In an earlier post, I wrote about the Canadian approach to sports, and how it's, in my view, a reflection of what I call the Canadian inferiority complex. Well, it turned out to be a self-fulfilling prophecy on Sunday at the CUFLA "Great Canadian Lax Bash" in Waterloo.
The day was perfect: sunny and very warm for late summer. There was a beer tent, a bbq, and a great venue for 6 Ontario schools to open their season. And, in University Stadium, with a capacity of about 7000 fans, there were maybe 50 to 80 of us.... oh yeah, and 5 dogs !!! Most of the people watching were parents or siblings of players. I think I was the only "fan" at the event.
I'm not casting blame anywhere. The event was fairly well run, and the day was fun. As I wrote yesterday, the calibre of the lacrosse was quite good. But I had an uneasy feeling in my gut yesterday about the turn-out. I almost felt like I shouldn't have been there, given that a son, brother or friend of mine wasn't playing.
Had this been a US college sports event, I can guarantee that there would have been plenty of support. I'm not saying that 100,000 people would've been there, but there would have been a good number of students and citizens of the town out to watch, just to support their boys. This has been a recurring pet peeve of mine about my countrymen. We just don't get off our asses to support our kids when they play, unless it's hockey, or little kids' soccer. Other sports don't seem to matter. Why is that? It's not that Canadians don't like their kids: far from it. It can't be that Canadians don't have the time to get out: Americans and Australians must be just as busy as we are. Of course, Canadians were probably glued to the TV on Sunday watching..... wait for it.....NFL football. ( Before anyone thinks I'm an NFL hater, I'm not.... although the bloody Packers might drive me to hate it soon! )
The common answer I'll probably get from my sporting buddies is " I didn't know anything about it." We are the world's worst promoters. We are too quiet, too shy, too conservative to promote anything that WE do. And, because of this, we will be perennial doormats in most fields of human achievement.
Wow, all this because only 50 people showed up to watch lacrosse on a lovely sunny afternoon. Imagine how I'd feel if I was really pissed off !!