Monday, January 24, 2011

Bear Down

The Chicago Bears played the Green Bay Packers yesterday in what was one of the most anticipated football games in recent Chicago sports history. 

Before yesterday, my son had shown little interest in watching sports on television.  I think a lot of dads try to infuse their own love of sports onto their sons.  I haven’t had too much success at it with Kai, however, though I usually don’t force it on him too much. 

But, I really wanted to see yesterday’s game, so I set expectations that Dad would be watching football most of the afternoon.  Kai said that he would watch, too.  My wife set up lunch in the family room to make it more of a special event. 

As game-time neared, Kai got more and more excited.  But, I was still skeptical about how long he would be interested in watching.  Before, he would watch for short periods.  Numbers, such as the score and clock, would attract his attention, but it usually doesn’t last very long.  So, I almost never see more than a quarter or so of any game.

When this game started, I pointed out all the numbers in an attempt to maintain his interest: 1st quarter; 1st down; 10 yards to go; 35 yard line; 65 yards to go for a touchdown.  There are a lot of numbers in football.

As the Bears fell behind quickly, my enthusiasm for the game diminished a bit.  But, Kai still wanted to watch.

At halftime, the plan was to run out for our weekly trip to the library.  Kai protested that we would miss the game.  I insisted that we go.  What Bizarro World did I step into?  But, we had movies that were due back so we went to the library.  But, he was too angry to look for any books or movies.  He didn’t even want to find any Kidz Bop CDs.

He was angry that we ended up missing a few minutes of the game, but he settled down quickly.  For most of the second half, he was more interested in doodling numbers than in watching the game intently.  But, he still looked up when I cheered as the Bears mounted a comeback.

In the end, the Bears fell short.  But, I got to see most exciting part when I normally would be doing something else with Kai.  Maybe we can still share a father-and-son love of sports.

Now, can anyone find the Bears a better quarterback?

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