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Dr-David-Banner

How Can Football Be The Most Popular Thread??

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Dr-David-Banner

Guess I never dared ask. However, many times I casually wondered. Close to 2000 replies yet, to be honest, I always viewed football as the very opposite of the autistic mindset. I mean, autists for one have low empathy so collective joys or losses don't usually register. I mean, I recall once some guy came up to me traumatised England hadn't won the World Cup or something. Frankly I couldn't have cared less either way. Sure, I used to support Frank Bruno but Frank was a boxer in a solo sport - not a team affair.
I could go on endlessly why I sort of despise football and maybe someone somewhere even shares that outlook? Maybe too it goes back to school where team sports were used to judge the value or popularity of the pupils - only on the basis of being able to kick a ball through a set of posts!!
The closest I got to any team sport was pro-cycling although I think guys like Armstrong or Ullrich had more opportunity to be more individual. Plus the cyclists were often articulate or had some genuine personality - Lance gave to Cancer research.
Conclusion? What a pity the most popular thread wasn't to do with space exploration or even something like martial arts.

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Nesf

There's no set rule as to what an autistic person may or may not be interested in - that sounds like stereotyping to me. We aren't all into trains or computers or maths. I keep hearing how people with Asperger's are supposed to be some sort of maths genius that never stops talking and can't learn foreign languages, but I suck at maths, am good at learning foreign languages, and don't talk much. We are all individual people and what we are interested in is a product of our environment and our personality. Actually, lots of people on the spectrum are into sports. I don't know whether it is true or not, but I've heard that Lionel Messi is on the spectrum.

I'm not into sports either, and find them boring. Watching sports on TV is basically entertainment, a spectacle, and you don't learn anything. I guess I need/value information and knowledge over entertainment. I have been to a couple of football matches, but it didn't do much for me.

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Primeape

@Dr-David-Banner sounds like you look down on aspies who like football or any type of sport (apart from cycling):mellow: 

 

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Primeape

Its sad to see Aspies being judgementful towards other Aspies just because of interests 

We are all different people,  like @Nesf said not every Aspie is going to be into trains spotting maths and computers

I feel (and its a shame) that you are trying to single them Aspies out, you mention about being singled out in team sports in school, yeah loads of Aspies was, even me.....but now your doing the exact same has them popular people 

 

 

Edited by DebzMata08
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Dr-David-Banner

I was once heavily into bodybuilding and even met some of the Pumping Iron stars. The great thing about bodybuilding then was it's a very self-orientated sport. I also developed a pretty good knowledge of classic boxing from the Ali Foreman era. Ali by the way was an amazing personality and awesome athlete.
Still with close to 2000 hits I'm not shy to say I am kind of stunned a thread on football has eclipsed other alternatives. In fact I always figured when football can offer huge salaries that dwarf what a scientist or artist could ever dream of, how can society ever move forwards?
In real life I'm very honest about this. Those who make the mistake of asking who I "support" get a polite but honest response. I just tell them I can't stand football - period!

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Willow
  • A person's hobbies or interests does not determine their intelligence or intellect.
  • Stating that people on the Autistic Spectrum aren't typically empathetic, is a very narrow minded viewpoint, usually reserved for those who have little to no understanding of Autism.
  • There are many generous, philanthropist footballers, that have given millions to various charities. 
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Asgardian

@Dr-David-Banner Seeing as I started that thread I feel I have a right to say something on this matter. Primarily, you have started numerous threads which have I no interest in and yet I have never said a word because I have no issue with that. You should show more respect to the interests of others.

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Dr-David-Banner

Empathy I think is a deep issue but sometimes it's used in the patriotic sense. That is, shared sense of joy, shared sadness of failure. For me football embodies this collective mindset.
I tried to word this thread without hopefully appearing "picky". I was curious whether it would cause some feedback but I figured it polite to put it apart in a different section. It may have been better located in Debates.
Sometimes I just like to up and say what I think which isn't great for popularity but, maybe it will stir more people to post.
Why on earth does society idealise footballers? I remain baffled.

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Dr-David-Banner

Ah, Asgardian, you made a good point there and I agree. One of the good things about Asperclick is it's very tolerant. I did notice that in the past. These days that's rare to find. I'm not sure though why this point I made about football being popular is viewed as a dig. I was just interested to throw out some thoughts and just express something different.

