First-World Sports Problems
Oh, God. You just made a huge mistake.
You wanted iced coffee, but forgot to specify. Now you're pulling away from the Starbucks drive-thru and wrestling with the bleak reality that you'll have to wait another 10 minutes before you can put this piping hot caffeine-water inside of you.
Hot coffee anxiety, along with accidentally shrinking cashmere in the wash, are the two leading causes of First World angst. After these afflictions come a myriad of other trivial and largely unimportant sports-related problems that fans and athletes deal with on a day-to-day basis.
For instance, did you know that five in every 10 fantasy football owners don't receive the amount of points they need every week? These numbers are almost unfathomable—and that's just the tip of the iceberg.
The following are some of the most prolific and devastating First World Problems in sports today—because sometimes our pettiness knows no bounds.
Getting Angry About Storm Delays
"Why is there a delay?? There's not even any lightning on the field!"
If the 50-yard line hasn't been reduced to a smoking crater, first-world fans want to play ball. If you break them down to their basic components, storms are just water and a guy wobbling sheet metal, anyways. It's not like the lightning is here or anything. The "worst of it" is miles away, probably in another county.
Never mind that entire sports teams have been killed by lightning in the past—these storm delays are just overly cautious, PC mumbo jumbo dreamed up by the league to increase ad revenue.
Going Nuts over TV Graphic Fails
Call Congress. The television ma-thingy just misspelled a player's name.
A favorite pastime of some sports fans is noticing when broadcasts mess something up. Entire web sites have been devoted to this pursuit, and I, myself, have also penned whole articles on Chyron fails and the like.
That being said, noticing and then mocking a network for misspelling "Houshmandzadeh" in a graphics sidebar is a uniquely first-world activity.
You'll never be in a part of the world where "bread" and "opinions" are precious commodities and hear someone say "Wait! Bring that back! They totally messed up Frank Gore's graphic. Gotta screen cap it."
Freaking out over Bad Fantasy Weeks
There are governments in the world currently waging war on their own citizens, but you know what really grinds my gears? Doug Martin—he's RUINING my fantasy team.
The next time you're drafting an angry social media post about C.J. Spiller tanking your shot at beating "SHOW ME YOUR TDs," just know there are people in our world living without potable water.
Sure, Russell Wilson could be a little more consistent on a week-to-week basis, but at least you're not living in a yurt hoping for the "sky tears" to fall and save your way of life.
All you want in this sweet world is to watch the 49ers beat down the Raiders, but the networks and your cable provider are biscuit-stomping your buzz.
Is it your fault you're in New York and the Jets are playing the Giants in the same time slot? No, this one's on you, geography. Now you have watch the delayed feed off the "American Football" mirror on some European sports site. Great, now you're tangling with Interpol.
If you don't want to do that, you'll have to settle for the lowest of the low—following the box score on your iPad like a common serf. It's so laggy, embarrassing and definitely not the end of the world.
Complaining About Your Team Winning
Complaining about your team winning is a fine and delicate art.
It takes a certain "Je ne sais quois" to whine about not completely destroying another team—and by "Je ne sais quois," I mean a "crippling sense of egotism."
If you've ever complained that an athletic contest "shouldn't have been this close," you've probably never had to think "If I play dead, the hippos might not charge me."
Complaining About Bobbleheads Being Late
"A bobblehead promise is a promise kept!"
A late shipment of Mariano Rivera bobblehead dolls had New York City residents up in arms this September. The team had promised they would give out the commemorative keepsake to the first 18,000 fans who showed up to the game against the Tampa Bay Rays.
Several mechanical issues delayed the shipment, however, and Yankees fans were forced to watch several innings of the game without their Rivera-heads. It was a huge blow to the organization and the social fabric of New York, and some Yankees fans claimed it was "the biggest disgrace" they ever witnessed at Yankees stadium.
Having to Listen to the Game on the Radio
If you can't see Cam Newton sulk in 1080p, what's the point?
Sports are supposed to be viewed in person or on flat screens—preferably both. If you can sit first row at a Colorado Avalanche game and watch it on their new Jumbotron/spaceship, you're doing it right.
But listen to sports on the radio? How about we just learn the Charleston and make some mimeographs while we're at it. Listening to the game on the radio is tantamount to cruel and unusual punishment—that is, unless you're a member of the 80 percent of humanity that lives on less than $10 a day.
