Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I hate sports.

How very unamerican of me, but I've never been interested in sports. Not really interested in playing and DEFINITELY not interested in watching. I fail to see how watching other people play a game can be enthralling, and why is chess boring to watch but football is popular? Are viewers just getting off on the movement? Is it a living vicariously thing? Whatever, I don't get it...but that's not my point.
I know I'm not alone in my lack of enjoyment of sports, there are plenty of people who are just plain don't care and want absolutely nothing to do with it. That's not really my point either, though.
What's bothering me is how it's assumed that sports is such a part of mainstream life that EVERYONE wants to participate in it.
I recently got an HDTV and subscribed to Verizon's FiOS TV service. As part of this service I've been gifted with what looks like a dozen sports channels, NFL, Nascar, NHL, NBA, etc. And that's just the HD side of the dial. But I don't get Shotime, so I can't watch Dexter. I want to watch Dexter, I don't want to watch sports...and more to the point I will NEVER want to watch sports. There is no way for me UNorder the sports package, but to get Shotime I have to sign up for a movies extras package that costs $14.99 more a month. I get the movie channels being their own package, they're specialized and generally of a higher caliber than the other channels. But sports programming is specialized, regardless of whether its proponents would care to admit it. Why can't I opt out? I'd gladly pay for the movie channels if I didn't have to pay for this sports crap I'm not watching.
Anyway, I was almost over my nerd rage at that annoyance when I went to update my phone's OS. Out of the box, and again with this update, the phone has some stock applications. Many of these are useful generic things like youtube, google maps, sprint navigator, etc. But the update also re-installed 2 sports specific applications: NFL and Nascar. Now I'm not really complaining about the inclusion of these applications in the phone or the update...I'm sure NFL and Nascar paid Sprint or Palm some good advertising money to get a presence on the phone. The problem I have is that I can't get rid of these things. Well, that's not true: I can. But I'm not the vast majority of the population. The only way to get rid of these applications is to 'root' the Palm Pre, that is use the hidden developer mode to gain shell access to the phone, then use that command shell to delete the application directly from the phone. The UI that you would normally use to remove any other application simple doesn't give you the option to remove these.
While that situation doesn't have the trade off the TV one does, there's nothing I could be getting instead of these applications, it's still frustrating I can't get rid of these things that are absolutely useless. I don't like sports, I want to get rid of these applications, I want to get rid of these channels.

Liking sports is a choice you made, not liking sports is a choice I made. Why do you feel your choice has the right to screw with mine?