“Hey, did you see the email I got about the All-Staff Ultimate Frisbee game on Wednesday? Free Pizza and beer, we should go.”
“Um, yeah..I read it. And instantly I envisioned myself with a serious knee injury. But hey, why don’t you put on your sports bra and try it out.”
Growing up in a coach’s household I was raised on American Football and the Wide World of Sports. I could imitate Howard Cosell and give the play by play as good as any professional. And most of the guys I dated prior to getting married were coaches, sports fanatics, or athletes. However, my husband is not a sports guy. So what did we talk about on that first date? I talked about Ken Griffey Jr. and all of the ridiculous injuries he seemed to be having and how much I hated Pay-Rod. The future husband looked at me as if I was speaking a foreign language. He confessed he wasn’t really into sports. He liked baking, riding and fixing old BMW motorcycles, and he liked me for some reason.
I remember the first time I ever took him to a college football game. He said “Ok, I’ll try anything once.” He was bent over laughing most of the time. “When the guy falls down, why does everyone get on their feet and cheer?” He was playing dumb, he’d seen football before. He was just trying to rub in how absurd my obsession with my college team was. Then he did it again. “Oops! He fell down! bahahaha” I think it was his plan. Annoy the wife enough during the game that she will never ask me to come back.
Then there was that autumn of the Red Sox, not the year they won the series, but the year before when they lost to the Yankees. The husband was still working on the Cape. All of Massachusetts was in a Red Sox frenzy. Every night the game was on, he couldn’t escape it, whether at home, or if he was out at a bar having beers with friends. And at every supply house, at every grocery store, with every contractor, he would have to have the baseball conversation. He had to know the players names. I would call and discuss the games with him. One day he said to me “I always thought Garciaparra had a hyphen in it.” Shhh man, don’t give yourself away. He was secretly praying that the Red Sox would lose so he wouldn’t have to stay up late to watch the games anymore. And they did lose, I’m still blaming him.
Guess where my husband spends his time during Super Bowl parties. You guessed it, in the kitchen. He entertains the ladies with his hilarious whit and charm. He makes delectable pizzas and offers them more wine. In the back ground you can hear me and the men screaming obscenities at the refs. And the husband just smiles at me, knowing we are such an odd pair.
Since our move to Germany, I have latched onto a new sport—German Football. The husband seemed to actually get into the Deutschland World Cup frenzy in 2010. I met him downtown to watch a game during the quarterfinals, and when I arrived at the beirgarten I noticed that he and our child had German flag tattoos on their cheeks. He said that the girl who tattooed him was blond and really cute and he couldn’t say no to her. I think he actually liked “Public Viewing” for the beer, not really for the game. But there was a slight glimmer of enthusiasm on his face when the crowd went wild over the winning Tooooooooooooor!
Before you judge my husband as unmanly because of his dread for sports, I can attest that he is the man of my dreams. He can lift a cast iron boiler out of a basement. He can work, a very physical job, for long hours without stopping. He can ride a motorcycle across country and not complain about his butt hurting. He can climb mountains, carry our child, and carry a backpack all at the same time. He can cook better than most chefs at restaurants we frequent. His pizza, as some of you will attest, is amazing.
So if he doesn’t like sports…who cares. He just has no need to compete, no need to show off, no need to impress. He just is who he is.