I am right now running up against the reality that I will be unable to watch the Villa game tomorrow.
That's not entirely, 100% true I suppose; I could wake up at 6:00, try to find a stream, wait for the stream to die, find another stream, and on it would go. Practically, I'd spend my Saturday morning in a daze, mashing away at the keyboard, furrowing my under-caffeinated brow in a vain attempt to make the buttons with letters turn into pretty pictures of claret and blue.
In practice, though, I know that I can either get up and watch the live-text or sleep in and watch the highlights and have a better experience. This is frustrating.
I am a subscriber to MLB.tv. Despite the fact that I can watch my beloved Mariners 162 days a year in high-definition, I pay $20 a month to have access to the other 12 games taking place on any given day, delivered to my laptop or streaming in high-def to my PS3 through Netflix. And I stupidly sometimes question the value of this investment. Cole Hamels taking the mound for the Phillies against Clayton Kershaw of the Dodgers? Yeah, what the hell. I'll watch that. If I see an exciting game on ESPN's ever-present score trawler, all I need to do is press three buttons and I'm there. If for some reason I can't watch the games as they happen, no problem; I can go back to them at any time and fast-forward through the boring bits. And I somehow manage to take this for granted.
Such a thing doesn't exist for EPL, at least so far as I am aware. If I am wrong, oh please God correct me, because I have never wished to be more wrong. I would gladly pay significantly more for EPL TV than I do for MLB.tv, but I have no such option. This is beyond dumb. In an era of unprecedented choice, my best option is to make the trek to a bar that may or may not choose to honor their published schedule, risking a wasted Saturday if they choose to go in a different direction.
I understand how spoiled by choice my generation has become, but rather than count my lucky stars I prefer to be a stereotypical American and bitch about it. In this case, though, I think I have a point.
Hey EPL; you're the most popular sports league in the world. Not only that, you have many fans in every imaginable time zone. If MLB can get it together to work their way through 30 regional TV contracts and offer out-of-market broadcasts to everyone in the world, why can't you? Are you in cahoots with the bad-English-pub lobby? Do you think our self-defeating fandom is cute? Or is it simply an issue of incompetence?
Frankly, I don't much care; the result is the same. All I know is that there's no good reason, given the models that currently exist, for me to not have access to your product. I'd greatly prefer not to have to steal it, but you're not giving me much of a choice. This is the very model of an economic inefficiency. I'm more than willing to give you my money, EPL. Why won't you just go ahead and take it?