Can we leave all obvious wind ups and insults out of this thread please?
But I really want to know how otherwise intelligent people (in some cases) follow this activity. That clip of Paul O’Connell trying to pass the ball was hilarious and it’s broadly representative of the skill set of the average rugby footballer.
When I stopped watching the game in 2011, it was a mix of steroid addled gym monkeys and overweight fatties trundling into each other in straight lines. I understand nothing has changed in the intervening period.
So why do Irish people in their thousands follow it? Surely it can’t be all attributed to marketing and how the provincial “franchises” were sold to the public? I’d accept if that had a relatively short lived impact but it’s a decade or more later and still people are going to these games in their droves. Is it simply that most people are thick?
Or have people invested in supporting the activity to such an extent that they’d lose face if they admitted there’s literally no skill involved in the game? Kick up in the air, charge after it, collide and repeat.
Maybe it’s the fact there was some success (not unexpected given the best Irish players are concentrated at two provincial franchises compared to English and French players being spread around a dozen or more teams) and people like to feel part of it?
Is it the social class thing? Rugby football has traditionally been the pastime of the upwardly mobile. Are other people grasping to be part of it? Is it more the day out and the social interaction and networking that keeps people coming back?
And what about people who were subject to it from a very early age due to their upbringing or where they went to school? This might go back to the time invested point but at what stage do they admit that they’ve been sold a pup?
For example, my auld lad is hugely interested in horse racing and brought us to meetings all over the country as kids but when I got older I naturally concluded that watching midgets beating horses around a circle is a retarded pastime and I’ve no interest in the activity.
But I find that people who grew up with rugby football are very defensive about it and loyal to the activity - they’re like cult members who see no wrong in what’s a really, really poor spectacle.
The nub of the point is that there’s simply no sporting skill involved in rugby football. People go to games and cheer when a group of competitors push an opposing group of players back. Why are they doing this? People are free to do what they like - I’ve no problem with it - but I can’t get my head around this. It’s fucking mental.