Just a few years ago there was a possibility that your favorite college team might not even have their game televised and way back in the dark ages when I was a kid we were lucky to have two college games on Saturday and one local NFL game Sunday to choose from and that was all.

I have a vivid memory of my Uncle Jim and Uncle Louie, avid New York Giants football fans living in Connecticut, climbing onto the roof of the house to change the direction of the antenna to bring in the Giants game on Sundays. In those days if an NFL was wasn’t sold out it would be blacked out on television for a 50 mile radius. They lived within 50 miles or NYC and couldn’t get the games on WCBS, the New York CBS affiliate but could bring them in on affiliate in New Haven, Conn. which was outside the blackout zone. In order to get the New Haven station, one of my uncles had to climb onto the roof and turn the antenna towards New Haven. After the game the other Uncle would go up and move the antenna back so they could watch regular programming on WCBS.   For those two Giants fans the effort was worth it.  That was before Monday night, Sunday Night or Thursday Night football. Sunday afternoon was all you had and you’re local team was all you could watch.

Sometimes I wonder if we were better off then.  All the choices we have today remind me of a buffet line in Las Vegas.  All that food, most of which you don’t need, but you eat it because it’s there.

For Seahawks fans disappointed by the loss last Sunday to the Redskins, having as Thursday night game is a good thing. It’ll give them a chance to erase the bad feeling of losing in just a just a few days. On the other hand if they lose in Arizona, fans will call it a lost week.

One thing I’ve learned from covering sports on television for 35 years and working with the Seahawks for 11 years is that your opponent most weeks may be just as good as you are.  There is parity in NFL by design and it shows itself almost every week. Just because the Redskins had numerous injuries on offense prior to Sunday’s game against Seattle, doesn’t mean the back-up players are chumps.  Everyone in the NFL is a good player which is what makes it interesting.  It also creates an emotional roller coaster for fans but to me that’s what makes being a sports fan worthwhile. If you knew your team was going to win every week it would get boring in a hurry.