Root, Root, Root for the Hope(less) Team
I really wish I could remember the exact day I became a sports fan. I doubt I was old enough to do much more than talk, eat and sleep (sounds a lot like my current lifestyle). I remember being so captivated by the feeling of winning, and how much better it felt than losing.
Props to my Dad for showing me how to play catch and for putting up a sweet basketball hoop up in my backyard. Props to eh Samuel Field Y for giving my Parents an overpriced and overrated place to send me after school everday, allowing me to play sports with other brats my age. And props to whoever invented sports, for giving me the greatest escape I could ask for from the burdens over everyday life…you know…talking, eating and sleeping.
Wait a second…why am I thanking anybody who has created something which for all the time and money and energy I spend investing myself in it- has never once rewarded me with the ultimate rush of victory?
I root for teams in every sport and we’ll include college for the sake of conversation, but when it comes down to it…there are only 3 teams in which I would really feel as though my life was complete should they ever win a championship. Im talking about the New York Liberty, Red Bulls and Long Island Ducks.
Ok so I probably care less about those 3 teams than I care about hearing about when Britney Spears will be able to visit her kids again (alright so I’m fixated on Britney, lets move on). But when it comes to sports, I pour my heart and soul into the New York Mets, New York Jets, and New York Knicks.
I am 20 years old. Since 1987 (20 years ago for those unable to keep track), would you like to guess how many combined championships those teams have won?
You guessed it. Zero.
Alright so I couldn’t even spell Mets until I was probably 2 (MAGNET STUDENT? I THINK SO!) and I couldn’t tell you what a baseball was until I was probably 5 or 6. So even since I was old enough to care about sports, I have never felt the rush of seeing my team celebrating as the last one standing.
I’ve seen some close calls, notably in 2000 when the Mets went to the World Series. I also had the Knicks in the NBA finals in 1999 and the Jets in the AFC Championship game the year before that. I have gotten close, but each time it seemed my team was on the cusp of achieving greatness, we would go on to take multiple steps backward in the years to follow.
To make matters worse, I somehow ended up with friends who experienced the exact opposite of me. Yankee fans? 4 championships before turning 14 years old. Boston natives? 3 Superbowls, 1 (working on 2) World Series ring(s) and now the Celtics are closer to winning a championship than the Knicks are (then again, so are the other 29 teams).
Every year begins and ends the same way. A fresh start filled with hope, and a disappointing end filled with regret. The Mets went out of their way to make this past season extra heart breaking by pulling off the most catastrophic regular season collapse in the history of baseball.
The Jets actually did me a favor by not making me wait until the last day of the season to break my heart. It only took them 7 weeks. Thanks boys.
And the Knicks? I guess theres some hope. Isiah Thomas seems like he’ll be spending the season on the court as opposed to in court. They keep saying the Eastern conference is up for grabs…but anybody who watches the Knicks knows we never box out…so thats unlikely.
So baring a miracle, and I get the feeling the Mets (1969,1986) and Jets (1969) already had theirs, I can look forward to another few months of hope, followed by a few more months of regret, only to do it all over again next year.
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