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Commentary: A misunderstood obsession

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Elsie Ramos, Sports Editor

I have an obsession. And that obsession is sports. It began I was little and my dad signed me up for soccer. Every time there was a family event, we would build a makeshift goal and play a game of five on five.

We would worship the soccer players on television; my idol was Mia Hamm. She was everything I wanted to be: fast, graceful and had excellent footwork.

I remember asking my mom, “Do you think I’ll make it to the USA team?” and like a good mom she said, “Of course.”

As I got older, I realized that I was never going to be the next Mia Hamm because I was not fast, extremely uncoordinated and clumsy.

When high school came around, I made the decision that I needed to reach for a more attainable goal, so I decided to watch and write about sports instead of playing them.

People say, “Why do people get so worked up over sports? It’s just a game.” Well to these people I say they just do not understand the passion and dedication that comes with following a sports team.

They do not get the passion that a fan feels for their team. They do not see how much it hurts to see your team lose in the fourth quarter or in the ninth inning.

When your team loses those heartbreaking games you feel like you have been punched in the stomach.

During the 2009 Major League baseball playoffs I would sit in the same spot on my living room floor to watch all the Dodger games.

I would be there for every inning and every pitch. When one of the players would make a bad play or strike out I would grunt at the TV and my mom would tell me to stop watching if I was going to get so upset over a game.

I would just tell her that she doesn’t understand because she doesn’t have a team.

There is no logical explanation as to why someone would sit in the same spot for hours watching a game.

Perhaps the best explanation for my case comes from the character Jimmy Fallon portrays in the movie “Fever Pitch,” in which he plays a man obsessed with the Boston Red Sox.

His explanation is simple, “It’s good for the soul to invest in something you can’t control.”

We like feeling that we have control of every aspect of our lives, so why not leave one aspect of our lives in someone else’s hands.

We are constantly making decisions whether it is at work, school, or home that we feel will benefit us in some way, so why not let go for a couple of hours and let other people make the decisions.

Everyone gets so uptight with all the responsibilities that come with having control, and letting go of some of that responsibility is good for us.

The hunger we have for control is not healthy, it stresses us out, takes away our energy, and sometimes it leaves us feeling lifeless. When we watch sports, we hand over some of that control in a way that makes us feel good.

While watching the games, I don’t think about the homework that I should be doing, and I try and drown out my professor’s voice with Vin Scully’s.

When I watch the Dodger games, the stress of the world around me disappears, and the only stress I have left is whether we’ll win the game.

Yes, I know that my time could be spent doing other more productive things, but there’s something about watching your team win in the last second that can’t be fulfilled elsewhere.

Elsie Ramos, a sophomore journalism major, is sports editor of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at

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