Pastoral Musings from Rain City

it's about 'what is church?' it's about whether 'emergent' is the latest Christian trend or something more substantial. it's musing on what it means to live the city, in America, in community, intergenerationally, at this time in history...

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Blue Green Addictions

I’ve been aware, during this past week, of the power of addictions. During a typical year, I probably listen to KJR 950 Sports Talk Radio, a total of less than ninety minutes. Because I enjoy the Seahawks, I’ll listen to a Monday morning debrief of the game on my Monday drive to work. If the University of Washington Huskies go deep in Baketball’s March Madness, I’ll listen some more. When the Sonics Basketball club was good, rather than whining, I’d listen. But always just in tiny bursts of five minutes here or there.

This week, however, I’ve been addicted. I listen while driving around town – driving to the mountains – in the kitchen when cooking – in the morning when eating breakfast. I want to know everything I can about the Pittsburgh’s defensive schemes and what we’re doing to outsmart them. I want to know the latest injury reports, and what our team ate for breakfast. I want to know why there are so many Pittsburgh fans in America and so few Seattle fans. I can’t stop listening.

It’s absurd actually. In any other year, I hate pre-game hype – hate the corporate nature of the super bowl – hate the loudness of it all. I enjoy the game, but wish that the half time show was a marching band. The whole thing feels excessive, indulgent, over the top. Can’t we please just play football, and leave the movie stars, and football gurus and messiahs out of the equation?

That’s how I usually think, but not this year. Sports Radio – Sports Page – Sports Illustrated. The mild mannered sports fan has become a junkie. And I don’t like it. I’m a better person when the radio is turned off on the way to work – a better person when I peruse the sports headlines and move on – a better person when I play the piano when I get home instead of turning on sports radio and cruising web pages to see if the Seattle’s practice session went well today and listen to press interviews. The whole thing is insane. I know that. Soon it will be over – thank the Lord. Starting tomorrow at 3:30, I’ll be able to be me again; A guy who enjoys relaxing by watching a good football game, screaming a bit, getting bummed at zebras and coaches, and moving on. Go Hawks.


At 5/2/06 01:56, Anonymous Anonymous said...

are you going to be teaching @ the evening services tonight / are there evening services tonight at all?

At 5/2/06 07:20, Blogger Richard Dahlstrom said...

There will be a 6:45 service but no 5 because the low attendance at during playoff Sunday led us to combine to the two evening services. I was scheduled to be teaching in Europe this week, but cancelled in December due to matters related to our facilities expansion - so Matt Bickel, our Director of Youth Ministries was scheduled to preach today and will be preaching at all services. I'll be at morning worship and in a morning class education class about the Jesus of History.

At 7/2/06 23:59, Blogger andrew said...


carrying your thoughts on sports addiction another step into analogy, one might say that you've suffered from what the DSM (a big fat book that's a little like a psychiatrist's Bible) calls seahawks abuse; in that case, i'm at an even worse extreme -- seahawks dependence. this is an interesting perspective that i haven't really thought about. perhaps checking espn once an hour is a bit excessive. perhaps that's time that should be better spent.

however, i know that you're just sharing your personal experience, but i think all this hawks enthusiasm is more than just absurd or even negative. i think its exciting how a city can find something to bond over. its fun when there's a sense of electricity in the air. its exciting when my girlfriend, who knew nothing about football two months ago, is suddenly a seahawks fan.

this buzz is how i imagine the kingdom of heaven. its a little like how the church should be. its the communal mountain-top experience that people seek in religion.

what do you think?



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