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Asgardian
4 hours ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

Ah, Asgardian, you made a good point there and I agree. One of the good things about Asperclick is it's very tolerant. I did notice that in the past. These days that's rare to find. I'm not sure though why this point I made about football being popular is viewed as a dig. I was just interested to throw out some thoughts and just express something different.

Well it is coming across as a dig to me, and also to others as well it seems. You are right, this forum is tolerant and you should be allowed to voice your opinions here. I think the problem here is you come across as having an issue with the thread as much as football when in fact I believe your intention really was simply to criticise football. What I am saying is you probably could have worded it better but I don't believe you were making a personal attack.

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Dr-David-Banner

That's why I put the thread apart on a different section in case it seemed critical of the O.P. I ruled out "Debates" as "Debates" is dead zone land. So, to be honest, I was taking care to respect your position.
Now, I just mentioned "Debates" it somehow puts me on track to my mindset at the time. No harm in football, rugby or cycling threads. Why though is there zilch in "Debates" No history, no geopolitics, just a little current affairs?
The dig was aimed at football per se but I often take a swipe at Facebook too.

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Primeape

Maybe theres zilch in debates cause people try and avoid negativity which debates can bring a lot of 

If you feel the need to debate maybe you could search online for a debates forum?

Do we really need a current affairs thread too, everyday people see/hear about current affairs its shoved in our faces by radio, tv, and newspapers:mellow:

People may think im talking crap here but its just what i think 

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collectingrocks

It may be that with football comes along teams, scores, league tables, numbers etc which (as data) appeals to the autistic mind in a similar manner to timetables, train/bus numbers, telephone directories etc. 

Also that most sports in general have rules and structure which also appeals 

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Asgardian
58 minutes ago, collectingrocks said:

It may be that with football comes along teams, scores, league tables, numbers etc which (as data) appeals to the autistic mind in a similar manner to timetables, train/bus numbers, telephone directories etc. 

Also that most sports in general have rules and structure which also appeals 

Absolutely right, that has always been the appeal to me.

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Dr-David-Banner

To be honest, it goes way beyond football. I'm aware you can have AS and still be into football. I figure Mike Katz has AS and he was a pro American football player before he got into bodybuilding (after injury in football).
I only used football as an example because it was the most popular thread (or close to Willow's one on AS diagnosis).
You could say in truth I'm drifting from the whoile AS scenario and find myself more and more distancing myself from it. Still, sometimes people will phone me with their mental health related problems but I lack the patience and may even have offended a friend the other day for being a bit blunt.
Over the last few months the way I view the AS situation is less optimistic. Somehow it seemed to show signs of promise and alternatives about 10 years ago but something fizzled out. It's gotten too "normal" and less weird or radical. I should stress though my distancing from AS has nothing to do with the forum or any single thread. It's more to do with personal experiences and what I've pondered for some time. .

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Dr-David-Banner

There's a known story where George Harrison went to San Francisco around 1968 to meet the Flower People. At the time George had popped an LSD tab and was so spaced out he hardly knew where he was at. Well, just months before the San Francisco hippy scene was vibrant and alive. People with flowers in their hair and Jefferson Airplane doing gigs. Yet when George got there somehow the Flower scene had fizzled out. George showed the fans a few guitar chords but somehow the scene was now harder into drugs and less "flowery". After that George just gave up LSD, got into Krishna and explored Eastern religion.

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Sanctuary

I think there is potential for an interesting discussion on whether individuals with AS are more or less likely to be interested in sport or how successful they are in playing different sports. It may be that Aspies may be drawn more to individual rather than team sports because the social aspects are less demanding but clearly many of them do like team sports such as football. We all have different interests and while we may be sometimes surprised at why people like certain things I don't feel we should be critical of their choices.

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Gone away

Footballs is a national sport and is incredibly popular pulling alot of people together.
Overall its probably more unusual not to follow, so hardly surprising its a popular subject.
Personally, I lost interest as a child after Georgie Best had shown his best and never been able to watch a match since. I think I only watched it due to peer pressure, but did find George Best a truly hypnotic player

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Dr-David-Banner

"Footballs is a national sport and is incredibly popular pulling alot of people together."

