Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Which Team Has the Worst Fans?

Cub fans -- they are the worst fans in baseball. I heard that some sportswriter said this a few years ago and it caused a quite a stir at the time. His rationale was that Cub fans, rather than being "die hards" or "true blue", were demonstrating ignorance and stupidity with their continued loyalty to a perpetually losing team.

It sounds harsh, but think about it this way: What if there was a local restaurant that consistently had bad food and/or bad service. At first you might think the cook had a bad day, or maybe they hired an incompetent server. But, if they continued to provide bad food and bad service for a year, for two years, for ten years -- you'd stop going to that restaurant and wasting your money.

Now, if you had a friend who continued going to that restaurant -- and who also complained of the awful food and terrible service -- you might think it odd if they kept going back saying they were sure things would improve "next time". You wouldn't admire their stoicism, you wouldn't say "what a "die hard", "true blue" loyal fan of that restaurant you are". No, you'd say, "quit being an idiot and go find a decent restaurant!"

1 comment:

Sir Nicholai said...

Then I'd better never catch you voting Republican, because they've been a disappointment since Reagan. ;)

However, one might also consider that the value of a sports team is not necessarily winning a championship, but providing entertainment. The Cubs have not sucked and lost every game for 100 years, on the contrary, they've made it into the playoffs several times recently (sorry, I'm not actually a big sports fan, so I don't follow them very closely)
So they are providing the service or having games enjoyable to watch, and providing a team enjoyable to cheer.

Or, one could look at it as less a service, for one does not cheer services such as restaurants. Rather, cheering a sports team seems something more akin to patriotism or loyalty to family. I do not mean to desecrate either of those two much higher ideals by comparing them to loyalty to a sports team, but it seems to me that people cheer for a sports team not because it is good necessarily, but because it is theirs. There are some people who cheer for whomever has the strongest team each year, but there are other who cheer for sports teams because it gives them (subconciously) a sense of identity, belonging, and being on a side. Man by nature is a social animal, and seeks a pack or tribe to belong to.

Also, if you're going to start cheering for teams based on how well they do, why do you cheer for the White Sox rather than the Yankees? Statistically speaking the Yankees have done a better job of providing "service" to their fans.

In the meantime, I shall continue to cheer for the Cubs, as my father does, and his father, and my father's father's father before him. However, one of the grandfathers loves the bears, and the other died a true blue packers fan. This does present a difficulty. ;)



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