Is it live or is it bothersome: The time and space continuum according to my stepfather

All in the FamilyI sent my mother a text the other night.

CNN was airing its very first episode of a series they call “The Seventies.”  Their first installment covered the golden age of television, an era that gave us such legendary and influential shows as All in the Family, Mash, Happy Days, Saturday Night Live and yes, Monday Night Football.

As funny as this might sound, she and I “grew up” watching these shows together. I immediately contacted her to let her know it was on.

The only problem was that, despite living in a several television household, my stepfather was watching the Cavaliers game.  Here’s the catch.  It was midnight.  The basketball game had been over for an hour.  It was LeBron’s penultimate loss, a near blowout to the Golden State Warriors, a team who ironically hadn’t won a championship since… the seventies.

He does that though, my stepfather.  He controls time and space with his remote control, stopping play while real life continues.  The game had long been over, still he was glued.  It’s something he does that I cannot and it drives me absolutely batty.

It’s a big reason why the two of us keep our sports watching events to a minimum, well that plus the fact that he has a tendency to ask the occasional question one would assume the educated sports fan should already know.  But that’s just the sports snobbery in me taking over.

gatorheadOnce a season or so, we’ll huddle around the television set on Saturday Game Days.  As we are both graduates of the University of Florida, we’ll cheer on the Gators, that is, back when they gave us reasons to cheer and not raise bail money.

Then it’ll happen.  After a big play, I’ll see my stepfather’s hands reaching for the remote control.  It was only a matter of time.

“Whoa! Did you see that?” he’ll ask.

Of course, I saw it.  It was a huge fucking play.

Then… he’ll rewind, despite my pleading “Nooooooooo!!!!!!!”  Instantly we are no longer live.  We are countless seconds behind the action.

Now what?  What in the world is going on while we’re watching that play again, one the network would most assuredly show a replay of three times over anyway.  Is a bigger play happening?  Did they score?  Throw an interception?

I couldn’t relax.  I start to sweat.

“Get it back to live!” I’d bark.  I mean, I’m the SportsChump.  I have friends sending me texts, Facebook, Twitter and sports forum accounts all blowing up in real time.  After all, I am a social media butterfly.

back to the futureDid you see THAT?!?” they’ll ask me while I’m stuck in my stepfather’s dastardly time continuum.

I’m at a loss.  I curse that DVR was ever invented.  Technology is the bane of our existence.

As a bartender, I can have twelve orders floating around in my head at once.  I can have people three deep at the bar shouting my name to grab my attention and still be as cool as a cucumber, knocking out drinks with Terminator-like precision.  But if I’m watching a game ten seconds behind real time, I freak the hell out.  God forbid my stepfather gets up to grab a soda, misses a play then rewinds again asking me what he’s missed.  I think my head almost exploded once.

Call me kooky but I can’t stand not knowing what is going on while it is actually going on.  My stepdad, on the other hand, seems perfectly fine with it.

Maybe he’s far more at peace with himself than I am.  Perhaps he doesn’t care quite as much to see these things happen in real life.  Or maybe he’s just out of his mind.

Either way, I’m looking forward to this football season.  And maybe, come September, the batteries from his remote control will mysteriously disappear.

20 thoughts on “Is it live or is it bothersome: The time and space continuum according to my stepfather

  1. The wonders of the modern age of technology. Let me pose this question to you Chris . If LBJ were playing in the era Magic , Bird or Jordan , do you believe even with his skill-set he would be able to lead a team to a championship ? If so , how many victories might he have attained , if at all ? Food for thought ?

  2. Tough to say, Al.

    Perhaps we should step into my steppop’s time machine and figure it out, huh?

    How about this more specific question?

    Had Michael Jordan not retired, would he have won eight straight championships or would Houston still have snuck in there?

    Sub-question, had Michael Jordan gone 6-2 in NBA Finals, would we still be so rough on LeBron?

  3. Bite your tongue sir.
    Tivo is the greatest invention since air-conditioning.
    …If used correctly.

    Catching up to live is what commercials are for.

    You can’t record sports…However, beer runs, pausing for RR breaks or rewinding to re-watch a spectacular play are allowed…But the cardinal sin is pausing thru more than one commercial break…That’s a no-no.

    Pass these simple rules on to Step-Doc Brown and things should work out ok for you next time McFly.

  4. I’m tellin’ ya’, Bleed.

    He abuses the privilege.

    That pause and rewind button are hit far too frequently.

    I’m not sure there’s any way to tell exactly HOW far behind real time we are but it’s an uncomfortable amount.

    I’m down with the air-conditioning but I still need my football in real time. I’ll get the brewskis during the breaks in the action.

  5. Yes the Bulls would have won 8 straight IMO. That said if they went 6-2 maybe we do cut Bron some slack. Both had to learn how to win it all. That said, once Michael did learn he didn’t lose until he started getting old. Lebron has more actual skill than Mike, but they are different between the ears. I have never in my life seen somebody want to win as bad as Jordan.

