Sports Widow by
5
(8 Stories)

Prompted By Super Bowl

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Sunday night, I could not figure out  a problem with my computer, so  I went into the den and asked my husband Lenny,  who was watching the Super Bowl, for a solution.   I started to carefully explain the situation , when  suddenly I realized that I was rambling on and conversing with myself.  “Can’t this wait until half-time?” Lenny asks.  I paused and mused……I was having a sports widow moment.

Sunday night, I could not figure out  a problem with my computer, so  I went into the den and asked my husband Lenny,  who was watching the Super Bowl, for a solution.   I started to carefully explain the situation , when  suddenly I realized that I was rambling on and conversing with myself.  “Can’t this wait until half-time?” Lenny asks.  I paused and mused……I was having a sports widow moment.

Lenny says I shouldn’t take it so hard.  Lots of women have it far worse.  For some, worse means missing your dearest friend’s wedding for the Super Bowl. Or maybe worse for some means having sex at the same time your husband insists on watching a Yankee game.  But I can’t imagine a sports widow much worse off than me.

Lenny loves almost all sports, from track and field to table tennis.  But his favorites are baseball,  basketball and football  Consider the time involved here.  There’s pro football and basketball, college football and basketball, not to mention women’s basketball. And the baseball season has morphed from 6 to  7 months out of every year!  I’d love to get a hold of the neck of the genius who thought up Monday and Thursday night football and give a good squeeze.

March is the worst.  I’m not allowed to make any social engagements for what is for me, the cruelest month, not April.  March comes in with the force of 68 games for the first round of the NCAA championships and goes out like a cold lamb chop uneaten during the “Final Four”.  And the whole month Lenny is busy recording dozens of match-ups that are shown at odd hours, and spending  all his free time watching them.

Of course, you think I exaggerate.  But I remember a day many years ago which will go down in the annals of my family.  It’s May, and the pro-basketball finals are  still  very much alive   To add to this injustice, it’s Mother’s Day.  My mother and my aunts Bertha and Jenny, are waiting downstairs for us to go to a popular restaurant for an afternoon dinner. “Where’s Lenny?”, my mom asks.  I scurry up the stairs thinking, “don’t basketball players have mothers?”  And there’s Lenny, watching the Boston Celtics.  (I recognize the inlaid floor of the Boston Garden by now.)  “Lenny”, I say in my best saccharine voice, “We’re waiting for you.  Remember, it’s Mother’s Day, sweetheart.”  (I’m not above using a little guilt.) “Only five minutes left to the game, I swear.”  I go downstairs to face the hungry hordes.  Aunt Jenny starts to complain, “I ate breakfast at 5 o’clock this morning.  I’m famished!”

Ten minutes go by.  Fifteen.  Now with time-outs, I figure the game should be over.  I casually walk up the stairs so as not to alarm the group.  “Game went into overtime”, says Lenny sheepishly.  What a game!”

I call the restaurant.  Can they hold the table for another quarter?  I mean, fifteen minutes?”  “Okay lady, but we’re getting crowded.”

Fifteen minutes go by.  Twenty.  The kvetching  has reached a fever pitch.  Even my kids are complaining.   I run upstairs again.  “What a game!  They’re in double overtime!”  I contemplate setting off the fire alarm, but I doubt that would move Lenny away from the t.v.

Right now as I write this piece, Lenny is making his way from the kitchen to the den.  “What a game!” he calls out to me.  “Come in and watch, it’s incredible!”  I can’t win and I won’t even try.  So I join him.  Anyway, some of the football players have nice tushies. 

Profile photo of Sara Gootblatt Sara Gootblatt


Tags: Sports Widow Blues
Characterizations: funny, right on!, well written

Comments

  1. Absolutely love the story. Being the wiseacre that I am, I noted with a smirk your statement
    “Or maybe worse for some means having sex at the same time your husband insists on watching a Yankee game.” Hmmm. That depends on who your partner is. (For shame, Tom)
    I’m pleased to say that, avid football fan that I am, I don’t let my watching interfere with other things. I don’t feel compelled to watch every minute these days, but back when I did, I used Tivo. I would watch the start of the game live and start recording when I left off, resuming at a later time without seeking out the final score.

    • I’m reminded of a week I once spent at a tennis camp. One evening a sports psychologist spoke with us and during the discussion one guy who played year-round on outdoors courts confessed that when it rained or snowed he turned to sex as a sublimation for no tennis.

  2. Laurie Levy says:

    I really enjoyed this story. My mother was definitely a sports widow and so is my sister-in-law. The both took the “if you can’t beat them, join them” approach. My husband has these tendencies but can be persuaded to record the game he’s into and watch it later if his team wins. By the way, welcome to Retrospect!

  3. Suzy says:

    Welcome to Retrospect! This is a great story about the trials and tribulations of being married to a sports addict! Very enjoyable! I do want to know whether you ever made it to the restaurant for that Mother’s Day meal when the game went into double overtime.

  4. Thanks so much for your generous comments! I had great hopes when video tapes and DVRs became routine, but when there’s a super important game, that often does not help. Many years ago we had tickets to a well reviewed Broadway revue called “Smokey Joe’s Cafe”. Unfortunately, the performance was at the same time as a New York Knick’s playoff game.When my husband wanted to bail on the show, I reminded him of our new VCR player. He grumbled but agreed to go to go. When we got to the theater we met a friend whose son-in-law had a Walkman plugged in to listen to the Knicks game. Our friend kidded that my husband would learn the final score, but I told him, in all seriousness, that if my husband found out, our friendship was over. We enjoyed the show, but I was unsettled and distracted. Of course, now DVRs are part of our regular habits, and I am grateful for this remarkable innovation.

  5. Welcome to Retrospect Sara!

    As a dear friend who has the pleasure of knowing your guy, and a fellow baseball widow, you know I feel your pain.

    And I’m sure you’ve heard this ploy when you catch him watching the game at an inopportune time — “I’m just checking the score!”

  6. Hilarious story, Sara, and welcome to Retrospect! Isn’t there a support group for sports widows? LOL! I saw this online…very funny: Church Starts Support Group for Women Temporarily Widowed During Football Season: https://babylonbee.com/news/church-kicks-off-new-widow-support-group-to-coincide-with-start-of-nfl-season

    Looking forward to reading more of your stories!

  7. Betsy Pfau says:

    Good story, Sara. I know men like your husband. I feel your pain.

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