American football season is here, a game where two teams of highly paid athletes run, kick and throw a brown leather ball downfield. Nobody hits the football with their heads like they do in soccer, probably because the ball is pointed on both ends, but nonetheless, the concept and fervor of the games are similar.
American football is wall-to-wall entertainment on the weekends, and throughout the week, which means that the husband and I will be communication-challenged for the next several months as he will be preoccupied rooting for his teams.
Some women would give up communicating against such odds, but I have learned how to navigate the field, or “go long” as they say in the game.
If I have something important to say, I put on one of the husband’s suit jackets and tuck a colourful pocket square into the chest pocket so I look like a sports commentator.
If that fails to get his attention, I sometimes yell, “Hut one, hut two – hike!”
My last resort is to announce that the concession stand is about to close. That one never fails.
Sometimes I stop and stare at a game on the television simply because the television is located between the kitchen and my home office. Typically, I will be headed to the kitchen or to my desk, and space out as to where I was headed and why, so I’ll stand and watch until I remember what it is I was doing.
Unfortunately, the husband mistakes my blank stare for genuine interest and begins talking technicalities, trying to educate me as to the finer points of the game. Some hopes never die.
The truth is, I like all sports. The problem is that watching sports involves sitting. For me, sitting usually leads to sleeping.
Some have suggested that snacking would help keep me awake, but snacking only means that I fall asleep and drool cheesy nachos at the same time.
That said, when I am awake, I do attempt interaction with the team by cheering for whomever the husband is cheering. Yelling “Atta-boy!” is my go-to because it gives the impression I am wildly enthusiastic and pretty well covers everyone on the field from the starting line to the guy handing towels to players on the bench.
“Looking good!” is also part of my repertoire. It sounds like I might know what I’m talking about.
I am not the only one whose attention wanes when I sit. The husband also nods off watching a game sometimes, which means all cheering and commentary are left solely to me – a heavy burden, but I can get it to the 10-yard line on the second down.
I bark directions to the quarterback, “Don’t pass, do you hear me? Don’t pass!” Other times I rout the defence, yelling unsavoury things like, “My grandma could have held the line better!”
The important thing is not that I understand every nuance of the game, but that I cheer the same team for whom my husband cheers. It’s called teamwork.
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