wine by the color

Thursday, October 19, 2006

As anyone who knows me is well aware, math and I are not good friends. But let’s try a little this morning…

I decided to calculate how many hours I’ve spent watching sports over the years. This is obviously an approximation, and dependent upon mathematical acumen most eight-year-olds can surpass, for which my mother continues to blame my seventh-grade math teacher. I think I just don't like numbers.

For the purposes of this exercise, I’m using 25 years as my baseline for length of viewing. While I haven’t watched all of these sports religiously for 25 years, it helps to average out periods in my life when all I did was watch sports (college, in particular), when these numbers would skew much higher, and other periods (such as the brief relationship I had with a guy who once said to me, "I can't imagine anything more boring than sitting around watching football all day") when there might be a viewing decrease. It also tries to average in the countless hours I have spent watching sporting events in person.

So let’s do some math…

Baseball = 3,000 hours (1000 games x 3 hours each)
Basketball = 4,000 hours (2,000 games x 2 hours each)
Hockey = 750 hours (250 games x 3 hours each)
Pro football: 2,550 hours (6 hours per week x 17 weeks per season x 25 years)
Pro football playoffs: 1,125 hours (15 games x 3 hours each x 25 years)
College football: 2,600 (8 hours per week x 13 weeks x 25 years
College football bowl season: 750 hours (10 games x 3 hours each x 25 years)
Miscellaneous (including Golf, the Olympics and the Miss America Fitness Pageant): 1,875 hours (75 hours per year x 25 years)

So, I have used approximately 16,750 hours of my years on this earth watching sports. Hmm. That seems low. But that’s what the numbers tell me, so I won’t argue.

And why is this important?

Because in those 16,750 hours, I have never actually vomited while watching a sporting event. My closest call probably came on Jan. 3, 2003, during the first overtime of the OSU-Miami Fiesta Bowl national title game, when Craig Krenzel’s pass to Chris Gamble fell incomplete in the end zone. During the few seconds before the penalty flag for pass interference sailed through the air, I was certain I’d be sick.

(I should in the interest of full disclosure mention that there was illness later that night. But that was compliments of a lot of high-altitude celebrating. Very good times. And perhaps the last time I’ve gotten sick due to drinking. But I digress…)

This is all noteworthy because last night, with Billy Wagner on the mound in the top of the ninth, my stomach had another close call.

The Mets makeshift pitching staff was actually getting it done, thanks to a brilliant performance by John Maine (JOHN MAINE?!?). Wagner then came in with a four-run lead and promptly gave Mets Nation a heart attack. My cousin and I went to last Friday night's game and that was just a train wreck. For a few minutes, I thought last night was going to be a repeat.

If Wagner had actually blown the game last night, I would have fully expected Maine to take Wagner onto the field to whup his ass in front of the crowd. I would have DEMANDED it.

But he managed to hold on and the Mets live another day. I'll be sure not to eat anything spicy for dinner this evening, lest there be a repeat of last night's excitement.


  • At 10/19/2006 8:36 PM, Blogger todd a said…

    Here's hoping the ball doesn't roll through Pujols' legs.

    Go Cards.

  • At 10/21/2006 11:30 AM, Blogger Q said…

    Fascinating post, but numbers make my stomach queasy, so I skipped over most of them to your main point! I mean, I am the personification of: "Warning: Journalist doing math!"

    Here's to your good health and many more hours of your streak, JG.


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