Somewhere along the way, I became a football fan.
I know — it surprised me too.
But here I am, jazzed for a Seahawks PRESEASON game, and I don’t know what to do with myself. In the never-ending list of contradictions that seemed to come with the finality of my 20s, I started enjoying the one sport I actively loathed. (Seriously. My ESPN username was Cari Hates Football.)
It all changed last year when my friends bullied me into joining their fantasy football league. I suddenly had a brand-new procrastination tactic for thesis-writing sessions — and I actually wasn’t terrible at it for someone who autodrafted and checked my lineup once each week. My competitive streak flared up through league trash-talking, and my social calendar filled up with game-day activities. I watched the games willingly, with no liquid encouragement necessary — and I even knew some of the players by name. My joy for the game became a sport in itself as I began to understand the nuances of different plays and positions.
And then this idiot fantasy team manager ended up in second place. And she began plotting her draft strategy for the 2013-2014 season.
The lesson here is that you never know how a person will change, and you never know if you’ll like something until you try it, and maybe you should stop being so stubborn about the issues you see in black and white. Sometimes those issues are in shades of blue and green.
*Title inspired by the “Where’d You Go, Bernadette: A Novel,” a book that has nothing to do with football and everything to do with Seattle.