In that case, it's just the only way you have entertainment.
Having to Charter Extra Private Jets
Having an entourage isn't easy, right?
You've got to tell them where to go, come up with stuff for them to do and generally watch over them as they watch over you. It's like hiring a babysitter, but more expensive and just for yourself.
That being said, Floyd Mayweather has it the worst when it comes to entourages, considering he has to go through the hassle of chartering an extra Gulfstream just to lug his four bodyguards around from gig to gig.
Why does he have to do this? Because their combined weight will weigh down his JET ENGINE-POWERED aircraft and crash it, of course.
Whining About Stadium Music
I have a knack for whining about stadium music, as some of you may know.
I don't like when songs about overcoming shyness are played before teams run on the field, and if it were up to me, "Unbelievable" by EMF would be banned permanently from all major ballparks.
That being said, nitpicking over stadium music a lot like complaining about the flowers on the table at the Bonefish Grill—petty, and a dead giveaway that you've never had to retreat into the brush to avoid participating in a coup.
Holding out over Contractual Demands
This isn't UNICEF. This is the [NBA/NFL/MLB/EPL/SEC]. You don't just play the game for charity—you do this for the skrilla. The greenbacks. The cash-money.
Sure, you play for the fans, but at the end of the day, this about you putting cheddar-bacon burgers on the table—cheddar-bacon burgers your children need to survive.
As Latrell Spreewell once showed us, it's not selfish for a millionaire to hold out for more money. They've got a family to feed, too.
Also, did you know that 1.6 billion people in the world don't have access to electricity or modern energy resources?
Not Having Lighter Fluid on Hand to Burn a Jersey
Do you like throwing away money on knee-jerk reactions? Do you have a tenuous grasp on the important things in life?
If so, you might be this Texans fan, who recently doled out $200 in cash so he could buy the jersey of a non-elite NFL quarterback and burn it in a parking lot. It was an uphill battle, however, as the fans present didn't have any lighter fluid on hand to burn the jersey. What a hassle!
Fortunately, some hero stepped in with the requisite accelerant and $200 worth of Schaub jersey went smoking into the ozone. That's not the stench of smoldering stupidity—that's just what "freedom of speech" smells like.
Stadium Booze Prices
You know what's a real kick in the shorts? How a guy can't drink on a budget at the ballpark at most venues anymore.
You're already shelling out big money for tickets, you think they could at least cut you some slack on the booze.
The $10 beer they're selling at the snack stand costs $2 down the street at the corner store. You just wanted to get a buzz going on a Sunday afternoon, not buy the stadium.
League Fines for Illegal Hits
"Aw, man. The league docked you how much for that hit? $20,000?"
This is a first-world problem unique to NFL players such as Donte Whitner. The San Francisco 49ers safety is changing his name to "Hitner" in order to protest a number of fines the NFL has thrown his way for illegal hits made during the course of his pro career.
Whitner is being charged thousands of dollars for doing his job wrong, but considering he's making $3.85 million this year, he'll probably find a way to stay afloat.
Getting Caught Accepting Money for Play
Some countries view college athletes accepting money as a huge deal, while other nations are just happy to have colleges.
Is Reggie Bush a crook for accepting benefits at USC? Maybe, but it's doubtful anyone would've looked sideways had he played in a nation without an iron-fisted entity like the NCAA.
It takes a lot of money and man-hours to sift through mountains of booster receipts and recruiting letters, and it's probably safe to say that no institution in the world spends more on monitoring student-athletes than the NCAA.
DVRing the Game, Only to Miss OT
We've all been there before: Your boss wants you to work late, and you realize you're going to miss the game.
You call your roommate or significant other and ask them to DVR it. Boom. Taken care of. You turn off your phone and bury your head in your work, planning to watch the whole thing as if it were live as soon as you get home.
Miraculously, you pull it off. You get home and watch the game come down to a last-second, fourth-quarter thriller and—RECORDING ENDED.
They forgot to record the half hour show after the game, and now you're left reading the cold post-mortem box score of how your team lost in overtime. After this, you set the alarm clock on your iPhone, push away that book you've been meaning to finish and go to sleep an angry, angry beaver.
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