Memory and Why I Don’t Watch Sports

Well, except Jindo, the manga.

Seth puts out yet another resonating post about memory and media. The key message:

As we continually replace real life with ever shorter digital updates, what happens to the memories we build for ourselves and the people we serve? More and more, we don’t remember what actually happened to us, but what we’ve encountered digitally. It scales, but does it matter in the same way?

This relates so much to why I don’t watch sports. My roommate and other friends spend hours on end watching sports: golf, basketball, etc. One time over wings at Wings, one friend remarked that basketball’s golden day was back when…[insert year] (I don’t remember.) He spoke with pride and reminiscence, as though, he was there. I remember thinking:

So where were you? The victory, the glory wasn’t yours. You were watching OTHER PEOPLE making it in the world. What were YOU doing?

Hence one of my reasons for not watching sports. Beyond the pure motivational aspect of seeing athletes training relentlessly and reaping the rewards, the tears and happiness on their faces on the “golden day”, I don’t watch sports for the sake of watching sports. Seth asks if the digital memories “matter in the same way.” And I say that they don’t. In fact, they matter so little that I’d rather spend the time doing something else. My friends haven’t said:

Win, remember the time when we watched the World Cup in Brazil and we had so much fun that I can never forget how much fun YOU AND I had?

No. It’s:

Win, remember when Brazil won the World Cup in [insert year]? It was awesome. Ronaldinho did this crazy [insert goal].

Because after 10, 20, 30 years of watching sports, we can say the golden years of basketball, soccer, golf were this and this and this. And yet, we will have forgotten to answer this question:

When was YOUR golden year?