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Thursday, October 21, 2004


loving misery

i love it when yankee fans get embarrassed, and here is a classic: the new york times on sunday condescendingly published an overview of the psychology of losing, telling red sox fans that they prefer their perpetual misery. someone may want to tell the editors: looks like that was just a bit premature!

but the whole piece resonates with any cub fan -- the love of futility has often been a topic in the sixth and seventh innings, after a few old styles. many cub fans, we speculate, would abandon the team if the cubs ever really won it. futility is what makes the cubs unique now. would they be appealing if they suddenly no longer embodied each of us in our stoic struggles against the ironic world?

"No one can accuse you of being a lightweight fan," Dr. End said. "You've creatively changed the dimensions of comparison to include not just the outcome, the score, but measures of character."
seneca could have said it -- as a cub fan, you transcend the fiery tests of the superficial and the random to engage a higher plane of human morality. experiences like game six become affirmations of virtue; steve bartman becomes a sort of saint, an implement of the gods.

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