There is an episode from the show Friends where the gang is engaging in a Thanksgiving day game of touch football. I don't remember the particulars, but there was a suggestion that players switch teams, and Ross, of the couple Ross and Rachel, decided to trade his girlfriend to the other team. This happens all the time in pick-up sports, of course, but Rachel (played by the very beautiful Jennifer Aniston) took exception to this and said, "I can't believe you're trading me!" She obviously wasn't looking at it from a touch football point of view, and she took it as an affront on the relationship.
My girlfriend and I have varied schedules, and as it turns out, whenever the Steelers are playing, we're usually not together. The rare exception would be when the Steelers play a Sunday night football game like they did last week against the Baltimore Ravens.
I love my girlfriend, of course, and it's nice when we get to watch a game together, but there are sacrifices that a man must make when he's watching the game with his lady because (at least in my experience, anyway) it's totally different from watching it with anyone else.
When you're watching a game with your friends, you can insult them about their knowledge on sports. "You don't know what you're talking about. You're an idiot!" They generally understand. You can't do that with your girlfriend. During the Ravens game, my girlfriend asked me what a touchback was. I was really into the intense action, but I tried to explain it as best as I could. I guess I had a bit of an attitude about it, and she got offended and took it as an affront on the relationship.
When you're watching the game with someone like your brother, for example, and things are really getting tense, and it's coming down to the wire, you can scream and pace and raise your voice, and your brother doesn't even notice because he's too busy acting the same way. Last week, during that gut-wrenching and unfortunate 92-yard drive, my girlfriend said something to me, and I responded in a really intense and loud manner. I was really into the action and wasn't in control of my emotions. My girlfriend, naturally, took this as an affront on the relationship and said, "I think you're getting a little too wrapped up in it, hunny!"
Are you serious?
Anyway, this past week, I got to watch the Steelers/Bengals contest all by myself. For the game, I wore shorts and a Steelers hooded sweatshirt. Strangely, I didn't have a t-shirt on underneath, and I don't know why. When the action got really intense, for whatever reason, I took the sweatshirt off and was just in my shorts (that's even less sexy than it sounds, ladies).
I rarely sat in the same place the entire game. I yelled, I swore, and I ran around my apartment like an idiot; I even drank a couple of beers, damn it! There was nobody around to take affront to anything I did.
It was glorious.
The Steelers next game is another Sunday night contest. You know what that means? That's right, Starbucks and cuddle time.