Epic Carnival | Where Sports and Pop Culture Collide: TOP 12 SPORTS FANDOMS THAT DOUBLE AS CHILD ABUSE


by DMtShooter, Five Tool Tool

Beating the odds and cultural stereotypes of bloggers, I've aided in procreation on multiple occasions. As such, I have some impact in what teams my offspring will watch and root for... and that's not a responsibility that a parent should treat lightly.

This is a whole different ballgame if you are local to the team you are rooting for. Then, at least, your kid will have the common ground of misery with their classmates.

But if you've moved away, and live in a place without an obvious team... and are now raising a Lions fan for no better reason than you want someone to cry with you later in life... you may be a bad parent. (And I may be there with you. Go A's!)

Here's 12 choices that, if you encourage your kid to make, you are probably dooming them a lifetime of unhappiness. You monster, you.

12. Bitter Fringe Sport (lacrosse, hockey, X-Games, soccer, lumberjackery, nearly all Olympic events, etc.).

Why It's Abuse: Aren't you just the more enlightened parent! Your little tax deduction is out there getting fresh air and exercise and gaining confidence and breaking the mold as an Iconoclastic Individual. Who cares that most of what he or she is doing is avoiding the presence and competition with non-privilege athletes, and/or getting a false sense of self-worth by competing in a shallow pool? Lacrosse builds good character. Just like those fine boys at Duke!

Mitigating factor: Almost no one geeks hard enough on these things to the exclusion of other sports. Your kid isn't as likely to be obese.

Your Worth as a Parent: Marginal at best, but at least you can probably rent their love.

11. Minnesota Vikings.

Why It's Abuse: The Vikes used to be the designated Super Bowl laughingstock. Now they don't even get that far. Your kid will never be able to take a boat cruise without other people making the same old tired jokes about it, and may turn into a fat freak fan who wears Wagnerian opera diva hair to games. Also, they're liable to talk Not Funny. Garrison Keillor Not Funny.

Mitigating factor: Other Viking fans exist, and Minnesotans are so nice, they're likely to tell me to go to heck over this assessment, rather than some more awful place.

Your Worth as a Parent: Mildly negligent, but not completely doom-tastic.

10. Detroit Lions.

Why It's Abuse: Unless you are very old, you don't remember the Lions winning a playoff game, either. Your team is a failure on every level, an eternal irritant to the rest of the NFL fans who'd like to see a good team play on Thanksgiving, and a living embodiment of failing upward. Someday, Millen will be a verb. And not a good one.

Mitigating factor: They'll at least have Thanksgiving, and a firm grasp on the finer points of political protest.

Your Worth as a Parent: Highly questionable. It's not quite in the creepy range yet, but your kids have definitely seen you drunk and naked.

9. Minnesota Timberwolves.

Why It's Abuse: Childhood should be a time of joy, hope and wonder. The only joy that T-Wolves fans experience involves the hope that Kevin McHale will be torn apart by wild dogs. Small, slow, dogs. With dull teeth, bad breath, and incontinence issues.

Mitigating factor: Every parent wishes for a better life for their child. It scarcely seems possible that your kid will have a worse T-Wolf team experience to root for than you did.

Your Worth as a Parent: Harsh, cold and aloof, with definite time in therapy in their future. But they should be able to avoid pole dancing, if not reality television.

8. New York Knicks.

Why It's Abuse: Good heavens, don't you care who your kid associates with? Zach Randolph, Stephon Marbury, Eddy Curry and Isiah Thomas are not safe, even for fully consenting adults, let alone innocent children. Besides, shouldn't your kids know about, you know, passing? And point guards? And defense?

Mitigating factor: The Garden is fantastic. The history is great. You'll never worry about your team getting outbid for talent, or not trying to win. Eventually, they won't suck. Patience is good for kids.

Your Worth as a Parent: Equal terms abusive and exploitative, you're raising a self-indulgent, manic-depressive loser. Hey, go with what you know. Maybe they'll be go out for drama club or something.

7. Arizona Cardinals.

Why It's Abuse: More punchline than team, with the great work of Dennis Green being only the biggest joke in decades of low comedy. Your kid will also likely never meet another Buzzsaw fan, since even the people in Arizona are all really from somewhere else, and just waiting to turn on them. Bonus: Bill Bidwell will never sell, die, or win. He's a vampire of suck.

Mitigating factor: They've got a new stadium, and play in an utterly terrible division. One of these years, they have to win a little, don't they?

Your Worth as a Parent: Deadbeat-ish at best, and given the history of the franchise, the kids are under a constant worry that you're likely to ditch them. But on the bright side, they won't take any kindness for granted.

6. Baltimore Orioles.

Why It's Abuse: A decade of neglect and irrelevance, following up a long run of exceptionally good fan value. Your team has no plan, other than the continued degradation of all involved. And now that the Nationals have their own stadium, you've got a shot of being the second-class citizen in the area, too. So the degradation will continue, plus you are close enough to New York and Boston Fan to have them take over your ballpark for "home" games.

Mitigating factor: The park's nice. Eventually, Peter Angelos will die.

Your Worth as a Parent: Spending the kids' college fund and inheritance on garbage, all while telling them about the good old days. Yes, they hate you. But that's OK, because you also hate yourself.

5. Pittsburgh Pirates.

Why It's Abuse: Fifteen consecutive years -- fifteen years! -- below .500. A small market team despite the new stadium gift. Not only have you not been in a playoff, you've also rarely ever had a player that was even worth their All-Star Game slot. A team that's probably the third team in town now, behind the Steelers and Penguins. Your last playoff memories involve Sid Bream. And you want to bring a new soul into this? What are you thinking?

Mitigating factor: The park's nice. Good seats will always be available.

