Note: This is NOT a football post. It starts out that way, but if you’re not a football person, keep reading.
So, Peyton Manning is finally going to the Super Bowl. I’m glad for him. Being a second son, I’ve always felt more of a connection with his younger brother Eli. However, it’s hard not to let a little joy slip into your heart for a man who finally conquered demons he had been fighting for so many years.
One football note: that was an incredible game. Watching Brady and Manning try to match each other was like watching Steve Vai and Joe Satriani cutting heads. They are both at the top of their game, and one can’t help but admire their mastery of the complexities of their position. As much as I love Vince Young, he’s got a long way to go to get to the level of those two.
But you know what? I don’t like Peyton Manning. Never have. I know, I know, in yesterday’s sermon post I talked all about loving everybody, but loving and liking are two different things. Let’s just say I have no Philia love for Mr. Manning, yet I still love him in an agape way.
Here’s the weird thing: I don’t know why. In fact, besides some people for obvious reasons, I can’t really quantify why I like or dislike certain people. All I can tell you is that it is visceral. It is not always immediate (I once liked Rosie O’Donnell, now I dislike her with a passion), and whatever my formula is for like/dislike, it’s not set in stone. For instance, I liked Jevon Kearse till he bolted for the Eagles. Yet, I have never stopped liking Kevin Carter.
Let me see if I can articulate this. I think that somewhere in my brain, when I pull up the “file” on a person, I run that file through a “routine” that follows a specific flow chart. Something like this:
Default: Like. Abrasive? If Yes, continue. If No, goto [sarcastic].
Funny Accent? If yes, goto [southern or northern]. If no, continue.
Sarcastic? If yes return “dislike” else return “like”.
That’s not perfect, there are so many factors, and the order is not always the same. But, I do it with everybody, and something tells me that’s normal. I think that’s how we end up with the whole “good minority/bad minority” dichotomy. Denzel Washington: like. Pacman Jones: dislike. Henry Cho: like. Margaret Cho: dislike. Ellen Degeneres: like. Rosie O’Donnell: dislike.
Can you tell that abrasiveness seems to put people into my dislike category?
Then there’s the whole “I like him when he’s on my team” thing. We ALL do this, I believe. Would I dislike Hillary Clinton if she were a Republican? That’s hard to say. She has a hard time masking a certain abrasiveness that lies just below the surface of her personality. Yet, I always liked Bob Dornan for that very reason. So yeah, I probably would. I’m not saying it’s right, I’m just trying to be honest.
Would I like Peyton Manning if he were a Titan? Probably. I think that overrides almost any other factor (except for Pacman Jones – who I root for but feel sorry for at the same time) . If he were a Colt now but had started his career with the Titans, I’d still cheer for him, just like Steve McNair.
Anyway, I guess what I’m saying is that I know that somewhere in my psyche I do this flowcharted like/dislike routine, and in some ways I don’t understand it. Am I the only one? Does anybody else do this?