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The First Ones Now Will Later Be Last

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I’m not exactly a football person, but I got a little caught up tonight. Even though I’m from New England, I wanted the Atlanta team because they were the underdogs. But the moment they started shellacking the Patriots and they became the underdogs, I wanted The Patriots to win. I will always root for the underdog.

A few years ago, I was having with lunch with a publisher when he made the observation that he liked winners and I liked losers. I think it’s more that I don’t trust winners. What is a winner anyway? It is true that I’ve taken in my share of broken birds, but I never saw them as losers. They were always beautiful to me.

Who do you root for?

8 Responses

  1. Interesting position on picking a team to root for, b/c like you, I’m not a big football fan, and am “forced” to watch it b/c hubby is – although his team let him down – once again. (Vikings)

    I was rooting for the Patriots (I don’t get all the hype about Tom Brady and his looks) because it would be historic. My husband was rooting for the Falcons – for the reasons you stated exactly. Those were his words, “they’re the underdog.” I didn’t stay up – right after Gaga exited (what a show!) I went to bed. I thought it was a washout. The score was 28 to 3 for Pete’s sake. Besides, I wanted to finish reading the book I felt was taking me a million years to read. (Work Like Any Other, Virginia Reeves)

    Imagine my surprise this morning. So, in this case I was rooting for a history making event. In other cases, it would have been the underdog.

  2. I’ve given up on rooting (hard) for any team or individual. There’s winners, losers and though I pick one, because that’s what we are supposed to do, I am seldom gratified by a win or devastated by a loss. Until last November.

    This WAS one of the best Super Bowl games ever and for that, because I am from CT, I am grateful for the second half comeback.

    Oh wait, I do root for Connecticut’s UCONN Women’s Huskies Basketball. 97 straight wins. Yup, they are the best, Best, BEST at what they do. I guess I do still root for a team. Ah… the enlightenment of self-discovery. All is not lost.

    • I like your thoughts on UCONN women’s basketball and rooting for the best to be the best. I loved the Rio Olympics, because I got to unabashedly root for Simone Biles… rooting not for her to “win,” but to be perfect, to do things that humans simply shouldn’t be able to do. There are a lot of things that are unfortunately configured as competitions, when what I really want to do is watch for those moments when mortals become gods. The whole idea of winning cheapens what could be transcendent. James Brown didn’t “win” music. Joan Didion didn’t “win” writing. They just showed us greatness.

  3. Certainly not the Patriots, although they are a damn good team. Bastards.
    I tend to root for the logical and sensible. It’s boring, I know.
    Then again, I’ll root for the fantastical or anarchistic.
    (Just watched “Captain Fantastic” on Netflix the other night — I was rooting for the kids).
    And I’m rooting like hell for — and joining in — those opposed to Trump. Ethical and Constitutional irregularities aside, the man is just a dick.
    ps — two things I never thought I’d say: I liked Lady GaGa last night and I liked the enthusiasm of Giselle Bundchen.

  4. I don’t care about football, but watch the SB because of the commercials. All that creative power poured (for better and worse) into thirty seconds.

    But last night was like a complete distillation of the election and its subsequent malaise. The commercials were mostly boring, earnest and oppositional, making their social case to the reasonable that they would not abandon us. I appreciated them, but they were all weary in their hope.

    And the game an analog as well, the unexpected but inevitable triumph of the smug prince and his supermodel girlfriend (for whom he dumped another pregnant actress), his on- and off-field cheating happily ignored by his loyal tribe.

    Ick.

    I root for the flawed and noble. I root for the ones who shouldn’t have made it but somehow did, and are still a little surprised by their own success.

    • Herb, couldn’t have better described Brady. It’s amazing the personal flaws that sports fans overlook when it comes to their “heros”

  5. The game’s the thing. The close game is always the more interesting.

  6. As far as football and most sports, my late father nailed it when he said (with affection) that I didn’t know whether the ball was pumped or stuffed.

    I always, always root for the underdogs in life. Not because they are losers but because–even if the odds are stacked against them–they haven’t given up at becoming winners.

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