Room Inside a Box

"There is no room inside a box." ~Doug Pinnick

Location: Tamaqua, Pennsylvania, United States

I started this blog as a soundboard for some much needed therapy during my separation with my wife throughout much of 2005. It was truly a blessing to get my thoughts out there through the writing process. Thankfully things have worked out between us. I would have continued to blog, but ever since I started my teaching career, I have found it impossible to do as much blogging as I would like to. So now I hope to periodically post as time and energy allow.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

The Eagles, Agassi, and Life

Besides Philadelphia Eagles football (who by the way are going to destroy the Falcons tomorrow night), the only other sport I really get excited about is tennis--particularly when Andre Agassi is on the court. If I was a bit older, I'd be a big fan of John McEnroe, but since I was born at the height of his popularity, I am instead a huge fan of Agassi. And since my beloved Eagles do not open their season until tomorrow night, I was able to watch in its entirety the men's final of the U.S. Open (otherwise, I would've switched back and forth between the two, and the Birds probably would've gotten most of my attention--football always takes precedence over tennis). Sometimes when I am actively engaged in watching football or tennis I wonder to myself, "Why the hell am I getting so excited?" I mean, I really get excited when watching the Eagles or Agassi: screaming at the television, shouting expletives at refs or umpires, pumping my fists, frantically pacing during commercial breaks, high-fiving or arguing with others in my presence....

Why? This question has plagued me for quite some time. What is happening on a football field or a tennis court with men that have absolutely nothing to do with me and my life should in no way affect me whatsoever. In addition, I scoff at others who can't miss the next episode of this or that "reality" show, and I cast a condescending glare at those who chatter on and on about this soap opera or that mini-series. But what a hypocrite I am because I am no different with football and tennis! All this has really bothered me. But today as I was sadly watching Agassi die in the fourth set against a ruthless Federer, something dawned on me: The show must go on.

I'm not dead yet, and since I have no intention of killing myself anytime soon, I might as well go on celebrating life. That's what sports are--one aspect of them anyway--and that's what all entertainment is--to one degree or another: a celebration of life. Every cheer, every big play, every edge-of-your-seat nailbiter is a big Fuck you to death and all that it means. We move, we create, we offer and provide and give and apply and accept meaning. And for who, for what (pun intended for those Eagles fans out there)? There is no meaning, no purpose, outside of what we make of it. We do all this because we can. We do all this because it is what it is. Under the sun, I believe art and sports and entertainment exists for itself and its own glory as a celebration that we are alive and well--at least for now. (Of course I believe in an existence above the Sun--pun intended for those Xians out there--and have correlations between this celebration of life and its relevance to the supernatural order, but that is a moot point for now.)

The Saints beat the Panthers today, and in addition to this making me very happy because I loathe all the Carolina bandwagon jumpers predicting that they are going to win the Super Bowl this year (Hello! That would be Philadelphia!), it also made me feel good because in spite of all the devastation that has affected that region as of late, the Saints have gone on with the only thing they know how to do: play football. That's all they can do. I mean, you and I are going to die someday, so why not just get it over with and pull the trigger or tie that noose? Why go through all this shit? Because there's football. There's tennis. And yes, there are "reality" shows and soap operas. And let's not forget today's date; I think it's important that they played and won today, on this date. The city of New York has moved on, the city of New Orleans will move on, and we all will continue to move on celebrating life the only way we know how--by moving on. The show must go on. And you and I will be there to watch it with all the glee of a child on Christmas morning. It's all we know how to do. For now, it's all we can do.


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