I watch exactly one football game per year, the Super Bowl, and I have no idea whom to root for. Is there any reason for an Oregonian to prefer one side over the other? The Seahawks aren’t playing, right?
—The Young Poet
You know how I can tell you’re not kidding? Real football fans never ask “whom” to root for. “I pray you, good sir: For whom shall I root in this sporting contest? And thruppence-worth of your finest nachos forthwith!”
That said, young Joseph Ducreux (Google it), I’m pretty much right there with you. In the unlikely event that anyone with actual knowledge of the game of football is still reading this, you can probably stop now. For the rest of us, here’s a brief-yet-helpful guide for picking sides in a sport you don’t care about.
First, find out if the New York Yankees are playing. If they are, root against them. In this case, after a few quick phone calls I’ve determined they’re not. You’re welcome.
Next, find out who your least-favorite co-worker is pulling for (let’s face it, what are the chances that guy’s not a football fan?) and back the other side. In Portland, this probably means you’ll be siding with the Baltimore Ravens. Also, they’ll probably be wearing purple, which is a nice color.
But you’re looking for a specifically hometown-ish way to pick your team. Maybe some of the players are from Oregon.
All props to The Oregonian; it has been tracking this possibility all season in something called the “sports section.” It appears that two of the Ravens’ players, Ed Dickson and Haloti Ngata, and two players for the San Francisco 49ers, LaMichael James and Will Tukuafu, played college ball for the Ducks. So there’s no edge.
Frankly, I still think your best bet is to root against Larry from accounting. God, I hate that guy.
QUESTIONS? Send them to firstname.lastname@example.org