Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Suspiciously Superstitious

So, I was listening to the Bruins game last night, while keeping an eye on my Twitter feed. I was taken by how many references people were making to their superstitious actions during the game. Maybe they were wearing their lucky shirt, or lucky hat. Maybe they left the room because they were bad luck, or stayed in the room because they were good luck. Maybe they weren’t even sure what they needed to do, but whatever they were doing must be working. And, no, I wasn’t immune to that. After all, I wasn’t wearing my unlucky jersey.

But, I was reminded of some of the superstitious acts that people go through for the Red Sox. They were especially prevalent before the 2004 championship as everyone had a new method to “break the curse.” I think my favorite being the theory that dragging Babe Ruth’s old piano from the bottom of a lake would somehow do it. I remember reading somewhere that there were millions of Red Sox fans, and every one of them is sure that the Red Sox won in ’04 because of something they did.

Which brings me to the most interesting thing about baseball superstitions. We do so many of them, with absolutely no reason to believe they actually work.

I understand the reason we, as fans, do these things. We don’t have a bat or glove in our hands. We aren’t calling the plays. We’re just sitting back and watching. That’s exasperating. How can we be expected to just sit there and do nothing? We HAVE to do SOMETHING. So, we come up with things. Wear a lucky shirt. Or eat the same breakfast on game day.

But, like I said, we have no reason to be sure these things work. But we do them anyway. People wear rally caps to help the team score runs. I’ve even had people in the stands yell at others to put on a rally cap. But, don’t people put on rally caps every time a team gets behind? Do they rally every time? Didn’t think so. So, why do we continue to assume the caps are helping? Again, I’m not immune to this. I didn’t wear my unlucky Bruins jersey last night because the Bruins are 1-2 in games that I’ve worn it. So, they did win a game, despite me shoving the jersey in their face. (Although, they only won because they scored two goals right after I took the jersey off.)

But, we keep at it. The Sox scored a run when I was I the bathroom, so I’ll watch the rest of the game from the bathroom. Ignoring all the runs the Sox have scored in their history when I wasn’t in the bathroom. I’m going to talk about the potential no-hitter that the other team is throwing, because that will break it up. Ignoring the fact that no-hitters are rare because most of them are broken up at some point. I wasn’t talking about all of them. But, it makes us feel better. We’re not sitting idly by. We’re helping. We’re doing our part. No matter how crazy it is to think it’s helping.

What are some superstitious things you’ve done to help your team?

1 comment:

  1. I think my Moment of Clarity came when I got mad at Kim for throwing away a balled-up Kleenex. It seemed quite obvious to me that it needed to stay where it was in order for the Red Sox to keep winning, but all she saw was a balled-up Kleenex.

    Between that and the fact that I'm constantly knocking religious people for living in a fantasy land, I decided I needed to stop the hypocrisy and the insanity. Until then I thought of these superstitions as "my religion." So I'm not so "bad" anymore.

    But I do stand in the living room when we're one strike away from victory. (One out away vs. Yanks.) And if Kim's sitting on the couch with her feet up, I remind her to at least make contact with the floor with a minimum of one foot. Other than that I'm totally normal!


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