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Fantasy Fever

I joined a fantasy football league a few years back. Before that, I knew nothing about this craze except that my oldest man boy watched the NFL with a computer nearby, keeping track of players. The more it grew, the more curious I became. I felt left out of what seemed to be a whole lot of fun. I like football. I like fun. Why couldn't I participate in fantasy football? In theory, it sounded like a great idea. The only problem was my knowledge was about as useful as a trap door in a canoe.

I began asking the fanatics to share the cliff notes on this phenomenon. I'd always loved the Steelers growing up, then married into The Who Dat Nation, so pro football wasn't as foreign to me as it was to some in the South. There are folks in these parts that only watch college ball, I kid you not! After gaining just enough of an education to fuel my desire, I wanted in. Hub, our friend Chris and I decided to find some naive friends and acquaintances to join us. It was a motley crew from all walks of life. There were a couple who had dabbled in the FF world, but we were pretty much rookies. The blind leading the blind. This was going to be good.

We formed our league two days after the season started with the help of my man boy. Better late than never. We named it League Laissez Faire, which means to let things take their own course. That seemed appropriate because we had absolutely no clue what we were doing. Drafting our teams required no research, we just logged in and randomly picked players names that we recognized. During the season, we gathered important tidbits of information. For instance, players must be switched out on their bye weeks or you lose points. I know you fantasy pros are laughing at that simple blunder, but we were as green as the spring grass. We knew nothing about trading, so we didn't. We laughed at ourselves a lot, because some of our mistakes were hilarious. Friendships began to grow as we texted on our league thread and message board. We figured it out together and had a blast.

Hub and I are hosting our draft day this weekend. We preplan now. We bring food. We do research. Members come with spreadsheets and printouts. Are we experts? No way! But we're no longer rookies, and our friendship has grown even more through our text thread. During football season, I can wake up to 183 messages, most having absolutely nothing to do with football. I have laughed until I cried and nearly peed in my pants as I caught up on the league banter. We're now close friends. Some members have come and gone through the years, but most have remained compadres. We've gone through pure joy and intense pain together. We've had members move across the country. We've met each other's kids and families. We've experienced break ups and make ups. We've supported one another in our professional or charitable endeavors. We've traveled together. We've watched many games together. We've played practical jokes on each other. We've celebrated holidays together. We're more than simply league members. We're a family. I treasure the Laissez Faire crew I've gained through fantasy football. Who knew this random venture would lead to lifelong friends?

Below are some pics of League Laissez Faire.

I love them so.

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