Posted on December 10th, 2008 at 10:26 am by Cheesesteak Hoagie
Extremely long-time readers might recall some references to the wholly excellent A Season With Verona by Tim Parks. It’s the journal of an English ex-pat novelist spending a season following a mid-table (which is generous) Italian soccer team.
It’s my favorite sports book, in that I think it does both a great job of probing what motivates us to be fans as well as explores the very real differences between the experiences of the fans and the actual folks playing the games. Definitely worth reading (even if you don’t care about soccer), makes a great gift, etc.
Anyway, one of my favorite passages is Parks’ description of a banner hung by fans in the stadium early in the season that reads “Facci sognare,” or “Make us dream,” which pretty much sums up this whole experience of being a fan. That is, we know our team only has a 1/32 chance of winning the Super Bowl (if that), but we don’t really care. What we want to do is buy into the dream of winning, and enjoy that dream as long as we can, even if we end up disappointed.
Well, that’s where we are now. After some serious mid-November crapulence, the Eagles are back in the hunt. We’re doing a great job of convincing ourselves that this maddeningly inconsistent team will suddenly find its form, win its final three games (including two against division opponents to whom the Eagles have already lost, as if a five-game winning streak is no big deal, especially for said maddeningly inconsistent team), and sneak into the playoffs.
I don’t mean to go too Negadelphian on this, as I’m pretty bought in myself. The odds of all this happening are about 35 percent. The bigger point is that we have reason to dream (at least until they lose). And none of us can be disappointed by that (it sure beats arguing about Donovan McNabb’s future).
- The illusion of competence and the price of optimism
- Wow. It’s getting pretty meta in here. We’d better embrace soon!
- I think there are plenty of footballs (also, Greg Lewis can have a seat)
- Facci Sognare!
- Monday Eagles Hangover: the cure for hangovers is obviously EAGLES AWESOMENESS