Sports fans ring in their New Year

Chris Crowell

2007 has been under way for almost three months now, but not for me. My year is just starting. I operate under the Sports Fan Calendar.

The Sports Fan Calendar is a lot like the normal, everyday calendar. The difference lies in the holidays. Although sports fans still take part in the regular holidays like Thanksgiving and Christmas, they also have their own holidays in the Sports Fan Calendar. While everyone else is blowing horns and choking on confetti in January, we sit back and wait for the opening rounds of March Madness – the real New Years.

Think about it. People who celebrate the normal New Years believe they will exercise and eat right after the ball drops. Tomorrow, after the ball is tipped, sports fans everywhere will start to believe Jackson St. can beat Florida. Impossibility is suspended by hope on New Years.

Here are some other brief examples of Holidays during the Sports Fans Calendar:

MLB Opening Day – SFC Easter – A sports fan’s holy day of obligation. It’s springtime and new life is in the air, especially for 30 MLB teams. Baseball is also very Jesus-like. It accounts for human error and accepts failure as a part of the game. On a side note, Grady Sizemore can walk on water.

The Masters – SFC Thanksgiving – A tradition unlike any other. This was founded by groups of people long ago. On the same Thursday (through Sunday) every year we commemorate and reenact (especially if you are Tiger Woods) the spirit of the past celebrations. Plymouth Rock, meet Augusta National.

NFL Draft – SFC Memorial Day Weekend – The NFL draft is a time to remember the dead. Teams like the Cardinals, Lions and Raiders are pushed to the forefront. Sweet teams like the Chargers, Colts and Patriots are there, but only as background to the dead. This isn’t a holiday celebrated by all, but people who love it, like me, enjoy the time to reflect, mourn and look to the future.

U.S Open (golf)- SFC Fourth of July – The celebration of America and democracy: An open tournament for the U.S. people to be champions of golf. Sure it is an illusion and it’s all eventually ruled by one entity, just like the real American democracy, but it’s still fun.

Rivalry Week through the BCS Championship – SFC Holiday Season -The Michigan game is Christmas Eve, and the bowl game is Christmas.

If you don’t like Ohio State for some ridiculous reason, it doesn’t matter because everyone has a holiday! Bowl season recognizes everyone’s culture. Jews, Muslims, Pagans and SEC fans can all celebrate in their own way. Plus, half the population is upset and depressed just like the regular holiday season. It’s fun.

The Super Bowl – SFC New Year’s Eve – The end of the calendar year. Everyone celebrates it but only a few people really care. Everyone has a party, fakes enthusiasm, eats too much dip and then quits caring right after it’s over.

The Sports Fan Calendar then enters the offseason. Fans take some time to renegotiate, play with the kids and anticipate March Madness.

So sports fans, if I don’t see you tomorrow, which I won’t because I’ll be in my living room, in a bathrobe, watching basketball for 12 hours:

Have a happy New Year! Go Bucks!

Contact sports columnist Chris Crowell at [email protected].

Sports fans, if you are angered about the exclusion of your favorite holiday, write to sports editor Joe Gartrell, [email protected]. If your gripe is well written, it will be presented in Friday’s section.