Sundays in America are the best Sundays in the world–that’s why God gave U.S. citizens the day off when he wrote us the Bible. There’s nothing better for a family to do today than get together on the couch, microwave up some cheese dip, and watch eleven hours of football. These are great times to teach your children all about sportsmanship and how to appreciate blunt-force head trauma, but there is something we ask you to refrain from doing. Please, parents of America, don’t videotape your child crying when his or her favorite team loses.
This seems like a natural parenting tip along the lines of “Don’t put your baby back into your wife after she gives birth” or “Children, like plants, require water,” but pointing an iPhone at a child as he or she weeps has become all-too common behavior. The likely origin of the fad is this video of a young Chargers fan sobbing and screaming, “I hate football!” after his favorite team lost to the Oakland Raiders:
This YouTube hit became so popular, Jimmy Kimmel had Chargers running back Ryan Matthews visit the little boy and reward him with a jersey:
This season, a video of a young Jets fan sobbing after a loss to the Broncos went viral. His mom’s constant prodding provoked both tears and an impressive knowledge of each AFC wild card hopeful’s upcoming schedule:
“I hate you Tom Brady,” a similar YouTube video of a young Philadelphia Eagles fan sobbing and expressing his disdain for the New England Patriots QB, was last week’s big hit:
If you want to keep these fleeting moments of childhood for preservation, by all means whip out that camera phone and record it. But please, think twice before uploading it onto YouTube. The Internet has enough of these videos now to sustain itself. If you feel you absolutely must put a video online, buy a cat.
Although, if the kid is old enough to drive, you should be able to make an exception:
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on December 4, 2011