Dec 032008
Authors: Caleb Thornton

I hate the week before Thanksgiving.

You see, like a typical college student, the problem is I procrastinate on just about everything. And when is everything due in the fall semester? The Friday before Thanksgiving break of course. This year was particularly fun.

Three different papers plus a test made for the week from hell, but I’m not even sure that the Devil himself could put mankind through such torture. Only school could bring on the weeping and gnashing of teeth to the extent that I felt it that week.

However, if college has taught me anything, it has been that as much as I might need to bust out an eight-page paper all in one sitting, to do so is nearly impossible.

Let’s face it, by the time you get about four hours in, what may have started off as an ‘A’ paper has now become the essay that your professor will show to future students on how to fail out of his class. Your brain was not meant to be worked so hard especially since the introduction of TV into our everyday lives.

It is in these times that just a little more procrastination is in order. We all have that one distraction that we can turn to when we really need it. For me, that distraction is sports.

Don’t misunderstand me here; it’s not that I suddenly get the urge to go out and play a friendly pickup soccer game with the other guys at my apartment who would school me if I even tried. Instead, I prefer turning on the TV to ESPN and forgetting all about that pesky paper on Lithuania that I have only just started and that is due the next day.

However, the distraction that does me both the most good and most harm has always been football. There is nothing that will keep me from finishing the task at hand more than a good college or pro game particularly if it’s my team that’s on.

If the Rams are playing an away game, and I’m lucky enough not to be at work, you can bet I will be on the couch, beer in hand, watching what is conceivably the worst network ever created (not including Lifetime), the Mtn. The same goes for the Broncos, for whom I have skipped many an assignment due on Monday.

But this year I’ve found a distraction much more dangerous to my classroom integrity and far more consuming of my time: fantasy football.

I was not always a fantasy football kind of guy; in fact it wasn’t too long ago that I thought the idea of it was quite possibly the dumbest thing I had ever heard of. Why should I care about what other team’s players are doing on a weekly basis, when I have enough trouble keeping up with my own?

But, when a friend of mine introduced me to it last year, and I got an idea of how the game was played, I couldn’t help but try it out this year.

Unfortunately, the year didn’t play out as I had planned; the immaculate Tom Brady was injured in the first game of the season, and while I tried to recover all season, I ended up missing the playoffs by just one game. But there is always next year, and thankfully I was smart enough not to bet any money my first year playing.

So, until next year I’ll continue distracting myself from the work at hand the old-fashioned way, watching ESPN whenever I get the chance.

But come next fall, you can bet I’ll be back at it trying my best to distract myself from the world around me by focusing my energy on something that is of absolutely no value to my professional or personal life — and enjoying every minute of it.

Caleb Thornton is a senior political science major. His column appears Thursdays in the Collegian. Letters and feedback can be sent to

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