Clinging to hope in a world without sports
We're still living in the shadow of the COVID-19 pandemic. The stay at home orders have been in place for some time now. To make matters worse, we've been without several forms of entertainment. All the normal distractions from life's ills have been temporarily shut down. People are at their wit's end. They're losing their minds because they can't go anywhere or do anything to get their minds off of being stuck in Groundhog Day.
Sports often provide a welcomed distraction. Like I mentioned earlier, things are at a standstill. Every league has been interrupted in some way, shape, or form. Except the NFL. The NFL was in a somewhat fortunate position that they were in their offseason when the shut downs took place. The combine was conducted just before travel restrictions and social distancing was ordered. Free agency was business as usual. They're even continuing to hold their draft this week, but doing so virtually by holding it through teleconference.
Other sports that have been interrupted are having conversations about a potential return. Whether it's done without crowds, in isolation, or some modified version, they're all discussing how to make a comeback. Money is a huge motivator, but hope is another major factor.
Giving people hope
As previously mentioned, sports provide a much needed distraction. During the worst times, sports have often been the comfort food we've all needed. Who can forget the first games played after 9/11? I had a guy tell me when the housing market crashed a few years ago, he lost almost everything. The thing that gave him piece of mind was watching sports. Sports have gotten me through some of the toughest times in my life as well. We could all use the distraction right now.
Semblance of normalcy
Not only do sports offer us hope, but it signifies a semblance of normalcy. When things have been turned upside down, you need them to get back o normal as quickly as possible. While we can't go sit down at our favorite restaurants, we can still enjoy the food to go or even by delivery. That is what sports would be like right now. We may not be able to attend the games, but we'd most likely be able to watch them. Even if they took place in some random arenas, fields, or courts, it would be like eating your chips and salsa out of a plastic bag and styrofoam container instead of the bowls they normally come in. It's still the same chips and salsa you love, just not in the form you're used to. (No free refills either.)
Starving for entertainment
Right now, we're all starving for entertainment. People are passing time by doing and watching some of the craziest things. Tik Tok has taken over. Some videos are hilarious, while others leave a lot to be desired. We all got sucked into the Tiger King vortex (phrasing). The Last Dance documentary was dropped at the perfect time. Gamblers are betting on some of the lamest things right now. You know it's bad when they're replaying classic sporting events in prime time slots. Things wouldn't be as bad if movie theaters were open, new movies were dropping, and/or new tv shows were out. I don't know about you, but I'm enjoying catching up on things I hvaen't seen or love reliving.
I applaud the NFL for what they're doing with the draft. This will hold folks over for a little while and give them something to talk about. But until games are being played, I don't know how long some can hold up. Personally, I've created a routine to keep myself occupied. Part of that is knowing which days and channels have marathons of my favorite tv shows. I thoroughly enjoyed the Ali-Frazier trilogy ESPN had on this past weekend. Find something new and different to get into. Try that show or movie your friends recommend. Hell, get to know your family better. Whatever you guys do, don't lose hope. Keep your faith. This too shall pass.