America seems to be in love with both fantasy and reality at the same time. We just cannot seem to get enough of each of them – as different as they may be. As much as our enthusiasm for one seems too abundant, we just as vigorously seek out the other. Yet there may be one aspect of life that combines them both and that may explain its popularity especially this time of year.

It is difficult to miss our love for the fantasy life. Look first at movies that sell out the theaters. The Harry Potter movies (and the many books on his adventures), the superhero movies too numerous to mention, and the endless sci-fi flicks all capture the spirit of fantasy lifef. The video games which fascinate Americans of all ages, genders and race take away from reality into a fantasy life of control and empowerment.

And why wouldn’t we want to escape from reality? Life is full of economic chaos, unemployment, broken promises and relationships of all kinds that crush and disappoint. Yet, we seek reality. We all watch news releases that bring reality home to us. We have seen the development of many so-called reality shows. Like it or not we emerce ourselves in reality and escape into fantasy.

Sports provide both. We watch the reality of preseason and fantasize about what kind of season our favorite team may have. We look at draft choices and athletes recovering from injuries and surgery and fantasize about what the season may bring. Then the season brings us the reality of competition. How many times have the seasons and lack of success not lived up to the preseason hype? Look no further than Washington teams to see the reality of this.

Fantasy football seems to be one area that unites both the fantasy world and reality. Right now fantasy leagues and participants are active in drafting their teams. These choices are based on the fantasy of what these players will be capable of this football season. Yet the outcomes, the week-by-week statistics generated by their play will determine the outcome of these fantasy teams. The teams don’t exist in reality but the statistics generated by the players are from the most part not debatable. So for at least the next six months, we all can merge fantasy and reality into one blissful, beerful, snackful existence and maybe even help the economy a little as well.

Stay thirsty my friends. We need both a taste of reality and fantasy. It’s as natural as beer and wings.