That's my point. It's a popular activity that appeals to the masses, the group, the collective. Years ago, as you said it was more a sport whereas today it's practically a religion. The footballers appear to me overpaid (ridiculously so) and pampered. They're known to party and snort cocaine in plush nightclubs and, of course, society gave them a sense of essence of success. Kids are taught that this is the ideal in a society that frankly lacks art, science or culture. As I said, though, it's not just football. You could say the same about rap and the current music scene. Rap was once a reasonably pleasant music genre but it was gradually swallowed up by limited musicians out to make a quick buck. Where I live it's all you hear. Never progressive, jazz or classical.
The more this cult of the masses phenomenon gathers momentum, the more rebellious and isolated from it I get. Probably my gut negative reaction to football derives from the way it was used to judge a kid's value at school. It was the same in the USA. Did you ever see the scene in the 1980's Karate Kid movie where Daniel Larusso is made to look an idiot in the school football game? The cheerleaders are all over Johnny Lawrence (the most popular) and Daniel is sent off the pitch for retaliating. Then he meets the old Japanese Karate guru Miyagi who teaches him martial arts and spiritual values. I especially loved this movie as it juxtaposes Eastern Zen philosophy to hierarchy and perceived success.

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Dr-David-Banner

Next largest thread (I think) is just off 300 replies.
I do recall many many months ago when the Football thread was launched, I was kind of amazed to witness huge feedback. Of course it's important to stress I'm not wanting here to be critical in any way of the OP. Nobody knows how a thread will develop and should a thread prove to be popular, it's always encouraging for the originator. The reason I sort of bit the bullet and commented was the site had gotten very quiet. Also, even the football thread itself had finally slowed down..
I should stress close to 2000 comments is an incredible figure. Had there been one or two one thousanders knocking about, then my commentary post would have made no sense.
Also I just wanted to come out and say, "Nope, I don't like football at all." Yet this is something I always make clear in real life.
Then there's the psychology aspect. Not only do I study AS but I took to studying NT's as well. Lately this includes facial expression and facial communication.
Someone mentioned train spotting. I recall there was indeed such a thread and I think it did get a few comments. I am definitely interested in stereotypes. I'm starting to wonder if the stereotypes exist any more. For example, the stereotype AS is maybe a Peter Parker type, wears glasses, poor at sports, no girlfriend, maybe does chemistry or trig and isn't popular.
Here is a big factor I feel I hit on: Social Media. Has this transformed and morphed Asperger Syndrome? Pre Social Media aspies had no social media at all so were forced to either try and socialise or take up some weird interest (like origami or ancient languages). Yet post social media aspies can now socialise online. Moreover as we all crave socialisation, many aspies practically live on social media. It makes sense this is a huge pull for those who struggle with non verbal communication.
Point - I am more led to believe IT has transformed AS. I think pre social media aspies connected and related differently to the environment. Given there was no net to fall back on, spectrum people were more cut off and likely communicated less.
This theory may be wrong but one positive is Temple Grandin has herself noted connections between AS and the arrival of social media.
As to NT's it seems clear social media has changed them too.

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Sanctuary
20 hours ago, Dr-David-Banner said:

"Footballs is a national sport and is incredibly popular pulling alot of people together."

That's my point. It's a popular activity that appeals to the masses, the group, the collective. Years ago, as you said it was more a sport whereas today it's practically a religion. The footballers appear to me overpaid (ridiculously so) and pampered. They're known to party and snort cocaine in plush nightclubs and, of course, society gave them a sense of essence of success. Kids are taught that this is the ideal in a society that frankly lacks art, science or culture. As I said, though, it's not just football. You could say the same about rap and the current music scene. Rap was once a reasonably pleasant music genre but it was gradually swallowed up by limited musicians out to make a quick buck. Where I live it's all you hear. Never progressive, jazz or classical.
The more this cult of the masses phenomenon gathers momentum, the more rebellious and isolated from it I get. Probably my gut negative reaction to football derives from the way it was used to judge a kid's value at school. It was the same in the USA. Did you ever see the scene in the 1980's Karate Kid movie where Daniel Larusso is made to look an idiot in the school football game? The cheerleaders are all over Johnny Lawrence (the most popular) and Daniel is sent off the pitch for retaliating. Then he meets the old Japanese Karate guru Miyagi who teaches him martial arts and spiritual values. I especially loved this movie as it juxtaposes Eastern Zen philosophy to hierarchy and perceived success.
 

