First off, congratulations to the state of West Virginia on winning the COVID-19 March Illness National Championship. Without argument, this championship is more elusive than a football or basketball national championship.
You can win a football or basketball national championship any year, but to be the best at evading a once in a lifetime pandemic is truly the sign of greatness.
Plus this championship requires more teammates and more teamwork than your traditional athletic squad as avoiding plagues requires full participation from all residents.
A standing ovation to all of you for washing your hands and not traveling internationally.
(Save your letter to the editor debunking my theory on how West Virginia won the COVID-19 national championship. I don’t care if zero tests were administered, we still won.)
While the start of my column may lack amusement, my attempt at humor was to briefly escape reality because in reality, I am deeply saddened, heartbroken, lost, and downright depressed without sports.
I don’t know where to go, I don’t know what to do, I don’t know what to talk about, and I don’t know what to look forward to.
Netflix? Not the same.
Video games? Not for me.
Baking? No clue.
Hiking with pooch? Yep, that’s for me. This weekend I hit 22,500 steps on Saturday, then spoiled myself to a smorgasbord of meat, cheese, and grilled onions on a kaiser roll. The sandwich was named a “girls dream” and I thought that fit me perfectly.
Hiking with the Pooch, absorbing beautiful terrain, smashing delicious delicacies, and having the freedom to do so, was a reminder of how blessed I am, even without sports, but life isn’t the same.
Things I took for granted, like the ability to leave my house, may no longer be allowed.
While sports have vanished from my daily life, I still have an obligation to bring my audience stories that highlight athletic achievement with local flare.
Some of my articles over the following weeks will focus on local athletes who have had their careers ended unexpectedly and unceremoniously.
This downtime will also provide me an opportunity to look back at outstanding athletic achievements from the past. Also I want to showcase some of the creative ways athletes are training while quarantined. If you have a suggestion on a good local sports story, fire it my way.
Sports is a past time, something you do. Sports is entertainment, something you watch. Sports is a shared experience, something you talk about.
I miss covering sports. I miss the fans. I miss the players. I miss conversations with coaches. I even miss the referees. Overall, I miss my friends.
What is there in life that spans from your earliest childhood recollections until the day you die, and you care about it, in one way, shape or form?
There are very few things that make that list.
Sports are one of those things I have cared about all the way through.
Sports are timeless, yet somehow, sports have become frozen in time. o