If you’re a sports fan there certain events that you know will be taking place during the typical western civilization work week. The most famous of these, is the NCAA Tournament. Like a Druid counts on the spring equinox, college hoops fans can count on the NCAA Tournament starting at 1120am central time the third Thursday of March. I guess they have that “Opening Round” on the third Tuesday of March, but who really watches that?
The third Thursday of March is so ingrained in our society it’s become one of the most popular days to have a certain medical procedure. And what would an article on weekday sporting events be without the annual and obligatory link to: Lost productivity?
The NCAA Tournament grabs a lot of headlines, but let’s not overlook other major sporting events that occur during the work week. The first event on my yearly sports calendar is the Gatorade Duals at Daytona the Thursday before the Daytona 500. After that there are the day sessions during the conference basketball tournaments, followed by the previously mentioned NCAA Tournament. Heading into spring it’s baseball season. The April baseball schedule always has a lot of day baseball because it can still be cold in the evenings. During the summer the occasional NASCAR race will be moved to Monday because of rain.
Turning the corner into fall we get to the MLB playoffs and specifically the Division Series. It’s a certainty that a handful of these games will be played while the majority of people are at work. Today the Diamondbacks and Brewers started their deciding Game 5 while I was still sitting at my desk. Later in the fall there will be a few college basketball games played during the day during pre-season tournaments. Finally we have Bowl Season in and around the Christmas time.
Part of me is annoyed that these events happen while I’m working. I can’t watch, and even if the event is on local radio, I have hard time giving it my attention. With the increase in technology there are ways to get scoring updates, and listen to play-by-play. However, if you do that you likely aren’t doing a good job of hiding that you are in fact listening to a game instead of working. If the Royals ever made the post-season and had a day game I would have to take the day off. I have hard enough time paying attention on Opening Day that I usually take it off. It’s just better for everyone involved. I could DVR the events, and I do sometimes, but I usually know the results by the time I sit down to watch.
However, part of me enjoys these week day distractions. I listen to sports radio most days. Sports radio can be good, it can also be terrible. One thing is for sure. I would rather listen to actual games instead of listening to people talk about games. I’ll listen to Wichita State baseball, high school state tournaments, and even our local independent league baseball team, Wichita Wingnuts, over listening to even the most polished sports radio talker.
Right now I feel there is a good balance between me liking weekday sporting events and not liking them. They are a welcome distractions; something new, something unusual, and hopefully entertaining. They don’t happen enough that I feel I’m really missing anything. If an event comes around that I feel like I need to see, I’ll use a vacation day. As long as this balance remains the way it is, I’m going to say I like them.