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Facebook, football & the obnoxious fan

Now that the college football season is over, I’d like to say some things about Facebook and football that I’ve been thinking about for a few years.  No matter what fan base you're part of, I think you'll find them to be equally applicable. I have lived in seven states, but I grew up in Alabama and am part of a “divided” family --- so I think I have a decent understanding of college football dynamics in general, as well as within our great state.

By way of disclosure, I use FB to keep up with my friends but most of my posting is done via messaging. I find it hard to say something to everyone that doesn’t come off sounding like a bad version of a Christmas newsletter, so I appreciate a good post as much or more than the next person. If you want to post about the team you follow that's great --- but I think there are definitely some areas where you should proceed with caution. 

Let’s start with celebrating your team’s victory.  May I suggest a 24 hour rule for those who feel they must?  You see, we already know from your status and all of your pre-game posting which team you’re cheering for.  And believe it or not, it’s next to impossible to live in our state without knowing who won whatever ballgame was being played --- so it’s completely unnecessary information that you’re giving us. 


Of course, that’s not why you post it, is it?  I get that. So if you feel the need to celebrate your victory on FB, can we at least agree that 24 hours is enough time?  After all, you don’t want to be known as an obnoxious fan, do you?

Speaking of obnoxious fans, can we just agree that all teams have them and leave it at that? There really is no credible basis for you saying, “Yes, that’s true --- but our team only has three, and team X has more than any other.”  Statements like these reflect poorly on the person who makes them and tend to leave the listener convinced you have underestimated the number of obnoxious fans by at least one.

While we’re on the subject of other teams’ obnoxious fans, can we also agree that it’s pointless to repost whatever provocative statement one of them made so that people of your team’s fan base can gasp in collective horror --- often right before taking their own self-righteous shots at the other team's entire fan base?  In statistics, this is called inadequate sampling and in logic, it’s known as a faulty generalization.  Either way, painting an entire fan base with the same brush makes you look as bad as the obnoxious fan you just reposted --- and we've already established that you don't want to be one of those!

I see some young people do this quite a bit.  Having once been that age, I understand the indiscretions of youth and their relative inexperience in life and hope they’ll outgrow it --- preferably before next season! When older people do this --- it’s sad and disappointing. At the time in their lives when they should possess some insight, they instead seem possessed to incite.
It's several months before the next game so let me make a suggestion.  Why not go back and look at your football posts and see if you said something in the heat of the moment that maybe would have been better left unsaid.  Think before you post --- you don't want to be that obnoxious fan!
"The one who has knowledge uses words with restraint, and whoever has understanding is even-tempered."  (Proverbs 17:27)

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