Make the trip, support local athletes

"Paying attention to the wider world these days reminds me why sports... feel essential to wellbeing."

Paying attention to the wider world these days reminds me why sports, as tacky and frustrating as the pro versions may be, feel essential to wellbeing.

Playing them is of course stress-reducing – whether you suck or not, just because of the physical activity – and almost always provides at least some positive reinforcement.

Pondering sports, unlike thinking about politics or religio/politics, or the arrogance/ignorance/venality of global business, can almost always lead to at least some positive impacts on lives that include them.

Watching sports live, in or out of doors, provides benefits like breathing fresh air and/or releasing emotions in generally positive ways by being supportive of either the endeavour or the participants.

Even parking in front of the tube to catch some live action (no, not talking heads, that’s as bad as paying attention to politics) has the potential benefits of providing joy, like that experienced by Chicago fans who hung in there Wednesday night, or at least excitement in a safe environment, as one hopes Bruins fans took out of the marathon Stanley Cup finals opener.

Being there where sports are played, whether as a spectator or participant, however, is still by far the best way to go. This little Home of Champions region provides the opportunity to do that at least most weekends.

I urge you to get out and go to the venues, the pool, the ball park, the soccer field or wherever, and enjoy the activity, at least if you haven’t got a, “Game On,” of your own in which to participate.

Locally, hard by the exit to the old bridge, there will a swim meet and two senior baseball doubleheaders – all within the confines of the Butler Park block, this weekend, during which there will be efforts to cheer and concessions to consume.

Way more fulfilling, and less exasperating, than anything on the rerun-reality menu on the tube, and it all can fit in with appreciating the grads of this year.

A lot of those grads, by the way, have been helped on the road to their current success and prepared for future endeavours by their participation in local sports and recreation opportunities that benefit from our support – in person and by wallet proxy – over their formative years.

The Times tries to provide scheduling information every week to make it easy for us to take part, and we should. Not much in the way of excuses for not taking part, then, other than physical limitations concerning the minor travel involved – and that’s what friends are for.

It’s appreciated by the participants and it can be emotionally and physically beneficial to everyone in the neighbourhood.

Don’t think of making the effort as being altruistic and noble, it is good for you, too.