I watched the world final snooker championship last night, until nearly 1am. Good job to John Higgins for hoisting the trophy a second time, and also to Mark Selby, who made the match one worth watching.

I enjoy watching snooker, and will say that Ronnie O’Sullivan is my favourite player, altho he can be maddingly frustrating to watch at times. He is a genus, but I fear his time may have passed him by. Same for Stephen Hendry, altho he can’t seem to take the hint. Anyway, I like snooker, but it’s not the kind of thing you can really think about too much, or it stops making sense. Snooker, like nearly all sports, consists mainly of people paid a lot of money to do very simple tasks (yes, I know it takes a lot of skill, but the point is, the idea is very simple). In this particular example, I just spent 18 days watching people on television hitting balls into holes with sticks. What kind of statement is that to base your life around?

“Hi; what do you do for a living?”

“I hit balls into holes with a stick”

“Ah, yes… pay well?

“Well, when I’m successful at it, yes”

Snooker players practice four to five hours a day or more to be the best at hitting balls into holes with sticks. Instead of living their lives with loved ones or friends, they’re usually down at some dingy club under a fluorescent light, hitting balls into holes with a stick. While doctors and firemen are saving lives and making differences in the world around them, other people are using up their alloted days, hitting balls into holes with a stick. It’s a funny world.

And other sports are just as odd; tossing balls through a hoop, fighting to move a ball over a goal line, hitting a ball back and forth over a net, running faster, jumping higher, picking up the heaviest thing, etc. You get the point. Not that any of us are doing much better, but you have to wonder at the possible conversations that could occur in the afterlife:

“Welcome to Heaven; What did you do with your life?”

“I hit balls into holes with a stick.”

“What? Your whole life?”

“No, I also… well, maybe I did!”

Snooker players don’t go to Hell tho, since it’s probably full of the rest of us who just watched instead.