I used to carry a small transistor radio around my house so that I wouldn’t miss a pitch of a Texas Rangers’ game. No, this wasn’t just in my halcyon youth but well into my 30s. I used to read Sports Illustrated cover to cover every week and fumed when I realized that my issue was sometimes missing articles that others received. I may have been one of only 15 people who actually watched the live broadcast of the US vs. Spain basketball Gold medal game of the 2008 Olympics; played at 3:00 in the morning. I recently read about a couple in Alabama who missed their daughter’s wedding because it conflicted with an U. of Alabama football game.
Quick philosophy discussion – Our culture is awash in Postmodernism. This, in the simplest terms, is a breakdown of Big Stories. In other words, there is no large theme that holds culture together. Former Big Stories such as religion, duty, science, or the American Way have been reduced to little stories. So we have thousands of little stories and a fragmented society. Who is to say that my story is less important than your story? This contributes to an increase in fanaticism in our culture. We are placing emphasis that should be reserved for larger, more meaningful stories on to ideas, events, and happenings that hold very little meaning; such as celebrity, pets, veganism, etc.
Sports may be the biggest small to Big Story of them all and while cultures in the past were symbolized by their churches or government buildings, our culture, at least in the DFW Metroplex, is defined by the world’s largest domed stadium. On Sunday, that domed stadium will be hosting the biggest sporting event of the year. But on Monday, I will be shutting off my sports talk radio and my sports Twitter feeds, and my multiple times a day ESPN.com habit and trying to create a week thinking about the Biggest Story the Universe has ever known – God’s work of redemption and action on his creation.
Now that is something to be fanatical about.