Your Worth as a Parent: Low, low, low. We're talking forgetting birthdays, drunken holidays, and your kids are afraid to bring anyone over. The only thing that's keeping it from making it worse is that you aren't really making an effort.

4. Cincinnati Bengals.

Why It's Abuse: Every kid grows up with athlete heroes. Yours will get to watch them be taken under arrest. Over and over again, really. The ones that won't get arrested will provoke trades or releases. Oh, and did we mention that they've never won a championship, and they'll really hate the jersey colors later, provided they maintain the ability to see in color?

Mitigating factor: Kids like the tiger colors. Roarrr!

Your Worth as a Parent: You don't hit them in public... as hard as you do in private. It's OK, though. You aren't raising pussies here.

3. Los Angeles Clippers.

Why It's Abuse: Second-class citizenry in extremes, with nearly no playoff experience, a punchline existence, and any number of tragic players over the years. But it's all OK, since Daddy Sterling makes money from your misery every year, and if he doesn't, he's moving on down to the road. Woo hoo!

Mitigating factor: Maybe they'll get to meet Frankie Muniz. Yeah, that's all you get, really.

Your Worth as a Parent: Let's not talk about it really. Kids raise themselves, don't they?

2. WWE.

Why It's Abuse: Scratch any amped-up, roid-ready pre-pubescent that's ready to stigmatize gays, treat the opposite gender like garbage, and engage in the worst kind of dumb violence, and I guarantee you... his or her parents let them watch WWE. Hell, they are probably watching it with them. And exchanging chair shots, and trying to explain why their favorite wrestlers are dead. (Bonus: Chris Benoit jokes. Lots and lots of Chris Benoit jokes.)

Mitigating factor: They'll know some catch phrases, and get along with the other meatheads at the playground. Plus, they'll know how to bite each other in the ass. That's always a win.

Your Worth as a Parent: Must... resist... Chris Benoit jokes....

1. Boxing.

Why It's Abuse: They will rarely, if ever, actually see a good fight. They'll grow up hanging in the seediest places in sports, waiting months to years to get anything close to what they want. Very few of their peers will know anything about what they are into, so you've got all of the disadvantages of Bitter Fringe Sports Fan, but with lowlifes instead of trustafarians.

Mitigating factor: They'll be able to talk fights with Grandpa and all his friends at the home.

Your Worth as a Parent: Well, on the plus side, the boxers themselves are probably worse. But only just. And maybe your little dead-ender will get the brain damage early, so you can just try again.

Add your candidates in the comments...

18 comment(s):

Anonymous said...

The fact that the Seattle Supersonics (and their impending departure) are not even listed removes any credibility this list may have had.

DMtShooter said...

A fair point. In my defense, it seemed impossible that anyone would still be a Supersonics fan.

Anonymous said...

C'mon. 100 Years of Losing. Non-lovable losers. How are the Cubs not on here? They aren't even a team, but rather a tourist attraction.

Anonymous said...

The Duke lacrosse team was innocent jerkoff.

mark said...

The Lions won a playoff game in 1991, wait, my gawd that was a long time ago

/shoots self.

DMtShooter said...

Cubs -- They spend huge jack now, and the park's a good time, provided someone isn't peeing on you. I'd vote for the ChiSox as more abusive, if only because your kid is more likely to be exposed to a Ligue.

Duke Lax -- You're absolutely right. Now, go trust your daughter with them. I'm sure it'll be fine.

Lions -- My apologies for missing the only Lions playoff win in the last 50 years. I'd say more, but Lions Fan is already off his meds.

dmk said...

How are the Buffalo Bills not on here?

1. 4 straight Super Bowl losses
2. Zero post-season appearances this century
3. Franchise on verge of moving to Canada
4. The city of Buffalo

DMtShooter said...

Buffalo's got a case, but has anyone ever been a Bills fan that didn't live there? (BTW, you forgot your most famous player being an alleged double killer. Or has he been expunged from your memory?)

dmk said...

I have never lived in Buffalo, and I was raised a Bills fan. The lawsuit against my mother is pending.

Anonymous said...

I'd sooner trust my daughter with the Duke lacrosse team than any college football or basketball team across the country.. your point falls flat with #12.

Anonymous said...

It must suck to be a Red Sox fan by blood because if you're forced to marry a Red Sox fan when you grow older you're screwed because as we all know the ladies of Red Sox Nation are quite unattractive!!!

Anonymous said...

Dude, you know how hot soccer chicks are? I spent most of my youth getting soccer ass because I played soccer. Comparing it to lumberjacking? And as far as Duke, glad you weren't the judge for that case.

Anonymous said...

Soccer, a fringe sport? WTF are you talking about???

Wizzle said...

in the USA, yeah, soccer is fringe. they draw decent for MLS games, but TV doesnt do well. the NHL sells out most of the teams that arent named florida and atlanta, so im not sure how thats fringe. but lax might be a fringe sport but it's quite huge in the north east part of the country. definitely isnt fringe there.

Anonymous said...

As a proud Vandy fan who plans on abusing his children by making them Vandy football fans, how can you not list the Job of the SEC?

DMtShooter said...

I just don't do college sports; minor leagues are minor leagues.

As for a sport not being fringe because it's popular in one part of the country... um, that's fringe. Sorry.

Finally, I got grab ass at miniature golf as a kid. That doesn't make it a sport. Same goes for soccer. (If you want to talk poon from sports, I will give it up for female middle distance runners. Legs, sweat, not anorexic or obsessed, hell and yes.)

Louis said...

I've been abused horribly by being raised as a cleveland sports fan.... wouldn't change it for the world though...

Anonymous said...

the guys from duke were innocent and lacrosse is the country's fastest growing sport, there is nothing wrong letting your kid play lacrosse, better then letting them get fat

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