  6. OK SC – Too F’ing Funny !!! You had me laughing so hard I had to go change my Depends!
    Now seriously, it is only “higher intelligence beings” who are able to isolate themselves from the results and patiently wait until a three hour game is over, then crank up the game on TIVO/Replay or DVR and watch it in an hour , without commercials or ridiculous halftime banter !!
    Let’s hope when we watch the Gators together this Fall, that we are cheering ….. and not looking to throw away the remote…and the TV!
    xoxo pjd

  7. Chris

    Space time continuum . How ’bout Cardinals’ GM John Mozelliak stating anyone within the franchise’s front office found guilty of any wrongdoing will be punished with impunity. Let’s get this straight __ some hacked into the Astros’ organization and stole vital information . Now the FBI is involved ? Last I looked weren’t they (FBI) raiding some firm in Miami who were tied into the executives within the FIFA organization and its upper ranks ? WTF !

  8. This is one of the FUNNIEST pieces Ive read!!!

    And as an eyewitness to these events happening… I can also testify that it is ALL TRUE! Verrrrry true! The SC goes nuts while the gentleman with the remote control… seems to be operating in a “slo-mo” surreal fashion (oblivious to the ranting & raving that is going on) . And our SC is jones-in’ over-the-top.
    Lets just say, I’ve had a ring-side-seat to this other game & its pretty hysterical (and plays out ALWAYS the SAME).

    Loved this post. Great writing SC & a nice little Fathers Day love blog .
    And yes SC, I’ll help you hide the batteries 🙂 (sorry Hon)

  9. D…

    Jordan was definitely more cutthroat than LBJ, no doubt about that.

    Check this out. In 2010, I wrote a post asking if LeBron was too nice for his own good.

    http://sportschump.net/2010/02/25/is-lebron-james-too-nice-for-his-own-good/3061/

    I knew he’d eventually win a ring but I questioned whether he had that assassin-like nastiness that Bird, Magic, Jordan and even Kobe had.

    LeBron, while still dominant, isn’t the athlete he once was. He’ll be 30 and you can see his legs don’t have the spring they once did. He’s gonna have to rely on his mind more. Still, he’ a physical wonder. He’s never hurt but that won’t last forever.

    Other players are emerging that want what he’s got. It’ll be interesting to see how his game evolves over the next five years and how many rings come in that time frame.

  10. First of all, just to let everyone know, PJD does not wear depends. He’s just tugging at your shirt tails for sympathy votes.

    FYI… he wears BVDs with the elastic worn out. Don’t ask me how I know that. I just do.

    And patience? On football Saturdays? What is this patience you speak of?

    The good news is that I’ve heard positive things coming out of Gator camp this season. The better news is that it can’t get much worse than it’s been.

    I’d suggest we watch a game together this season but…. I can’t, ’cause… I work Saturday nights. Yeah, that’s the ticket.

  11. Cardinals and Patriots, Al?

    If you’re not cheating, you’re not trying?

    I’m interested in seeing how hard the FBI comes down on the Cards and what the punishment might be.

    I mean, this sort of thing is unprecedented.

    I take that back. Cheating isn’t. They’ve been doing it in baseball all along.

  12. Funny stuff SC – my problem with watching sports with my dad is that every play that doesn’t go right for the team he’s rooting for is on the refs. There’s never been a call (or non-call) by the refs that’s been right. After a while of listening to that continuously, you just have to say “oh shit, I forgot that I’m supposed to xxxxxxxxx, gotta go”!

  13. Objectivity generally goes out the window when watching with a fan like that.

    I try to remain somewhat partial when it comes to watching sporting events.

    Sometimes that’s easier said that done.

  14. I OWN the remotes in the household when live sports are on. And Rule #1 is never do anything…ANYTHING…that affects seeing live sports as they are happening. My head would immediately explode otherwise. We are one on this subject.

  15. Chris

    The FBI coming down on the Cardinals ? Isn’t that akin to the DEA’s War On Drugs or the ATF’s, dealing with their little gun running saga South of the Border ? Let me ask you this, Loretta Lynch took over as the US Attorney General based on her reputation , working in the Manhattan District Office of the US Justice Dept and based on what is said to be one of her greatest personal successes . She actually led the plea deal agreement given to HSBC , which allowed the British based financial institution to walk away with nothing more than a slap on the wrist, after their misdeeds in allowing wealthy high net worth individuals and several US based corporations to avoid paying federal income tax. How ’bout them apples for those who believe the US Justice Dept will go after the FIFA executives with impunity ?

    US taxpayers’ dollars at work, as another federal agency continues to show what a complete ###k up they just happen to be.

  16. Chris

    So Phil Jackson actually knows what he’s doing when it comes to assessing and the drafting of talent ? Based on the Knicks’ choices in the first round of the NBA Draft, this franchise won’t be going anywhere anytime soon , over the next three to four years. ‘melo is wasting his time remaining in New York , because neither Phil or the entire front office has a frigging clue.

  17. Al…

    I’m a pretty damn good bartender. But if you threw me at an office in NASA, I’d probably be one of the most useless motherfuckers out there.

    That’s the only way I can compare why Phil Jackson is such a great coach but lousy GM. Some of us are good at some things and lousy at others.

    And boy is he lousy.

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