Normal people who walk the streets, when home alone, turn into freaks.
famous poet Mister Christopher
The city: Wheeling, West Virginia. The place: Marriott Hotel.
I was booked for a single room for the weekend because I was standing up in a wedding for a friend. Along with my room came free access to an all you can eat breakfast buffet: bacon, eggs, waffles, toast, fruit and did I mention bacon? I love bacon so I got to the dinning hall early; that gave me plenty of time to delight in three or four plates of free food.
As I sat with a plate piled high of crispy bacon, across the room I noticed a Klingon eating bacon too.
Yes, that's right, I said a Klingon. As I looked around there were all kinds of strange people eating breakfast: a Vulcan was chomping on a banana while reading the newspaper, an Andorian was sipping on a glass of orange juice and a Captain Jean-Luc Picard lookalike was making waffles! "Oh no," I said to myself, "this hotel is also being used for a Star Trek convention!" I felt like a captive on the USS Enterprise who was being served his last meal before being shipped to Rura-Penthe, the Klingon prisoner planet.
Did you ever realize, humans beings are the strangest race of all?
I once did a google search of "sub-cultures" in America. You wouldn't believe some of them:
- gamers: A "gamer" is someone who plays video games or board games.The term nominally includes those who do not necessarily consider themselves to be gamers - "casual". To those who spend a notable part of their leisure time playing or learning about games - "hard-core".
- groupies: These are people who follow a specific rock group or music genre and frequent clubs and concerts of their interest as much as they can (Goth, industrial, cybergoth, emo, blue-grass, rockabilly, etc...)
- survivalists: They are individuals or groups who are actively preparing for emergencies, including possible disruptions in social or political order, on scales from local to international. (Includes Political Anarchists to religious end-time fanatics)
- fandom: These people are characterized by a feeling of sympathy and camaraderie with others who share a common interest. Fans typically are interested in even minor details of the object(s) of their fandom and spend a significant portion of their time and energy involved with their interest, often as a part of a social network with particular practices. (Ie. Harry Potter fans, Dr. Who fans, Lord of the Rings fans, My Little Pony fans, DC/Marvel Comic fans, Twilight fans, Hunger Games fans, etc...)
- miscellaneous: scrap bookers, instagrammers, bingo players, glamour campers, casino junkies, etc., etc., etc......
The list can go on and on and on -- you catch my drift? Most of the listed subcultures are occupied by the more cerebral and off-beat personalities. Often they are choosing their specific subculture as a protest against the sports obsessed culture all around them. To the average person they seem awfully weird; people living on the fringe.
But tell me, how are they any different from sports fans? People who spend their life playing fantasy football, glued to Sports Center, or traveling with their kids to make it to the next wrestling match, track meet, & AYBT basketball tournament. Face it, they are just as strange as a Trekkie or Whovian, aren't they?
"Well...sports fans at least live in reality; the sci-fi freaks are just zoned out in fantasy!"
What do you think God would say to your argument? Do you think he has a picture of Knute Rockne & Lou Gehrig on the walls of his palace? Does he throw heavenly demerits at the guy dressed up like Luke Skywalker? I think he would say both offer people positive returns (friendship, leisure, enjoyment); but if not watched closely they both can take complete possession of your life. I believe there are three ways to tell when you are at the mercy of your sports team or super-hero:
1) IDENTITY: if the first way you see yourself is by your group, hobbie, interest or sports team, there is definitely something wrong. According to Galatians 2:20, "I am crucified with Christ." His person and purposes must be the way I see myself first and foremost. Not as a Cleveland Browns Backer or Bronie.
2) OBSESSION: what do you think about most the day? Do you start your day off with Espn, Phineas & Ferb, or a verse out of Psalms? What are most of your brain cells filled up with: useless trivia or words that can help sustain the weary? Read Philippians 4:8 and tell me how you do on that scale on any given day?
3) COMPASSION: do you disregard the needs of people around you because your obsession has taken over you? Oh, I know, another Tigers game is on right? You must watch it instead of helping raise money for the neighbor with cancer, or walking for Alpha's women center on Saturday afternoon? You might miss that really funny Sponge Bob episode where he ripped his pants instead of going to a Sunday Night service to pray for a local missionary. By the way, how many Major League Baseball games are there in one summer season; something like 200,000 give or take a few, right? Will one missed game kill you?
Slavery isn't just being chained to a specific sin; but it also can come in the form of being mastered by you leisure time activity. How much of your money has been spent on something that only exists in the fantasy world of your dreams? How much time has ticked away while watching the 100th viewing of your favorite movie dressed in the costume of your favorite character? (think...Rocky Horror Picture Show)
It's o.k. to be a fan or a freak, just don't let it become you!
By the way, if you are an NBA fan, you could have turned off your TV for a whole year, from June to June, and you wouldn't of missed a thing: the Spurs are still playing the Heat in the finals.
Go Spurs! (sorry Derek)