Monday, October 29, 2007

NFL Live

I went to my first NFL game Sunday at Wembley stadium between the Miami Dolphins and New York Giants. There had been a lot of interest in the game, being the first regular season game to be played in Europe, and I had been lucky to get a ticket.

Numerous discussions, mostly depressing and full of stereotypes, had appeared on the internet in the days leading up to the game, on the merits and demerits of American Football versus Association Football.(1) I was not, however, put off from going.

This was, after all, a chance to see if American football was the exception to the rule I had held as self evident: that spectator sports are better 'live and in-person' than on TV. After watching the Dolphins-Giants live I'm still not sure. Yes, the experience of watching the game was better than on TV, even from a seat like mine in the upper deck, but the numerous breaks and interruptions, which stretched the game over 3 hours, were very annoying. I had also found these interruptions annoying watching American football at home in front of the TV, but not as much as when I had been at the stadium for 4 hours, was cold, and just wanted to go home!

My enjoyment of the game would have increased if I had been a supporter of either of the teams. I couldn't make up my mind of who to cheer for, until the Dolphins cheerleaders came on to the field. I find professional cheerleaders demeaning. First, because they distract from the game, and secondly, I find the promotion of them as sex symbols demeaning to both sexes.(2) I therefore committed myself to supporting the Giants, as they do not have cheerleaders! (3)

As to the new Wembley stadium, well... let's just say I wasn't impressed. Maybe I'll write a blog entry to explain what I think is wrong with it (and all modern stadia), but that will have to wait till I have more time.

1) Association Football is of course the official name of Football/Soccer, to distinguish it from other types of football such as Rugby Union Football, Rugby League Football, Australian Rules Football Football, Gaelic Football and ... yes... American Football. The word 'Soccer' derives from word 'Association' and originated, as the game did, in England.

2) The cheerleaders did, however, impress me with their dancing skills and fitness levels!

3) The five other NFL teams, beside the Giants, that don't have Cheerleaders are the Pittsburgh Steelers, Cleveland Browns, Chicago Bears, Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers. Respect!


At 31 October, 2007 14:58, Blogger karlund said...

The use of cheerleaders is an attempt to negate the boredom of waiting in the breaks.

I must say that (and I do support a team with cheerleaders) too find it demeaning, but I guess it is a good attempt to hit the lowest denominator...

At 02 November, 2007 17:56, Anonymous Andreas Müller said...

Torsten, du glemmer det vigtigste i vurderingen: om det var pengene værd:)

- ellers må du hilse, håber alt er vel derovre.

At 20 November, 2007 13:34, Anonymous Niels Tvesok said...

Det er sandelig godt, jeg overhovedet ikke er spor misundelig.

>8-[ *Grrr* #¤%!

At 21 November, 2007 19:19, Blogger Torsten Pedersen said...

Andreas, ja det var pengene værd.

Niels, vidste ikke du var fan af Amerikansk fodbold... mødte foresten to danskere i køen til undergrunden efter kampen... de havde fløjet over blot for at see kampen... respect... eller?


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