Wednesday, March 14, 2007

The City Sports Outrage

A few months back, as we were getting back into the football groove I thought it would be wise to have a football of my own in DC. I went to the City Sports near my office and got a solid wilson pro replica game ball.
A few weeks ago while playing the ball began deflating at a surprising rate. Upon re-pumping it held its air for just fifteen minutes.
This issue cuts right to the core of what it means to be a football. Pretty much all they do is hold air. They are designed to hold it. If you can grip it in a variety of conditions, that's gravy. The ball didn't have a puncture nor did it have and gash or cut. It just didn't do it's job. At some point all footballs pass their prime, but this one was only a few weeks old. I was not going to accept this outrage. Something had to be done.

Today, seething with the sting of this injustice, I went back to the store, sad deflated football in hand. The conversation went roughly like this:

ZT: I'd like to make a product exchange.
Cashier: What's the problem? [it clearly wasn't obvious enough from the ball]
ZT: This ball won't hold air for more than 15 minutes, I bought it here, and I am back to exchange it for one that will.
C: [looks at me incredulously]
ZT: I have played football most weeks since I was 7 and have never seen a ball fail to hold air after even close to this amount of time.
C: Is it still grippable.
ZT: Sure, but the point of a ball is to hold air. It is at its essense a device for holding air.

That argument must have been sufficient because after hearing it he proceeded to check my purchase history and gave me some paperwork. I got a new version of the deflated ball which hopefully will fare better. Chutzpah emerged victorious. It is a proud day for consumer justice.


At 3/18/2007 , Blogger Chorus of Apes said...

you crack me up. : ) I'm sure the guy at the store had never really thought about the essence of a football before. I know I had not until I read this post. Question: If the essence of a football is to hold air, can any air-holding object stand in as a football? What happens when someone uses a deflated football as a pillow? Perhaps the football is actually socially constructed. : )


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