At the Crossroads of Media, Culture and Technology

An Open Letter to Friends and Family Who Intentionally Didn’t Watch the SuperBowl

Dear Friends and Family Who Intentionally Didn’t Watch the Super Bowl,

Grumpy Cat Hates the SuperBowl

Photo Credit: CEDAR PASORI

It’s ok with me if you don’t like football and don’t want to watch the Super Bowl. I understand how annoying it must be to be subjected to all the media hype that leads up to the game. It must be difficult to get away from the press conferences, the commercials, and the posts from those of us who are excited to watch the Super Bowl. Sorry for that.

I understand your concerns about professional sports in general. Yes, many athletes make a ridiculous amount of money. No, many athletes, coaches, and others affiliated with the teams aren’t good role models. You have legitimate arguments to make on those subjects. I get it.

I know there are many things you’d rather do than watch sports. You like to tell me – and everyone else – all about it. You want to remind us that you’re not one of the masses. You don’t follow the crowd. You’ve got something better to do.

So, if you went for a long run, finished that upcoming paper, or went shopping at Ikea and put together all the furniture you bought instead of watching the Super Bowl, that’s awesome. I’m glad you were so productive!

But please, please, please stop making statements and posting comments with the lightly veiled implication that – because you did those things – you’re better than everyone who watched the Super Bowl.

Am I less thoughtful or intelligent because I’m entertained by a professional sport? Was my day less worthwhile than yours?

I don’t think so.

Marshawn Lynch at Seahawks Victory Parade

Photo Credit: LIZ LEGG

Being in Seattle for the Super Bowl this year was electric. Friends clamored to get flights and tickets to the game, the city has been filled with Seahawks colors for weeks, and my Facebook page has been a constant feed of Richard Sherman’s latest comments and Marshawn Lynch’s lack thereof.

Everyone seems on board, except for you.

I don’t mind that you’re not into it. That’s your choice. But why you gotta hate?

Your smug post that popped up right between a recipe for blue and green Jell-O shots and that photo of my friend in his 12th Man cape really got me thinking.

Is it always such a bad thing to be part of the crowd? To share your exuberance with that of those around you? To follow a team, revel in its successes, and join in a national event with millions of people who are doing the same?

I had a great time watching the Super Bowl (as I do every year). I did nothing “productive” or “useful” all day long. And I loved it.

Here’s what I did do:

12th Man Flag on the Space Needle

Photo Credit: VICKI GREEN

  1. Socialize and celebrate with close friends and family
  2. Socialize and celebrate with old friends and people I just met
  3. Enjoy prolonged feelings of excitement and happiness
  4. Make sure to be a good sport to those rooting for the Broncos
  5. Share in the energy of an entire city coming together to root for their team’s first championship

Now, I’m not saying this is any better than what you did on Sunday. I just want to point out that there’s something about sharing an event with your community – small or large – that’s extremely special.

Please don’t try to take that away from me by implying that it’s worth less than the things you did during the game.

Maybe, if you were a little more open-minded, you’d see that there’s more to watching the Super Bowl than you originally thought. Maybe not for you, but at least for those of us who are fans.

So, please let us waste our Sundays away without your aura of condemnation.

I will happily brave the crowds and assemble my Ikea furniture next weekend. There’s no football on anyway!



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This post is categorized in: Events, Lifestyle, Sports

5 Responses to An Open Letter to Friends and Family Who Intentionally Didn’t Watch the SuperBowl

  1. Mark says:

    Excellent piece!

    I was just thinking similar thoughts just before reading your piece. I’m not much of a pro football fan, but towards the end of the season I jumped on the bandwagon. It was fun and exciting for all the reasons you mentioned. And what I enjoyed most was how much fun the true fans were having. And I have no interest in those who are spewing venom towards them.


  2. Liz Legg says:

    Thanks Mark. I’m glad you enjoyed the city’s enthusiasm and even participated yourself!

  3. ken smith says:

    Clearly, those who “didn’t watch” the Super Bowl were actually Denver fans who wanted to avoid the need to explain why their team performed poorly enough to end up in a DISTANT SECOND PLACE.

  4. CF says:

    People who cheer for billion-dollar corporations and their millionaire employees are pretty misguided and certainly shouldn’t feel superior to those who abstain.

    I prefer to cheer on corporations in other sectors. As much it might seem like I’m a “bandwagon fan”, my father cheered for Goldman Sachs, so I just grew up with it. I know the starting 22 gets the majority of the press, but there’s a commodities trader there named Ken Pressman who I think is going to form the core of the IPO underwriting “front 5″ for years to come.

    On the other hand, your post does make me wonder how people socialized and celebrated with close friends and family, old friends, and strangers *before* professional sports. It’s a good thing the NFL came along–life must have been empty of joy prior to its inception.

  5. Liz Legg says:

    Thanks very much for proving that this post needed to be written.

    I think you may be a little “misguided” about a few things I said, though:

    1. I do NOT feel superior to people who abstain from watching professional sports. My point is simply that, similarly, those people should not feel superior to me.

    2. I’m not intending to imply that the ONLY way to celebrate and socialize with friends and family is by watching professional sports. It’s simply one of many ways you can do that and it’s a benefit that sports (professional or otherwise) offers people.

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