In Defense of the Bandwagon

This time of year, American football gets a lot of attention in the US media. And in offices, bars, and coffee shops. I am a sports fan for reasons that are outside the scope of this post. I am also a fan of the bandwagon (pun intended). If a team isn’t winning, why should I care?

Let’s get something out of the way. There are those that reject sports and everything related. Good for them. That is a perfectly fine attitude. Also, those of you that are fans of a team through the good and bad? Good on you. That just isn’t how I look at it.

I grew up in Wisconsin. That made me a Packer fan. The Milwaukee Bucks were on the radio and had a player named Lew Alcindor (later changed his name to Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) and they were fun to follow. I also went to the University of Wisconsin – Madison, so that made me a Badger fan.

Other than a short stint in Seattle, WA, I have lived in Minnesota since 1985. That means that all the media (newspaper, radio, internet) are about the Vikings, Gophers, Timberwolves, etc.

I get asked if I am a Packer fan or a Viking fan. My answer is usually unsatisfactory: whomever is winning.

I don’t root for Sony or Disney to put out a good picture. I hope they do, but I don’t try to predict or analyze upcoming movie releases. I don’t wear Pixar or Dreamworks colors and I don’t make bets on them. They produce entertainment. If a movie is not entertaining, I’m not going to go or recommend it.

I feel the same with sports. While there will always be a soft spot for the Green Bay Packers & Chicago Cubs (1969 was my first year following pro sports as I lived in Chicago), these days I am more interested in Minnesota teams. They are the ones I hear about. I get to know the players and coaches via articles and news. They get the video replays on the evening news. But if they aren’t winning, I feel no obligation to support them.

We are constantly reminded by players and owners that professional sports is a business. An entertainment business.

Entertain me or you don’t get my entertainment attention or dollars.





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