Friday, June 02, 2006

The First Step

...is admitting you have a problem. Or that's what I've heard anyway.

I was snooping around one of the popular internet poker sites last night and I found a list of criteria to help self-diagnose gambling addiction. Fortunately that's not a concern for me...I didn't even play one hand. But I noticed that replacing "gambling" with some version of "following the Blazers" puts my status much farther into doubt. See for yourself. (Keep in mind that other than changing the subject, these come almost word-for-word from the Gambler's Anonymous list.)

• Did you ever lose time from work or education due to following the Blazers?
• Has following the Blazers ever made your home life unhappy?
• Does following the Blazers affect your reputation?
• Have you ever felt remorse about being a Blazer fan?
• Has following the Blazers caused a decrease in your ambition or efficiency?
• After a Blazer loss, do you feel the need to watch another game as soon as possible in hopes of seeing a win?
• After a Blazer win, do you have a strong urge to return and see another?
• Did you ever buy Blazer merchandise/tickets/etc. until your last dollar was gone?
• Were you reluctant to use 'Blazer money' for normal expenditures?
• Did following the Blazers make you careless of the welfare of yourself or your family?
• Have you ever followed the Blazers longer than you had planned?
• Do you follow the Blazers to escape worry or trouble?
• Have you ever committed, or considered committing, an illegal act to help the team out?
• Has thinking about the Blazers ever caused you to have difficulty in sleeping?
• Do arguments, disappointments or frustrations create within you an urge to follow the Blazers?
• Did you ever have an urge to celebrate any good fortune with a few hours watching or talking about the team?
• Have you ever considered self-destruction or suicide as a result of being a Blazer fan? (OK, I know this last one is extreme, but not drafting Jordan in '86, Earl Strom waving off Danny Young's shot in '90, the ball slipping through Cliffy's hands in '91, Jordan shrugging off Drexler in '92, the fourth quarter collapse in 2000...just sayin'.)

Kind of scary, isn't it? How did you do?

Hi. My name is Dave. I first realized I had a Blazer problem on June 1st, 2006. At first I used to watch the Blazers socially...you know, because all the other kids were doing it. Then I started watching more and more: regular season games, playoff games, you name it. I ordered Blazer Cable. I listened to games through headphones in church. Then just following the team during the season wasn't enough. I started paying attention to the draft, internet trade rumors, summer league. Now it's gotten so bad I'm (*gasp*) blogging about them. (Moans of sympathy from the room.) Yeah...I post almost every day. I suspect this is a desperate cry for help...

--Dave (blazersub@yahoo.com)

18 Comments:

Blogger Oneill said...

Dave,
Your blog this morning has defined me perfectly. This past season I watched every televised game and most of the rest on the radio (I would have to estimate 65-70 games all together) and I would say 90% of that list is…well, me. I don’t think there is a 12 step program for guys like me and I don’t want one.

~ Oneill

9:09 AM  
Anonymous jorga said...

Oh oh. Doomed.

Suicidal thoughts? No.
Homicidal? Yes - often.

Grasping at blogs!

[Signed]
Desperate in the off-season.

9:10 AM  
Blogger Loud_1 said...

The strange thing is the worse things get the more obsessed I get. If the Blazers were making a playoff run right now I wonder if I would be checking blogs as much as I am.

After so many years in the playoffs I think the average Blazer fan has been spoiled. I hope that when the team gets back in contention that they appreciate it.

2:12 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

You know, Loud, that's the great unspoken truth of all of this internet chat. Somehow losing makes us feel like we should do something...like we can do something, even. ("I could run this better than those schlubs!") I'm not sure it brings out more talk in people, but it sure brings out more intensity in the conversations that do occur.

Honestly, though, I don't know what some folks would do if we started winning again. They'd have nothing to fix and thus nothing to say.

--Dave

3:46 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

Oneill--I know! It's pretty sad when we can't even get a two-week Blazer chip in the off-season!

LOL on the homicidal thing Jorga. I wish I had thought of that line!

--Dave

3:47 PM  
Blogger ignacio said...

These items didn't really resonate with me. I guess I'm not as hardcore a fan as some. However, I'm certainly waiting to see what will happen with the draft and/or with trades.

But I usually feel pretty detached from these guys. (Of course the Rasheed years burned me out to some extent, inflicting damage that is yet unrepaired.)

4:32 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

Sorry Ignacio. But glad to have you back commenting!

5:45 PM  
Blogger Scott R said...

Man, now that is SCARY. I'm a good fit for about 90% of those questions! Yes, i thought about pulling a tonya harding on Shaq's Knee and blaming Kobe back in 2000. Does that make me a bad person? LoL...I too would like to stand tall and say "Hi. My name is Scott, and I LOVE the Blazers."

6:43 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

Dan Majerle once stopped by the cookie stand I used to work at in the mall. I must admit, I had fleeting thoughts of what a little added horse laxative might accomplish. Fortunately for Thunder Dan and the Suns, I didn't have any on me...

--Dave

8:48 PM  
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