A Dangerous Fantasy

You hear a knock on your door. You open your door to find George Clooney or Hugh Jackman or whoever you want dressed to the nines waiting to take you out on a date. He takes you to the perfect place, the food is delicious, the wine is perfect, and he is listening to every little detail to every story you tell as if his life depends on it. He takes you home in his Audi R8 or Aston Martin Vanquish and you ask him if he wants to come in to have coffee and what-not. Of course, he obliges.

Wake up.

Clooney or Jackman or Pitt will never do all that with you. That’s why it’s called a fantasy. Fantasies are fun, but it’s not reality. They are so fun because you have complete control over something that makes you happy.

Fantasy baseball or any other sport operates in the same way. Fantasy sports allow users to draft players onto a team, set up lineups, make trades, add or release players and even create crazy, often raunchy team names usually featuring a double entendre. The players’ statistics in real life are compiled and added to the fantasy teams thereby creating winners and losers in the league. For instance, if a hitter were to hit three home runs, and you “owned” him on your fantasy team, his home runs would be applied to your team’s totals. And if your opponent only hit two home runs, you would win that stat category (there are varying amount of stat categories and the player who wins the most stat categories wins the “game” which usually lasts a week).

Controlling your own professional sports team is every guy’s fantasy. Surprise, surprise, guys don’t want to enjoy dinner with the Jonas Brothers, but then again some guys might… Anyway, fantasy sports is a big deal as millions of users sign up and take part each year.

It can be very time consuming. For instance, I neglected to sign up for fantasy football for the first time in many years this fall so I could concentrate on my grad school responsibilities. It wasn’t easy. Sleepless nights, chain-smoking, cold sweats and the fear of a major relapse into the world of fantasy football hounded me throughout the season.

Like a lot of addicts, I am making a deal with myself for baseball season: one fantasy team and one fantasy team only. I usually create three or four teams, but I’m trying to be strong. I know I will probably cave and create another team, but for now, just one team. Complete fantasy baseball sobriety is too much to ask. (God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference. Whew…)

So with the season just one week away, preparation and scouting must be done to create a championship team. If you are seeing less of your boyfriend, husband, dad, brother, son, guy-friend etc., they are not involved in some tawdry tryst or seedy undertaking. No, they are most certainly weighing the advantages and disadvantages of Ryan Howard’s home runs and strike outs or reading every injury report available on Chris Carpenter to see if 10-15 wins can be squeezed out of his once golden right arm.

While you may be fantasizing about Edward Cullen, I and about 90% of the male race, will be fantasizing about the champagne shower in the locker room with our fantasy team after a championship.

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