I awoke this morning, as is customary at the moment, at some point between 6.30 a.m. and 7.00 a.m. Last night I had resolved to return to the gym in the morning as part of a renewed attempt to stave off inevitable, imminent decline. On the rare occasions I am in the gym I prefer to listen to podcasts over music as I haven’t found any music that I’m keen on with a suitable, consistent BPM for the level of sedate jogging I’m looking to do. This morning I opted to listen to Mandatory Redistribution Party’s 2019 UK Election revisited episode – a lovely look back at our most recent election, and a wonderful opportunity to rend from the flesh those still-fresh scabs covering the deep psychic gash which many of us on the left sustained over the last pre-Covid winter.
As I plodded along on the treadmill, listening dejectedly to a montage of key moments from the campaign, I thought about how much time and energy I have invested in following the progress of the Detroit Lions, my NFL team of choice, since 2019. I don’t know if there is a direct correlation between the disappearance of any lingering faith I had in a political solution to the nation’s ills and the appearance/resurgence of my interest in watching improbably huge fellas clatter into each other on a weekly basis for a few precious months at the arse-end of the year, but the frequency with which I’ve tweeted about the Lions has certainly increased a great deal since December 2019.
In the dog days of the school summer holidays – when I am required to be in school, if not doing a great deal, I have watched near every media availability of Lions’ Head Coach Dan Campbell (MCDC – Motor City Dan Campbell, although for some time I couldn’t shake the notion it stood for ‘Mad C*nt Dan Campbell, perhaps more apt for a man famed for his herculean caffeine intake). Why? Couldn’t tell you. But every time the big man takes to the podium with his dog-like voice, giving a refreshingly frank update on the injury status of key players, I am right there with him. I believe.
If this increased investment in sport is a substitute for engagement with party politics, then why have I chosen something upon which, on paper, I have even less ability to effect change? No idea – I’ll think on it. But what’s for sure is come game day, I’ll be on the sofa with my replica jersey on, cheering on Jared Goff and hoping that he sticks it to those other big lads bearing down on him.
I think I’m just looking for distractions. This morning I am considering going to Ikea to get some frames for the pictures we’ve not yet put up, maybe I’ll come home via the second hand. Perhaps I’m checked out – perhaps, when all is said and done, I’m just hoping to have a nice nest to burn in when the time comes.
My intention had been to use this as a lead in for an exploration of my ‘comedy is now an inherently reactionary artform’ position, but I don’t think I can achieve the clarity of thought or explanation. It’s tough being a firmly middling brain.