I gave up playing organized sports about 15 years ago when I still sported a beer-belly-less figure.
Besides, I drifted out to centerfield to catch a pop up and got plowed over by a raging bull. The collision snapped my left ankle.
Growing up, my boyhood dreams of replacing Bill Russell at shortstop for the Los Angeles Dodgers ended when I tried out as a walk-on at the University of Arizona.
I comfort myself knowing they won the national championship the year before in 1986. And, heck, none of the other walk-ons made the team either for the legendary Jerry Kindall, who led the Wildcats to three College World Series titles.
Today, I usually take a long walk for exercise when work fails to sap all my energy, I lack any after-work errands, have to cook dinner, it’s too hot or I just don’t feel like it.
What fuels my need for sports and that feeling of adrenaline rushing through my veins?
For the past 10 years, I’ve played Fantasy football. Fun fact: Wilfred Winkenbach, one of the owners of the Oakland Raiders, created the game in 1962 in a Manhatten hotel room with two other fellas.
Today, about 19 million other people compete online in thousands of leagues across the USA.
I now follow the NFL religiously on my Chromebook from my La-Z-Boy. Note to self: drop Indianapolis Colts quarterback Andrew Luck from my draft cheat sheet.
Playing this and rooting for the rattle snake-bitten Arizona Wildcats football team pretty much wastes my time now through December.
As soon as I find a softball team for old fat guys who guzzle beers, I tell myself I’ll get back on the field.
However, I promise to resist the strong urge to join a pickup game at the Y with the other old farts on the basketball court and to pretend being Steph Curry. I’ve come to learn it can make walking the next day or two a major challenge.
You never know at 50 when your body might betray you. These days, I may be reaching for a fork and end up on the disabled list for a week with a pulled hamstring.
So for now, I’ll stick to playing Fantasy football. The only thing I bruise in that competition is my ego.
Duwayne Escobedo covers Santa Rosa County for the Daily News. You can contact him at 850-315-4489 in Fort Walton Beach, on his cell phone at 850-255-1484 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org