Straddling the divide between art and sport


The sports journalist said  “I thought you were into culture and stuff”.

He said those words to musician friends of mine when he heard them talking – in some detail – about footy.

The idea that a bunch of musicians – “creative types” – could be interested in rugby league seemed to come as quite a shock to him.

As much as that statement has become a bit of an in-joke for us over the years, I don’t reckon that sports writer is alone.

The older I get the more I see people drawing a line between sport and art and then expecting everyone to fall on one side or the other.

Aforementioned sports journalist notwithstanding, it’s usually the arty types who come out with the “you’re with us or against us” mindset.

They’re the ones who post smug tweets during sporting events where they deliberately show how uninterested they are in the game, make “sportsball” jokes and generally perceive themselves as much smarter than the sports fans.

But here’s the thing – you can enjoy both sport and art. It’s totally allowed – I should know, I’ve been doing it my whole damn life.

I’ve done heaps of arty stuff – written books, plays, tried to write songs, tried to paint, have watched more than a few subtitled movies (only some of which were martial arts films) and know what the inside of an art gallery looks like.

But I’m a big Dragons fan. Used to be the case that a loss would affect me so badly that it would ruin my weekend.

I’m better now; these days it only fouls my mood until the next morning.

I don't question the oddness of liking both art and sport – in fact I don’t see anything unusual about it at all.

If anything, it gives me more ways to get enjoyment out of life; which can’t possibly be a bad thing.

This story Straddling the divide between art and sport first appeared on Illawarra Mercury.


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