The Opossum-Palooza

It's okay. We don't know what the name means either.

9.27.2006

Schadenfreude!

There are few things in sports more enjoyable than watching your team play the spoiler, torpedoing the playoff aspirations of a team far more succesful than your own. Back in April, I had the pleasure of watching the Capitals crush the spirits of the Atlanta Thrashers, who finished just two points out of the playoffs, and probably would have had a shot if not for their loss to the Caps on April 17. And tonight at The Love Shack the Washington Nationals put an end to a serious dent in the Philadelphia Phillies run at a wild card berth.

What is it about playing the spoiler that titilates us so? The fact is, taking joy in the agony of destroying another team's season at the expense of adding a meaningless win to a lost season for your own is mean, vindictive and downright mean. But we do it anyway. In college sports, fans often root for the other teams from their conference to do well in lieu of their own team's success. I have a friend who makes it a point during the NCAA Tournament to root for whichever team eliminates her team of choice. When it comes to professional sports, though, I would rather see every team in the NFC East go 4-12 than see the Giants win a playoff game. I am at the point where I am deathly afraid of a Subway Series this October, only because I would seriously consider rooting for the Yankees, because God forbid any other NL East team enjoy any success.

Uh-oh. I've reached the end of the post and I still don't have a point. I'd better wrap it up. Okay, here goes: The point is that I am an evil, vindictive misanthrope and should probably be imprisoned in some way and cordoned off from the civilized society. In other words, I'll probably end up living out the rest of my days in Lincoln Financial Field.

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