I think the fact that football is a very popular activity which "appeals to the masses" doesn't make it somehow of lower value. Some things that are popular may appeal to the lowest common denominator but others are popular because they are genuinely good and deservedly resonate with many people. The Beatles were remarkably popular  - does their mass appeal mean they should be avoided in order to not be "one of the crowd"? Popularity and quality are not inversely related. It's important to follow the things we like without consideration of whether they are popular / unpopular or critically respected / denigrated. Some people with AS are drawn to more unusual interests and there's nothing wrong with that but there's equally nothing wrong with them following more popular activities.

You make a good point about how football could / can be used to judge children at schools. It's certainly true that many children have miserable experiences of being the last to be selected for football or other sports, or of their lack of sporting ability being mocked. That may turn some of these children off but many of them do still enjoy sport. Mostly they still enjoy watching it but some find some other way to play the game, e.g. with their friends, or return to team sports as an adult in a more mature and supportive environment. Children realise that the problem is not in the sport - which may be very enjoyable - but in the behaviour and attitudes of other children.

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RiRi

@Dr-David-Banner Where are you getting your information from? Are you only looking at the "Discussion" forum to come to the conclusion that the Football thread is the most popular? Are you saying it's the most popular from that particular forum or are you saying from the entire forum? I'm only asking because I want to know how you came about your conclusion. I tried manually seeing the replies of threads, to try to see how you can about that, but I'm too lazy to do that and I might end up getting the wrong results, so I'm asking. I'm sorry if it sounds like a ridiculous question/unimportant question, but I'm only curious to know, so to me it's not ridiculous/unimportant. 

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Dr-David-Banner

You made a great point about The Beatles. There was something about Beatle popularity that deeply troubled John Lennon. I think John realised finally that a huge majority of Beatle fans were principally fans more due to peer pressure. He stated that only a tiny minority really understood their music. This is totally true. Brian Epstein alone understood they had to wear suits and have an image or the music would never take off. And John hated all the screaming and some of the less sophisticated songs.
If NT fans really were resonating with The Beatles, why did they drop off in the seventies? Were The Stones a harder fashion statement. Why do bands come and go as a fashion? I mean, I listen to music that I like - period. It doesn't matter to me what others follow.
When there was an openess around 1967 to different music, John was free to experiment and do weird tracks like Day In The Life. Yet the band never would have made it if Sgt Pepper had been their sound in 1962. To get popular I figure they had to bang out boy loves girl tracks so the average working man could relate.
As a frustrated musician, I often get puzzled by the fact McCartney had written the odd Sgt Pepper track aged about 19. Nobody was in awe. Back then he was just a working class music tinkerer, hugely talented but with no platform to be discovered. Ringo said before the suits and ties, the audience used to take the piss in seedy clubs where they played.

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Sanctuary

it's certainly true that being very popular gives an artist more room to experiment and be creative. Their audience will then take more seriously their experimental efforts. You're right that the Beatles would probably have made little impression had they been making Pepper-like tracks in the early 1960s. It's very difficult to move from being fringe and avant-garde to hugely popular although some acts do become more mainstream in order to gain a wider audience. Often though the quality still shows through with these performers. Being very popular though doesn't mean that artists can do whatever they like and remain popular. Some of them rapidly lose their audience, not because they've been too high-brow but because their efforts at innovation are not very good. The Beatles managed to be innovative and retain mass popularity. They were also astute to keep some of their more "challenging" works on their albums rather than release them as singles where they would be exposed to a much wider public.

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Dr-David-Banner

" I'm sorry if it sounds like a ridiculous question/unimportant question, but I'm only curious to know, so to me it's not ridiculous/unimportant. "

It looks as if the football thread was possibly the biggest thread on the forum. So, my post was about asking how come? I wasn't deliberately trying to state football is sort of out of harmony with autism. It was more a case of how come it effectively eclipsed so many other threads. For example, say you had football with 2000 comments but also a few others with, say, 800 or so, there would be a certain balance. Given many threads tend to hover around 30 odd responses, I just did this post and took a chance. Clearly, it sort of came across as me being a bit snobby over football. Maybe it was a mistake on my part. Or maybe sometimes it's OK to just add a bit of controversy - not sure.
Pretty much all posters felt I was being a bit picky. Put very simply I was viewing football as both popular and mainstream and wondering why we have hardly any minority threads such as yoga, bonsai, dancing or tropical fish.
Given the site was getting very quiet I figured I had nothing to lose in airing my thoughts. I didn't expect much impact at the time.

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