Tuesday, June 29, 2010

America No Longer has A Pastime

In the early 20th century it was no doubt that baseball reigned supreme. People flocked to players like Babe Ruth and Joe Demagio. The players were clean, and the game was too. Flash forward to today; corked bats and steroids have tarnished the game, and it seems that football has become the sport of this century. But I for one think that Americans are not the kind of people to settle for one single sport to be the "National Pastime." Instead I feel America has the "Triple Crown" of pastimes if you will. This core group is made up of football, baseball, and hockey. There is no doubt that people flock to NASCAR, and every 5th grader plays soccer, but the before mentioned three catch the hearts of Americans like no others can do.

1.) Baseball- Many people feel like baseball has fallen out of relevence since it's peak in the 20th century, and to a certain extent their right. Player juicing themselves up paired with a federal investigation didn't really make for the greatest PR. But there's something about getting to the park early for some BP, filling out your program as the game goes on, and singing during the seventh inning stretch that just screams nostalgia. Baseball is more than a game of shear athleticism, it also requires thought and fenes. More than that, baseball has been bread into each American since it's creation. So no matter if it is the most popular of the triphecta of American Pastimes, but it does best represent our American heritage.

2.) Football- Representing the new era of sports. Sure you had Joe Namath, Terry Bradshaw, Lynn Swan, and the like last century, but this new century has meant football's gaining of star power. Tom Brady and Payton Manning are more superstars then they are pure athletes, Terrel Owens and Chad Ochocinco more entertainers then they are wideouts. Players have gone from making pennies on the dollar compared to their baseball playing counterparts in the 50's to blowing Americas long held pastime dollar-for-dollar in the payroll section. The full on in your face contact of football caught America's attention in the 70's and continued to grow into the multi-gazilion dollar money making machine it is today. This is hands down the hansom older brother in the family that is our Trio of Pastimes.

3.) Hockey- Canada's hidden secret made it's way to America in the early 20th century, though not really becoming popular until the 70's. Names like Gretzky and Lemuiex gave the game the excitement and fan base it needed to propel itself into the big time in the 2000's. Now names like Crosby, Malkin, and Ovechkin keep things moving up for the NHL. The one thing that binds everyone together around hockey is one simple thing, the fights. People love to see two mean drop the gloves and just duke it out on the ice. Yes between hockey fights, hat tricks, and Lemuiex's five for Austin, magical moments on the ice excite us in a way no other sport can.

America is a country that doesn't need to settle for one sport to provide them with all the excitement they want, because they have three sports to effect them in different ways. You have baseball which employs thought, fenes and nostalgia, hockey which gives us our dosage of devastating body checks and hockey fights, and football with it's higher then life superstar sports figures and fingertip passes. These three core components of America's sporting lineage should be held on a pedastool and hailed as Americas Trifecta of the sporting world.

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