Hey there, Paul here.
What’s up? How’s it hanging? How are you? What’s new? What’s the word, big bird? ‘Sup? Issa are you okay, are you okay, are you okay, Issa?
I expect responses to each of those questions, as well as a realization of what song that last question was from.
Never mind, no responses are needed! Greeting questions like that are annoying. As a society, we need to get rid of them.
This letter is going out to you in Nairobi – the capital city of Kenya.
I don’t know why I’m reiterating facts you already know. Perhaps it’s because I did some research before writing this letter and have been preconditioned by school to regurgitate researched facts.
You asked me what the first thing I’d do in Nairobi if I were to go there.
I really don’t know.
I’d probably find a restaurant and look at the menu as if I don’t know what food is. Then I’d order something I’m sure won’t send me running to the washroom for the duration of my trip. You can never be too careful with ordering food at restaurants.
Failing that. I’d probably take a picture of a street with buildings off in the distance and post it to social media with the caption: “I’m in Nairobi and you’re not.”
I don’t know, what should be the first thing I do in Nairobi?
Now then, you didn’t ask me to tell you a fictional story, but you did ask me to tell you about how my favourite teams do in baseball, basketball, and American football because these sports might as well be fictional to you.
Alright, buckle up. I’ll try to be as clear as possible and sprinkle some humour in to keep your attention.
We’ll start with baseball. There are 30 teams in Major League Baseball. 29 of them are in the USA. 1 is from Canada. American TV networks pretend that we (the Canadian team) don’t exist.
And when they do acknowledge our existence, they assume we know nothing about baseball because we live in Canada.
“They don’t know how to catch in Canada because they grow up playing hockey.” – Direct quote
Stupid, they are.
Alright, so there are 162 games in a season and they play just about every day from April to the end of September. And then ten teams make the playoffs, which are played in October.
Baseball is like cricket, except less confusing. I’m sure you’d tell me that cricket is less confusing, but hey, I’m the one writing the letter.
As for my team, the Toronto Blue Jays, they won the championship (which is called the World Series, even though it’s not a global league) in 1992 and 1993. Then they didn’t make the playoffs again until 2015 and 2016.
This year, they aren’t very good, but a lot of fans have been blinded by recent success and refuse to accept reality.
Moving on to basketball. There are 30 teams (29 American; 1 Canadian) and they also like to imagine that the Canadian team doesn’t exist. Notice a trend?
They play 82 games before the playoffs.
My team, the Toronto Raptors, have been really good for the last four years or so. But they have no chance of winning the championship for at least another ten years, if ever. It’s just not possible.
Oh but Paul, anything can happen in sports!
No! The NBA is all about star players. None of them want to play for Toronto because we’re seen as “that team in a cold country.” Meanwhile, we’re just as cold as New York or Chicago.
So unless we are drafting superstars (we aren’t), then we aren’t going to win anything. We’ll just be really good and that’s it.
As for American football (NFL), I’ve been losing interest in it over the years. I don’t cheer for a specific team, though when the playoffs roll around I’ll attach myself to the New England Patriots because I like to cheer for the underdog.
*The New England Patriots are the furthest thing from an underdog.
I enjoy Canadian football (CFL) a lot more. The field is wider so there is more space to run. There is more speed in the game. The pace is much quicker. It’s more entertaining.
In America, when there’s two minutes left in the game, sometimes nothing will happen and a team will just let the clock run out.
In Canada, you can’t do that. Our play clock is only 20 seconds, as opposed to 40 seconds.
That probably means nothing to you.
But with Canadian football, there is always a chance for a late game comeback which adds excitement. In American football, there isn’t always that opportunity.
Unfortunately, a lot of Canadians see our football as lesser than American football. People here like to attach themselves to things that are “cool” and the NFL is considered cool to them.
I’ll never understand it. Outside of the Super Bowl and some playoff games, I’d prefer to watch the CFL. Even then, though, I might not sit through an entire game without flipping the channel.
If you understood any of what I just said, blink twice.
You like football, which we call soccer. I’ve tried to like that sport. I’ve faked my way through it over the years. But I just can’t tolerate it. There are too many people on the field, if you ask me.
Make it 7 on 7 and shorten the game to 80 minutes and then maybe I’ll watch. Also, give red cards to the players who fake injuries for half an hour.
Do you like rugby? I like rugby.
Alright, good talk.
Well, Issa. I best be off. To where, I don’t know. But when I get there, I’ll be sure to take a picture and post it with the caption, “I’m sitting on a couch, and you’re not” or something.
Have a great morning, day, night, and overnight!
With a Canadian accent,
P.S. I wrote this letter while listening to Michael Jackson songs. Hence the “Issa are you okay…” bit at the start. Hopefully you get the reference.