Explain xkcd: It's 'cause you're dumb.
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Title text: My hobby: Pretending to miss the sarcasm when people show off their lack of interest in football by talking about 'sportsball' and acting excited to find someone else who's interested, then acting confused when they try to clarify.
In this comic, Cueball (i.e. Randall) explains that even though he does not care about sports and is tempted to be scornful about others' obsession with it, he understands that people feel vulnerable about stuff they care about. And he will for sure be fed up with all the talk about the Super Bowl discussions and arguments over the coming weeks. However, since other people tolerate his interest in odd things like meteorology and the Philae lander (see 1324: Weather and 1446: Landing), he recognizes that he should show the same consideration to them. (Technically this is implicitly an invocation of Immanuel Kant's categorical imperative, which, although it makes no reference to the Super Bowl, specifies the general maxim Cueball is following here).
In the last frame, he tells us that instead of celebrating the sports event on Sunday, he will be celebrating friendship (through listening to his friends) and snacking (through eating snacks). This suggests that the value of friendship trumps the discomfort of watching human activities that seem uninteresting to him - and that the snacks also help ameliorate his discomfort.
The title text continues the "my hobby" trope: here, Cueball creates discomfort for people who scornfully refer to for instance football, basketball and/or baseball as "sportsball" by calling their bluff and pretending to be interested in this imaginary sport. A person who does not even know that sportsball is imaginary, or who assumes they are talking about the Nintendo game by that name, would clearly be even more uninterested in sport than someone who just scorns sport in general. Feigning interest in this imaginary sport exposes their snobbishness.
In a distant past, Cueball spent his time differently during the 60: Super Bowl. See also 1107: Sports Cheat Sheet.
This comic shares a title with comic #60, published February 6, 2006. This appears to be only the second time that two xkcd comics have borne the same name: Comic #786, published August 30, 2010, and comic #1071, published June 20, 2012, both bore the title "Exoplanets."
- [Cueball standing.]
- Cueball: I don't know much about sports, which can be culturally isolating, so it's tempting to get vocal and defensive about not following them.
- Cueball: Caring about something makes people vulnerable, so not caring gives you power.
- [Pictures of a weather map and Philae spacecraft in the background.]
- But I know things I'm into don't always sound interesting to 100% of the people around me, and it means a lot when they sometimes try to listen anyway - and maybe even find themselves sharing some of my excitement!
- [Cueball pointing to self.]
- Cueball: So while everyone is going on about the Super Bowl on Sunday, let me tell you what I'll be doing:
- [Cueball standing again.]
- Cueball: Listening!
- Cueball: Hooray for friendship!
- Cueball: Also, eating snacks.
- Cueball: Hooray for snacks!
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