Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I really am a nerd, regardless what my girlfriend says...

I went down to Atlantic City for a friendly celebration last weekend. Gambling is a lot of fun for me. I've always had a mild obsession with numbers, statistics and probabilities. Which would explain why I enjoy betting so much. Even though I'm still intimidated to sit at a Poker table with the day. But I don't nerd out on anything more than sports stats, ask anyone I know. There is just something about the cumulation of statistics through the course of a season, and then those added onto a players career numbers that just gives me a major hard-on. I know, I know...what are you gonna do, you can't fight what you like. My Mother even used to buy me an almanac every year, for, dare I say, enjoyable reading.

The truly nerdiest accomplishment, may have been my childhood video game tendencies. While most kids were slashing dragons in Zelda and/or being interactive with friends. I was compiling statistics in EA Tecmo Bowl, the first legit football game for Nintendo. Now this was prior to the advent of in-game and season statistics for video games. So I, as a true obsessive weirdo kid, would play each play, put down my controller, and log the stats. Then again, and again, and again. At the end of the game, I would add it up to have full game statistics, and at the end of 16 games, I added it together for full season statistics. Quarterback percentage and yards per carry included. I was 10. I won't even begin to explain the system I had for the NY Times Sunday baseball insert.

These tendencies are odd I realize, and as an adult, I've come up with one theory. To me, life has very few, if any, certainties. I remember my Father saying that it's a classic bout of the "thinker". If you can understand both sides to any situation, with a pragmatic mind and compassionate heart, the whole world turns to grey. Actually I just said it way more poetically, but thanks for the idea Pop.

But I agree, I have a hard time taking sides. In a debate I can merely play devil's advocate because there is always a section of my conscious that believes and agrees with my opponent. Sometimes, in the case of racists and murderers and Eagles fans, it's a really small section.

So my theory is this, I think I take solace in the certainty of statistics. Black and white. Winner and loser. Numbers. Certainty. There is no debate, somebody lost, the numbers tell you what happened, and you can't argue it. It's so comforting, and with that and a mild sedative, it can soothe my savage beast for hours on end. It's also aided in writing drum parts, organizing records and an extremely systematic way of eating an omelette, potatoes and toast meal from a diner.

I can't believe a nerd of my caliber opened for Social Distortion. Jokes on you world!!


  1. I love stats too! NBA and football (not NFL, English Premier League). Luckily video games compile all your stats for you now!

  2. I'm the exact opposite of you, even by just seeing numbers i start sweating:p. That must be the reason why i'm not opening for Social Distortion

  3. I'm a fellow rock 'n roller with nerdly tendencies. I'm more into the historical, literary, and philosophical stuff, though. I think my only numbers thing is equations, when I can manipulate a weird equation into a solution i get this crazy rush. Does that mean I can open for one of my favorite bands, too? Haha, I wish I'd known you were a nerd when I met you in Atlanta last october, we would've talked a lot longer!

  4. I agree that the whole world is grey & think numbers can be as well. Statistics can be made out/interpretted to support any side, black or white...any study has an opposing study/stat proving quite the opposite. However sports stats are largely undisputable. If you like to "nerd out" on sports stats & have an interest in gambling, I am reading "Lay the Favorite" now, a memoir of sports gambling, an entertaining read so far.