The Breakdown: A case of cabin fever
summit daily news
Summit County, Colorado
I feel alone.
When you live in Summit County, it’s pretty much sacrilegious to curse a fresh snow fall, but that’s exactly what I did when I looked out my window Friday morning to see a solid 12 inches of over-night powder blanketing my driveway.
I know, most people in a ski town bow to Ullr every time there’s a chance of a powder day, especially this late in the year when the slopes are usually slopped with slush. But I can’t, at least not now.
I’ve just got an itch for other things. And it’s not that I don’t like winter ” or the cold, or the snow, or the skiing ” because I do. I grew up in a frigid area of the Midwest that makes our winters here feel balmy; I grew up playing pond hockey for hours, only stopping when I didn’t have enough feeling left in my hands to be able to stick handle; I’m at (a modest) 60 days on the hill already this year. So, it’s not that I don’t like winter ” I’m just tired of it.
The last few weeks were basically as good as it gets for sports ” the NCAA Final Four, the NCAA Frozen Four, the Masters and Opening Day for the MLB ” and, now, we’ve hit a lull. We’re trapped in a blizzard of unexciting sports, a desolate wasteland of meaningless games.
OK, that might be a bit exaggerated, but, really, there’s not much to get excited about right now in sports.
Watching the Masters teased us ” or at least those of us who care about golf ” with its lush fairways and perfectly manicured greens while showing us that in some parts of the country, people can actually see grass in April. Now we don’t get a tourney that truly matters until June, when the U.S. Open starts.
Baseball? Although I love watching every game possible, it really makes no difference if a team starts 10-10 or 15-5, because there are 162 games to be played, and everything can change completely with a month of amazing play (see Tampa Rays, 2008).
Now, I know that NBA playoffs begin today, and the Stanley Cup playoffs are already two games deep into the first round (yes, that’s right, the NHL still exists even though it’s only shown on channels normally reserved for European cycling events and Wyoming bull riding). It’s hard to get involved in either at this point, though. After all, in both leagues, 16 of its 30 teams qualify for postseason, then, with best-out-of seven series, it takes nearly two full months to decide a champion. If the Denver Nuggets go seven games against New Orleans in the first-round, which begins Sunday, it’ll be May 3 before the series is over. That’s more than 14 days for one series ” and a team has to win four series to win the championship.
(Tangent: Is it just me or are the NBA playoffs the biggest piece of evidence that the regular season is pointless? There are always first-round “upsets,” showing that the seeding is overrated, and players are suddenly trying. It’s strange to watch them jog and walk through 82 games, then turn it up for the final two months, especially when people pay more than $2,000 to have season tickets.)
I’m eager to see how both postseasons turn out, but it feels too far away to care right now.
And that’s my problem with the snow building up outside the window ” I don’t really mind that it’s happening now, but I’m longing for what’s down the road.
Am I alone on this?
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