All my husband ever wanted was a threesome. A threesome between him, me and sports.
So he sports-seduced me. That is, he launched a very deliberate, very strategic and very stealth campaign to lure me in to the cozy folds of sports fandom.
He convinced a woman who did not care about sports to care.
Let me say right off that I am not and have never been one of those naggy shrew types who harasses her man for watching sports with his friends instead of coming along to browse housewares. I despise that crap and honestly have no interest whatsoever in impeding my man’s love of sport, which I actually consider to be a dear and defining part of him. No, in our case, the problem was that he was always trying to rope me in and get me to participate in stuff — and I was always rebuffing these advances.
A typical scene
Him: C’mere, check out this replay of words words words, words that I don’t fully understand.
Me: Oh, no thanks.
Him: But it’s Tom Brady.
Me: I’m reading Vanity Fair.
Him: It’s an eight second clip.
Me: Jesus. As if I’m Alyssa Milano! [storms off]
It wasn’t that I hated sports — it was more that they were just invisible to me. And I was fine with that. I had a lovely, full life without sports being in it. So I was irked by my husband’s attempt to change me.
But he will say that he wasn’t, exactly, trying to change me. He just wanted sports to be on my radar. As he saw it, I should be a sports fan, as I naturally possess some of the key ingredients: I’m from sports-hyper Boston, I grew up in a sports-loving home, and also, I’m alarmingly competitive — as anyone who has ever bowled with me or played me in Settlers of Catan knows. He felt that if only I’d give it all a chance, sports would enrich my life.
It’s actually kind of sweet when you think about it.
So, The Seduction. The scheme unfurled slowly, bit by tiny bit, over the course of an entire year (2008, to be exact — a thrilling year for our home teams.) At every stage of the plan, my husband was powerfully decisive yet perfectly gentle — though of course at the time I didn’t even know I was a target. Key to his M.O.: he would open my eyes to the world of sports on my terms.
By the time summer and the Celtics/Lakers NBA championship series came around, I was ricocheting off the walls with unbridled crazypants mania. I could barely function, so brimming with berserk anticipation was I for each game. More than one post-get-together car ride was spent with me railing loudly and indignantly against people I deemed too unfocused and chatty to properly watch games with. I started watching SportsCenter. By myself.
It was around this time that my husband realized the seduction had succeeded. It had succeeded exactly as he’d planned.
(Please understand that to this day, on the Me – sports groupie Alyssa Milano continuum, I’m still closer to me. Like, I don’t blog about sports. I don’t care to grasp the meaning of WHIP or OBP. I am still and will always be creeped out by fans in body paint, and please God help me if I ever don a mesh jersey for Monday Night Football. But I now have my teams, my guys that I’m tight with. I am devoted to those teams, those guys. Plus now there’s one more thing my husband and I can do together.)
Sports-seduction. That’s what I’m saying. And you, too, can master the art. You can even start this week with the NCAA Tournament, a thing that I now know exists. Below are my suggestions for some essential moves for your sports seduction playbook.
1) Play it cool
Above all else, your lady cannot know she is a target. Sports-seduction takes time. And effort. But all your strategy and cunning must be invisible. So be smooth. Be subtle. Use a delicate touch. Every invitation and comment you utter should be given in a manner that exudes EXTREME BREEZINESS, as if you do not desire a thing from your lady.
5) Know when to conceal and when to reveal
Remember that while you are revealing a lot of stuff about the sports world for your lady, you must also decide which dumb and lame aspects of it you are going to conceal from her, lest their dumbness and lameness undermine your overall mission. Ideas of things to hide: Ben Roethlisberger, Big Baby Davis interviews, steroid chatter, Mike Krzyzewski’s voice, anything golf-related.
6) Get on the Gus Bus
Does your lady enjoy happiness? Expose her to Gus Johnson screaming his spaztastic sportscaster head off. March Madness is a good time for this. There are few things on earth more glee-inducing than Gus screeching insanities like “HE’S IN SHAPE!” and “HERE COMES THE PAIN!” and “THE SLIPPER STILL FITS!”– things that I don’t even know what they mean but I like them.
7) Highlight smarts
Your lady might think that pro sports are populated by dumb jocks. OK. But there are also intelligent athletes out there whose brainpower your lady will totally respect. So find opportunities to discuss with her the specific skills involved in playing different positions as organically as possible. I remember that a week or so before Super Bowl XLII (Giants/Pats) I admitted to my husband that I still didn’t really “get” what Tom Brady “did” — other than make babies with pretty longhaired girls and wear terrific blazers for GQ. So we ran a few plays in the living room, sketched a few diagrams on a legal pad (see below), and, for the first time ever, I had something concrete to wrap my head around. And it blew my mind, realizing just how many different kinds of physical and mental intelligence are required for that job. Now I think QBs should qualify for MacArthur genius awards. The good ones, anyway.
What TV and Movies Get Wrong About Sex. Follow her at http://meredithhoffa.com/.)