Q: What is Fan Interference?
A: For the full and eloquent answer you really deserve, I refer you to our “About” page. In short, however, this blog is dedicated to the criticism of lazy and/or unhelpful sports analysis. When possible, we seek to enlighten after we criticize, but this does not always happen.
Q: How did Fan Interference get started?
A: Fan Interference began its now-storied history in the Towers I – 1303 suite at Vanderbilt University in Nashville. In February 2007, during our junior year, co-founder Keesup and I were inspired by blogs such as Fire Joe Morgan and thought “Hey! We could do that too!”
Initially, our tone was snarky, mean, and insolent. The writing was pretty bad too. But it was college, and we were having fun balancing the blog with all sorts of other college-y things. Within the last year, however, I decided that I wanted to make this space truly helpful, enlightening, and progressive. Hence the recent absence of profanity. I don’t miss it much anyway.
Q: Who are you, anyway?
My name is Kevin. I was born 23 years ago in Manhattan, New York. I went to kindergarten and elementary school on the Upper West Side, after which I attended high school on the Upper East Side. I dabbled in both the participation and management of sports in high school, ultimately finding myself much more interested in the latter. Ever since I was little, I enjoyed tracking and interpreting statistics, but the end of high school pushed me over the edge. The combination of hands-on statistical immersion and the release of Moneyball sealed my fate. I became a statistics junkie. And yes, I watched the games too.
For reasons I still cannot explain, I chose to attend Vanderbilt for college. I viscerally knew early on that I had made a bad choice. The culture of the school (and the region, to a lesser extent) started out as peculiar and progressed to off-putting, and I found myself to be pretty unhappy in my new surroundings. But, because I am stubborn, I told myself I was having an awesome time and that it was my own shortcomings that caused my unhappiness, not a bad fit or poor decision or anything like that. Eventually, I made friends with a handful of guys with whom I shared interests, and we remain extremely close to this day. I sputtered unenthusiastically and ignominiously through my schoolwork, ultimately deciding to become a history major after a supremely inadvisable bout with economics. I graduated on time in 2008 and returned to New York.
Since graduation, I’ve worked for three separate employers, and all involved work with kids. The first and second jobs required me to coach and otherwise work with kids in an athletic capacity. This is likely an uproarious thought to you if you know me personally. Nevertheless, I love sports, and I’ve learned that I love kids, but the intersection of the two just wasn’t right for me. I’m (a) not athletic enough to coach with any semblance of authority or self-assuredness and (b) not morally gratified by coaching itself. I have no doubt that coaching is a worthy profession. I just felt like I needed to do more.
The third job is the one I currently hold. I teach literacy (part-time) in Brooklyn to a gaggle of sixth graders from tough circumstances that are way behind in reading and writing. I continually wrestle with how to categorize myself – am I a real teacher or an overzealous substitute? – but I’ve learned that teaching is incredibly fun, often hilarious, and gratifying above all else. So, I spend my days juggling blogging, lesson planning, teaching, sports viewing, and a girlfriend that is more patient than she gives herself credit for.
Q: You’re a blogger, which means you’re pimply and pale and probably a weirdo. Am I right?
You be the judge.
Q: Why do you complain so much? What’s your deal?
A: A valid question. The “About” page might also help shed some light on this, but I’ll give it a go here too.
I watch a ton of sports, and have ever since I was very young. As a result, I find a lot of material just through the sheer volume of sports that I have taken in over my 22 years. This is not meant as a “my fanhood is bigger than your fanhood” kind of thing. I just have a lot in the mental rolodex, that’s all.
This prolonged and habitual sports binge has given me a sixth sense of sorts. Because of my longtime familiarity with players, teams, statistics, outcomes, and their contexts, I have developed the “that doesn’t sound right” or “I bet he didn’t look that up” sense. When I hear something iffy – a characterization of a player’s skill, a regurgitated sports myth, a context-free statistic – I look it up and see if the assessment is true. If it isn’t, I post about it. If it is, I grudgingly mutter “well played” to my opponent and go on with my life. What you might call complaining, I call fact-checking.
I am also a generally cranky person from a generally cranky family. I’ve learned to accept it.
Q: What are all these random letters you keep using ? Are you trying to alienate your readers?
A: For explanations of the statistics used on this blog, check out the Statistics page.
Q: What are your teams?
A: As a native New Yorker, the only acceptable answer to this question is the Yankees, Knicks and Giants. I firmly believe that if you root for a team that ends in “-ets,” you are misguided. If you root for all three, you are beyond salvation.
Q: How do I contact Fan Interference?
A: The obvious way would be to leave a comment after the relevant post. If you’d like to contact me directly – and I would absolutely welcome that – you can e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will only ignore your e-mail if you demonstrate an inability to distinguish between it’s/its, here/hear, there/their/they’re, or your/you’re. Other than that, I welcome your thoughts.