Through the Prism

After passing through the prism, each refraction contains some pure essence of the light, but only an incomplete part. We will always experience some aspect of reality, of the Truth, but only from our perspectives as they are colored by who and where we are. Others will know a different color and none will see the whole, complete light. These are my musings from my particular refraction.

3.21.2013

What Floats Your Boat: Steady or Flashy?

It’s March Madness time, so I am once again engaging in my long-time, sporadic practice of listening to sports talk radio.  Kentucky (UK) was the national champion last year, but this year they didn’t even qualify for the championship tournament and then lost in the first round of the consolation tournament.  The local radio stations were comparing this to Kansas' (KU's) run of 26 straight years qualifying for the tournament.  So KU has more consistently been a top team, but UK has won three national titles in the last 17 years to KU’s one.

It reminded me of a debate I frequently hear on those radio shows, most often about football.  It goes something along the lines of: Would you rather be really good for ten years without winning a championship or be really bad for nine years with one title in the mix that tenth year?  Is being the absolute best just once worth the price of being bad before and after?  Though, to be fair, I should have included “your team” in those questions in place of “you,” since we’re considering this from the perspective of a fan.

Based on what I’ve heard, I’m in the minority with this opinion, but here’s my take: I’d rather see my team be consistently competitive, even if it means we never win a championship/title/Super Bowl/etc even once.

Two reasons. First, it is my team we’re talking about and not me.  Many fans take particular pride in associating with a championship team, as though it is a personal reflection on them--their talent, work ethic, and worth--for being geographically or otherwise aligned with that team.  If their team is the best, then so are they.  I don’t feel that way.  It sure is fun to root for the best and winning it all creates some giddy feelings and awesome memories, but I’ve done nothing personally to contribute to that championship and it says nothing about me at all (other than that I’m happy).  It's not a point of pride for me.

Second, and much more importantly, unless I am a participant, I view sports as entertainment.  Bad teams aren’t nearly as much fun to root for and have significantly less entertainment value.  In addition to the depressing feeling of constantly losing, their seasons are much shorter—both literally, in that they don’t get to be part of post-season tournaments, play-offs, and the like, and emotionally, in that as fans we start checking out once post-season hopes are dashed in the middle of the regular season.  If I'm in it for the entertainment, then I get much more overall entertainment value out of a consistently good team than one that isn't, making championships beside the point.

So I’d rather have the constant, dependable, regular excitement of watching an entertaining team that is always competitive than a have a huge high surrounded by not much fun at all.

What say you?

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