As I detailed in Football season is the best kind of season, I love football. I love pro, I love college, I love playing it with friends and I love the entire atmosphere of fun that surrounds it. I watch it for the drama of badly called plays, for the histrionics of players who have huge egos and even larger paychecks, for the adrenaline rushes when my team gets a touchdown or slams the other team (more related to the Ducks than the ‘Skins, but whatever), and for the memories I have of watching it when I was a kid or when I was in Autzen Stadium. Football makes me elated, angry, excited and horrified—considering I can be rather hard to enthuse, that’s pretty freakin’ impressive. I also grew up playing softball, collecting baseball cards, and a few years ago started to get hardcore into soccer (Los Deutschland!…and Lukas Podolski…mm.). I don’t, however, love football so that a douchebag bro in a bar can buy me a drink.
I’m not even going to make the bullshit claim that no girl actually likes sports, because that is insulting to anyone woman who has ever enjoyed watching ESPN, or that I’m an exception to the rule of sports love. That makes no sense at all, not just because I know more girls than I could count who know game rules inside and out, but because that’s horribly presumptuous and ignorant. Jezebel already properly mocked most of the stereotypes, yet I am still bothered. There’ve been a handful of times in my life where I’m at a bar with other people, minding my own business, watching the game that’s on TV, when I guy comes up, leans in very close—you can’t hear people unless they seductively yell directly into your ear—and asks if I need a little help figuring out the rules of the game. Right. It’s time for the man to be the hero! Apparently my “I’m watching sports, if you couldn’t notice” face is dangerously close to my “I’m watching sports but have no idea wtf is going on” face. Ha-ha! Charade you are, I’m more likely to have that reaction while watching any show on TLC than a baseball game….even if I find baseball to be the dullest thing to watch on TV.
Anywho, there are a few things we can blame for this too-oft misunderstanding. One, hot girls in bars who actually don’t know shit about sports and use their boobs for dudes to buy them drinks. There is a difference between girls who don’t know sports and have no real desire to figure out the rules, and the girls who wear the largest padded push-up they have (they have bras that increase your cup size by 2, now! You, too, can become double whoa!), slicking on lipgloss like Oops!-era Britney and go out to trick lonely men in bars into thinking they’re interested, but they’d be even more interested if he bought her another drink.
Hint: one of those classifications has a soul, the other doesn’t. The women I have an ish with are using their powers of being pretty for evil. I don’t really care how empowered you think you are, manipulation is not cool. More on that later.
Two, guys who buy that all girls are like that and take it upon themselves to enlighten the ladies that will surely fall for them. I blame these guys more than the girls, because while the girls definitely do exist and they are the most annoying girls who will ever set foot into a sports bar, it’s the guys need to be macho that is just the insult to the overall injury. Not only are they trying to assert their manliness to get you to woo, they are assuming that you are one of those girls. Maybe, possibly, I just have an issue with someone assuming that I’m a bimbo who wants to be taught and wooed about things that I don’t understand over a couple of drinks that will absolutely not lead to me giving you my number but thanks for the conversation–gigglegigglegiggle–Oh, I gotta go my friends are leaving!
However, I think there is a bigger, more annoying, freaking feminist issue here. I’m going to try really hard not to get preachy, but holy frijoles, dudes. This is all perpetuating some annoying stereotype that comes in so many forms. Whether it’s girls knowing sports, girls playing video games, girls reading comic books or girls getting out of the kitchen to get one of them new fangled jerbs, the exhibited behavior from that guy in the bar and that girl’s reaction perpetuate the idea of the hehe I’m sorry, I don’t know any better, I’m a woman, and effectively turn the idea of a girl knowing anything about “guy things” into a novel concept. Which it isn’t. As someone who tends to like games, sports, and isn’t really into being domesticated or playing dumb to get further in life, it gets belittling and our adoration gets turned into the butt of a joke. And I refuse to believe, though I could be totally wrong, that most guys want to date a girl who has a single digit IQ when it comes to things they’re interested in.
Dudes, guys and brotanks out there, is it really that hot when a girl makes a comment like this, “so, like, why don’t they just, like, win?” or “Why don’t they have more points?” or “Why don’t they just tackle that guy?” or “Wait, since when is holding a bad thing?”
No? Then stop encouraging the girls who seem overly flirtatious when they ask about the rules of the game. If she seems interested in the action that’s not happening in your pants, she is probably actually curious about what’s on screen, but if she’s giving her bottle of beer a blow job while being seemingly too interested Jimmy Graham’s tight end, it’s a sign. Then again, if you’re into that, congrats. You just scored. Feel free to treat yourself to an internal victory dance, just get tested for STIs afterwards.