25 February 2008

What's luck got to do with it? redux

I've gotten a few emails in response to my last post. One that really made me stop and think came from Charlie in Boston, who asked, basically, what the point of being a fan is if everything was controlled by luck rather than skill.

Well, Charlie, that's a really good question.

In my zeal to make my point, I perhaps overexaggerated a little bit; I'm sure that there's some element of skill involved in the process. However, even if there were no skill involved whatsoever, if everything were totally random, I think that it would still be good to be a fan. Why?

I view cheering for a team as a moral choice that is not contingent on facts. Case in point: I've cheered for the Tampa Bay Rays since their creation, despite abundant evidence that their management not only wasn't interested in putting a winning team on the field, but was actively hostile towards the team's fans.

Devotees of the Chicago Cubs, the Arizona Cardinals, and the New Jersey Institute of Technology Highlanders can all vouch for the loyalty they feel, regardless of results. If you cheer for a team, you do it regardless of how good, or bad, or mediocre that team or that team's administration is.

I hope this answers your question, Charlie.

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