This morning I was driving back from the gym blasting Meek Mill’s “dreams and nightmares” and it hit me. My favorite athlete in sports, Carson Wentz, was returning to my favorite team and I was instantly amped beyond belief. Regardless of how bad my day or week was to that point, I was so excited for some football.
The Beauty of Sports
I think that is one of the beautiful things that sports does is that three hours on one day can make a whole week of bad breaks seem insignificant. Everyone has a vice they turn to for some daily relief. For some people its music, movies or even reading they all are an escape. But from my point of view, sports is something that is a completely different animal.
For those of you not familiar with me I am a die-hard Philadelphia Eagles fan. Last season that team got me through everything. From a horrible first job money troubles to personal life issues, because at the end of the day I always had my Eagles. When they won super bowl LII it was this feeling of euphoria that I don’t think I have completely shaken yet. It could be myself feeling like an under dog connected with a team full of misfits and underdogs, or I could be just my favorite team winning a title. Or maybe a combination of both.
I’ve seen sports unite people from all walks of life. From a family fantasy football league that makes people who couldn’t care less watch every game closely to, the most obvious example, the Super Bowl. A time where millions of people, some who couldn’t care less about the game, gather those for hours, just as invested as the rabid sports fan at the same party because of the party atmosphere. Even in my personal experience I have been in a random sports bar and made instant friends with three Eagles fans across the room. These people who I had never met before invited me to sit with them.
Sports Help to Heal
Sports can also be healing for a whole city or even country. A few times that come to mind are Mike Piazza’s monster home run for the Mets and Sammy Sosa rounding the outfield wall at Wriggly Field holding an American flag before the Cubs game. Both of these events days after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. An even more recent example was David “Big Papi” Ortiz’s epic speech at Fenway after the Boston Marathon bombings. He said, “this is Our F@#kn City!” and they went on to win the world series that year.
For some, sports can be a way for someone born into a low-income situation or impoverished country to escape that situation. To get a good education or even a shot a playing a sport professionally. This changes their life as well as their family and friends lives. Athletes like Michael Irvin, Marshawn Lynch, and Yasiel Puig all come from rough neighborhoods or country and their sports talent was their way out.
Sports unite. It heals. It empowers. And it even can be a getaway. There is nothing else like it and that’s why for so many people it is their passion. Including me.