18 March 2013

The Jury is Still Out--Lunch-Break Post

Ah, so I'm on jury duty, that bulwark of democracy that separates our government from all others. Unfortunately, it means that I have no internet connection until I weasel my way out of this. Weaseling out of things is, after all, what separates us from the animals. Except the weasel. I promised not to live-blog any court proceedings, but the courthouse doesn’t even have a wireless connection, and I can’t even access the web through my cellphone due to the fact that they must have built the courthouse out of lead in order to stop us from tweeting about the trial: lolz this guy is accused of sex w neighbors dog #bestiality. And so on.

Anyway, it means that I’ve schlepped my laptop all the way here for nothing. I've managed to get a lunch-break, so here we are. I was starting to feel like a character in Sartre’s play No Exit, locked in a room with about thirty strangers, and all there is to do is studiously ignore each other and let the sounds, smells, and appearances of others irritate us until someone explodes and does something memorable—and switches from juror to defendant.

Aside from nearly becoming a Fulham fan over the weekend, a curse I avoided by reminding myself that (a) they sold Clint Dempsey, (b) they sold him to Spurs of all clubs, and (c) they’re not Arsenal, there’s not a lot going on today. There’s sure to be some chatter about Spurs dropping to 4th after their loss and Chelsea’s win. I was musing over the Spurs-Arsenal rivalry and the venom it can sometimes inspire when I realized something. Hating Spurs fans is akin to hating someone who smokes cigarettes. Ponder that. For a while, it’s enjoyable, but then, despite the awful side-effects—the bad breath, the hacking cough, that lingering smell, the diseases—they persist in rooting for Spurs. They come to need it and depend on it just to get through the day.  Criticizing them for it would only cause them to get defensive, even whipping out a cigarette and blowing smoke in our faces despite our best intentions. Like any addiction, it offers moments of pleasure followed by long periods of pain and self-loathing. Rather than hating on them, we should find ways to help them to transition away from this self-abuse and towards something ultimately more fulfilling in the long run.

Now, I’m sure there’s some parallel universe in which a Spurs fan might make the same case, but it’s that bizarro-world in which Superman is a bad guy and Earth is a cube instead of a sphere. In other words, nothing in that world is as it should be.

Speaking of things being not as they should be, Spurs are above us in the table. For now.  No phone calls from Satan, teeth a-chattering, complaining about a cold front, but that could be down to the 20th century citadel I find myself in. I rather savor the prospect of chasing Spurs and overtaking them more than I might always seeing them in the rearview. I may claim to be above the venom of the North London rivalry, but I’m not above indulging in it from time to time. May we find ourselves one point back a week from today.