This Sunday the Redskins play the Cowboys for the NFC East title. I am dedicating my blog this week to the renewal of the greatest rivalry in pro sports.
Some kids are raised to love sports in general. Some kids are taught to love specific teams. Then there are Redskins fans, raised to hate the Dallas Cowboys first and love the Redskins second.
My three boys are 6, 5 and 2 years old, and I am already teaching them to hate the Dallas Cowboys. They know daddy likes the Redskins, and they know we don’t like the Cowboys. I’m not sure what else they know, but it comforts me to know I’ve covered that important base.
It requires persistence and creativity to impart vehement hatred of a sports team to a child who has yet to enter the first grade. I assure you, though, that it’s worth the effort. Mamas, you only have so many years to make sure your babies don’t grow up to be Cowboys, so start ‘em young.
Dr. Seuss has proven to be an invaluable resource in my efforts to impart hatred for the Cowboys to my sons. He wrote a story about Sneetches. They were arrogant little creatures with stars on their bellies, who puffed their chests and looked down their long ugly noses at the Sneetches who had no stars.
When I first saw this I thought, “This is gold. Solid train-up-your-children-in-the-way-they-should-go gold.” What a perfect parenting tool, and perfect portrayal of the Cowboys, those arrogant under-achieving Sneetches with stars on their helmets who pompously call themselves “America’s Team” and look condescendingly on teams without stars.
Last week I was watching the Cowboys game and my 5-year-old son Issac came over to me and said, “Daddy, I don’t like the Cowboys. They have stars.”
Thank you, Dr. Seuss, you have served me so well.