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YES SIR!! IT’S FOOTBALL SEASON ONCE AGAIN!!!
NORTH CAROLINA (BASN) — It’s football season baby!! That’s right!! Football on Sunday and Monday nights. There is no better season on the planet!! Not winter, summer, spring or fall?
When football season begins, you can smell victory in the wind.
The aroma in the air is a sweet and sour odor, of must and sweat, mixed with freshly cut grass, and green Gatorade.
Now, slowly shift your head slightly to the right and watch the smoke rise from those smothered Bar-B-Q chicken wings on the grill at the tailgating party.
Take a sniff.
Let me pat you on the back. I know you are all choked up and your eyes are tearing up like you just gave birth to a brand new baby BOY.
Don’t lose focus.
Just listen to the sounds of those clashing shoulder pads after a bone-crushing tackle, hear the cheers of the crowd, and the whistles from the men in zebra stripes. It’s enough to give you chills down your spine.
Now, you are officially in a football state of mind.
Honestly, grown men actually pray for football season to arrive like members of the Nation of Islam anticipating the Mother ship to hover over Washington,D.C., like Christians waiting for the Second Coming of Christ, like little children waiting for Santa Claus on X-mas eve.
You say to yourself, all of this sounds so silly. It’s only a game. I still don’t see why men get so excited and heated about football season’s arrival as if they were going to the strip club to see Big Booty Tooty (Sorry, Pac Man Jones) as they fumble in front of a big screen T.V. with a cold bottle of beer in one hand and a giant 12 inch sub in the other.
I mean, what’s the big deal?
Let me answer that question.
Men love football because football is a game of strategy, military tactics, misdirections, deception, and espionage. Yeah, I said espionage just ask New England’s Bill Beli-cheat.
Men also love football because it is a violent male soap opera filled with good guys and bad guys, drama, stats, interviews, knockouts, blood, broken bones and R-rated language.
Football, in fact, is one giant chessboard with real life movable objects, a 60-minute metaphor for life with rules, penalties, and consequences.
In simpler terms, it’s controlled violence; that is uncontrollable.
To be honest, football is loved by men because it’s the only sport besides boxing that allows a man to be a man. A sport that allows you to knock out another man and not get arrested by the police.
Damn, I love this game.
Football, actually, invokes that warrior spirit in all of us. As a result, football players have become our modern day gladiator competing to the death in huge Roman Coliseums like the billion-dollar Palace in Dallas built by Cowboys owner Jerry Jones.
The picture of the Pittsburgh Steelers’ Linebacker Jack Lambert grimacing on the sideline with his front teeth missing captures the spirit and sacredness of this savage sport.
For this reason, these weekend warriors wear mouthpieces, helmets, face masks and chin straps. They also adorn themselves with war paint, tattoos, and body armor which consists of shoulder pads, neck rows, rib protectors, knee pads, thigh pads, and spike shoes as if they were medieval knights preparing to slay a fire-breathing dragon.
Let’s Go To War
The football field actually is a miniature battlefield with war like tactics and terms.
Therefore, words like ground arsenal, air attack, throwing bombs and shotgun formation are used to describe offensive plays, which are given by calculating college coaches with headphones and walkie-talkies that send in sign language and hand signals from the sideline to nervous, red-shirt, freshmen quarterbacks, as three seconds remain on the play-clock.
On the sideline with the head coaches, are defensive and offensive coordinators, special team coaches, trainers, and water boys for players, who may dehydrated.
Plus, there is an ambulance outside the stadium with an emergency medical team waiting, along with crutches, bandages, and oxygen for injured athletes.
There is even some smelling sauce for players, who unfortunately have been knocked out conscious in the heat of the battle. As you can see, this is serious stuff.
Dangerous Dance With Death
The WWE’s Vince McMahon tried to tap into the male psyche or desire for testosterone driven action. But his dose of violence is too fake and too cartoonish to be taking seriously.
As a result, wrestling’s choreographed competition simply can’t compare with the NFL’s spontaneous head bangers ball. Just ask Brock Lesner or Dwayne “Da Rock” Johnson.
To the conservative Christian Coalition, I am sorry to inform you that all athletes practice a form of atheism in the NFL. Because they instantly become aware that neither Jesus, Joseph nor the Virgin Mary can protect them on the field.
Ask any professional quarterback scrambling for his life, with two 260-pound linebackers chasing him, if Jesus can save him?
Because, he has about three seconds or less to release that football, or he is going to get killed like an innocent deer or Bambi’s mother in the scope of a hunter’s rifle. BAM!!!
DAMN!! This is RAW and UNCUT!!
Football tests your heart and your guts.
So, buckle up.
For that very reason, football proves Darwin’s Theory of “survival of the fittest” while you are on the field.
Because it’s killed or be killed on this battlefield. And ain’t nothing fallen out the sky but your mouthpiece after you get jaw-jacked by Ray Lewis.
Honestly, football allows us all to tap into our animalistic nature.
This may sound cruel and barbaric, but football allows us to explore our animal instincts.
The beast within us all is released when we growl and grit our teeth like a wild grizzly bear, howl at the moon like a pack of wolves, bark like mad dogs in a pound, flap our hands like an eagle in flight, roar like a lion, bump chest with another overzealous fan like two rambunctious rams, or clap our hands like the mouth of an alligator. TEBOW!!
That’s why most of the teams we love are named after animals like the Jaguars, Bills, Eagles, Rams, Lions, Bears, Panthers, Falcons, Cardinals, Ravens, and Bengals.
These animals are chosen to embody the spirit and characteristic of those teams.
This is an ancient custom or tradition borrowed or stolen from our ancient African ancestors and the Native American family.
This embodiment of animal spirits can be seen on the walls of ancient Kemet and in other indigenous cultures like the Mayas, Aztec, and Incas.
For instances, many African tribes adorn themselves with animal head type masks while many Native American tribes wore buffalo skins and feathers of birds as forms of headdress.
These masks and animal inspired attire was believed to give the wearer the power of that animal. In other words, he would be possessed with that animal’s strength and abilities.
While many teams give honor to animals, others named themselves after ferocious fighters, who displayed courageous camaraderie on the battlefield throughout the perils of time.
Therefore, you have teams named the Vikings, Redskins, Titans, Patriots, Raiders, Buccaneers, Giants, and Cowboys.
As you can see, football is more than a game.
Football is really a religious gathering, a sacred ceremony where blood, sweat, and tears are mixed in a big bowl (Sugar Bowl, Orange Bowl or the Super Bowl) like a witches brew.
And if you drink this potent potion in the cup of destiny, you will become intoxicated to the point of madness and experience the ultimate form of Ecstasy and fall in love with the game of football.
And now you know the secret of why men love football, it’s a never-ending love story.
Thank God for Football!!
Eric D.Graham, a graduate of Winston-Salem State University, where he earned a B.A. in Mass Communication with a concentration in Radio and Television and a minor in History, with an emphasis in African-American Studies, is currently a featured Sports Columnist for the Black Athlete Sports Network, where his thought-provoking articles appear on a daily basis. You can reach Graham at firstname.lastname@example.org or go to www.bobbeethehater.blogspot.com.