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Meaningless Bowl Games And Christmas Cookies

Partake! It’s the holiday season!

Tostitos Fiesta Bowl - Stanford v Oklahoma State
This has nothing to do with this article. I just wanted to give this photographer $2.05 for using this photo.
Photo by Doug Pensinger/Getty Images

It’s the time of year when I go to my customer sites, and there are trays of the sweets of the season. Everywhere I look there are chocolate covered cherries, Christmas-flavored taffy, peppermint everything, and candy canes. It’s probably the same at your office.

There are Christmas cookies. Gingerbread, peanut butter, chocolate, chocolate chip - the variety is amazing!

You know how it goes. You eat a lot of this stuff during the “holiday season” and then in January; you feel guilty about how much you’ve consumed. You go on a diet to shed the weight you’ve gained. The diet lasts about two weeks, and you lose one third of the weight you should have. You “forget” to replace the batteries in your bathroom scale or accidentally throw it in the garbage and everything is all better then!

Overindulging during the holiday season is easy. It’s somewhat expected.

It’s also bowl game season.

Yearly we have to listen to people complain that there are “too many bowl games,” and “bowl games are meaningless.” “How can a team with a losing record get into a bowl game” (note that there are no 5-7 teams this year).

I view these people in the same way that I view those people who complain about too many Christmas treats at their office. They must be curmudgeonly, angry people full of humbug and disdain for anything wonderful. They would wish that George Bailey never came back from that bridge!

How sad are the lives they must lead!

Bowl games, much like Christmas candy, are a treat at the end of college football season. They are a reminder that we can overindulge in college football, mashing tons of it into a very short time because then it will be gone again, and it will not return for many months!

Bowl games are a treat for the football players. They get a bag full of goodies from sponsors, and they get to go (hopefully) to a fun, neat place like Shreveport (no) or El Paso (oh dear God) and have fun adventures that they can talk about for the rest of their lives. Someday they can tell their grandchildren about that one time in New York City at the Pin Stripe Bowl.

Why do you wish to deny them this fun?

Today is the beginning of bowl season. There are five bowl games. They’re not the best bowl games, but sometimes you have to eat Emma’s peanut butter cookies (did I ever tell you I hate peanut butter?) and get rid of them before she brings in the fudge cookies that are the ones you want.

We all know how this works. Bowl games have sponsors. Sponsors give away money and get free advertising having their name associated with the bowl game. Perhaps it’s fun for their executives who might be college football fans. Maybe their wives and families get to go.

We get to hear complaints about how the bowl games are not very well attended. It doesn’t matter that the bowl games are not well attended. What matters is that ESPN televises them and it gives ESPN content that people will watch. Who watches? Would you rather watch today’s Las Vegas Bowl between Arizona State and Fresno State or a show where Skip Bayless argues with Lou Holtz? (I realize these are not current ESPN personalities. I don’t care about ESPN personalities. Do you?)

When people talk about “meaningless bowl games,” they’re talking about the other bowl games except for the meaningless bowl game that your team is in. It’s the same as the bit I wrote about the Heisman Trophy. If it’s not about your guy, you think the Heisman is the worst thing in the world. It’s overhyped. It’s overdone bullshit. But if your guys are there… the Heisman and that bowl game mean more than a tray full of Emma’s damned good fudge Christmas cookies.

Some of us are diehard college football fans. We love our college football no matter what form it takes, and we will watch as much of it is possible over the next few weeks because we know that it’s going to go away and we won’t have any more months to come.

Why would you deny us this guilty pleasure, other than being a mean-spirited person? Why would you deny college football players their fun in the sun (or being shot at in El Paso maybe), other than being a mean-spirited person?

There are not too many bowl games, just like there are not too many Christmas cookies and just like Christmas cookies, if you don’t like them or don’t think they’re healthy or think they represent some bourgeois capitalistic tendency, you don’t have to watch them.

You may turn something else on or watch binge-watch a series on Netflix. You might choose to read or read a book and become wiser.

Perhaps you could self-help book on how to not be so damned mean-spirited and stop sucking the joy from other people’s lives.

There are not too many bowl games. They are not meaningless.

If Nebraska had made a 6-6 record, you’d have accepted the Pin Strip Bowl. You might have even gone to El Paso or Shreveport (the shrimp might be good this time of year?). You would, and you damned well know it.

Stop being such a party pooper. The Bowl Games ARE HERE!