(Houston, TX) Meet Daniel. Daniel is a 23 year old software engineer fresh out of college. He works for a company and on weekends, passes the time fulfilling himself by performing activities that he enjoys. Sometimes those activities include watching a documentary on the dying coral reef. Other times it means making tiny dolls out of recycled soda cans. A little weird, but we all have our quirks. However, there is one thing that you will never find Daniel doing on weekends, and now it’s become his biggest secret. “I’m not a sports fan,” Daniel confesses. “I’ve been living a lie.”
“It all started back in middle school,” Daniel began. “I had just gotten kicked off the football team for trying to perform a blood pact ceremony in the locker room and I thought my life was ending. Turns out it was all a misunderstanding, but I was no longer going to play for the football team. I was so relieved.”
You see, Daniel didn’t want to be on the football team in the first place. Daniel had been signed up by his parents and never had the heart to tell them that he hated the practices. He hated the aggression. He hated the boys trying so hard to be men. But, instead of tell them, he decided that faking a blood pact ceremony seemed like an easier idea.
“Yeah,” Daniel said when we asked him about it. “Still seems like a solid plan.”
For the next few years while finding himself in middle and high school, Daniel had no problem blending in as a sports fan the same way that he always had: by simply smiling and nodding.
“You see, most sports fans don’t really care if you like sports or not,” Daniel explained to us. “They just want you to know that they are a sports fan. So yeah, I pretty much have just smiled and nodded through every conversation about sports for the last 23 years. Even when I played sports I had no idea what I was doing. I just kind of ran around and hoped for the best.”
Even in college, Daniel kept up the charade. He’s even still in his college friends’ fantasy football league and can’t seem to get out of it. It’s been a nightmare.
Daniel thought that after college things would get better, but somehow it got worse. Daniel now has to live his life as a passing sports fan, only presenting as one in order to feel accepted by wider society. “This isn’t me,” Daniel told us in an intimate moment. “I just want to be myself, but it’s so hard to be yourself when everyone wants you be something else.”
Daniel might still be in the proverbial closet, but we know the truth. You take your time Daniel, the world may know you as a sports fan now but one day they will know you by your true passion: writing Phineas and Ferb fanfic. Oh god, really? Well, be yourself I guess.
Maybe just, don’t be that.
This article was written by Nathan Ellwood on a Monday. Follow him for more on Twitter @NPEllwood.