For many of us, the holiday months of November and December can mean a couple of things: A great time to catch up with family, or a sobering time of reflection on our floundering sports teams.
But every time I start to feel like I don't stand a chance of seeing a trophy hoisted, I think of how it must feel to be a Cubs fans, or worse, a Cleveland native.
All cities can't be as successful as San Francisco as of late, or experienced success like Boston. But then again, at least you haven't suffered heartbreak like being an Oakland fan, where making the playoffs is dubbed as a "miracle season," or a "magical run."
So let's look at some activities that most of us can take on in this time of bleak circumstances.
Whether you are an alumnus of a prestigious university, or you got your masters at National University, college basketball offers the perfect refuge, the perfect diversion for your failing pro team.
There are no real rules to which team you can start cheering for, as long as you obey the rivalry rules, which state that, if you are a resident of Tuscaloosa, there will be no cheering for the Auburn Tigers.
Bandwagon fans are actually non-existent within College Basketball, because after all, everyone picks their bracket in March based on who they think is going to win, not who they want to win. So, technically, even the die-hard college fans have some, what I like to call, dual-fanism going on here.
So saddle up, there is no limit to how many teams you can "like."
Hopefully you didn't draft all of your favorite teams players, like I stupidly did one year. Hopefully your team still has a reasonable shot at playoff glory...that is, if you even like fantasy sports.
Much like gambling, but without the risk, fantasy football allows fans to root for players in otherwise meaningless games. This can improve one's Sunday, but can create indifference when Drew Brees is your quarterback, and you know he will destroy your teams tissue-paper secondary.
Go ahead and create a fantasy basketball, baseball, and even golf team. Get yourself a fantasy NASCAR team, if that exists. Maybe one team you watch will make the playoffs for once.
Every show has them. That one guy that calls in every morning and gains a reputation, whether it be in the "Smack off" on the Jim Rome show, or that person that just likes to argue on their local sports radio network.
Make a name for yourself!
This could be the time to get the frustrations out, air your teams dirty laundry. I heard Sebastian Janikowski gambles on the team jets with thousands of dollars.
Where's my source? Who cares, it sounds true enough for a guy that it would seem fitting if he were smoking a cigarette when he lined up to boot a 70-yarder.
But for most of us, having a job makes this a tough proposition. I have the perfect solution
You can be a message board monster, meaning, going from message board to message board, riling up fans of your enemies, or bantering with your teams fans on things that anger you. I know of one such site that allows this, and is often seen directly below the article, which is usually in some sort of slideshow-type layout.
Whether you are 25, or 75, remember the good ole' days usually warms the heart. Some memories, however, should never be recalled. We all have those ones, the ones that cost you the season, or a shot at hoisting the trophy.
If you follow a team that has no such history, remembering a game for how memorable it was, even if it lacked importance, is also acceptable.
"Remember how bomb those ribs were at that one tailgate?"
Chances are, you forgot the outcome of the game, anyways.
This is a last resort, and only really qualifies you in a couple of categories.
For one, a star player must have chosen not to try, or not sign back with your team, therefore hurting your chances at success. See, LeBron James, or Randy Moss leaving the Raiders for more qualifications.
In dire circumstances, hoping that your rival suffers equal misery that your team has is also acceptable. For example, when the AFC West teams lose, it makes me happy, therefore I root for the Chargers, Broncos and Chiefs to lose concurrently.
Taking a stab at your in-state rivalry after a loss can be more hurtful for them, because after all, they are actually in the hunt for the playoffs, and chances are, another loss for your team only means higher on the draft board, and more on Mel Kiper's radar, which is quickly becoming more like a blindfolded throw of a dart.
Sports is just an egocentric, self-fulfilling display of barbarians that are overpaid, and underachieve. And they make a bazillion dollars!
Everybody hates "that guy," but what better way to get people off your back for that 55-10 blowout your team just suffered. Of course, your true friends still know your true stripes, so this one only works when it comes to avoiding criticism for that Chiefs umbrella you bust out when it rains, or those Miami Dolphin board shorts that you haven't gotten a chance to replace.
So, next time you have a second, go pick up some new bestsellers from Barnes and Noble. Maybe that one that talks about ESPN and all the controversies, or "Moneyball," explaining the Athletics game plan. You know, that game plan that Brad Pitt acted out.
If you wanna go all the way, now is your chance to catch up on some factual accounts. I heard "Freakanomics" really lays it all out there.
Even the president is doing it!
What better hobby to take up then the one that literally everyone agrees on. Does anyone actually not want a playoffs in college? Well, other then Tostitos and Chick-fil-a?
This could be a good chance for you to vent, and have others agree unanimously with you. Maybe you will make a friend in the process.
I don't really have any shows, but many people I know can't survive without the latest episode of "The Walking Dead," or "How I Met Your Mother." I'm more of a Simpson's, Seinfeld, and National Geographic, Discovery and History Channel kind of guy. The DVR provides hope for us all.
Load that baby up with every show imaginable, that way when the blow-out starts to take shape, you can start knocking shows off your check-list. Who knows, it could even be shark week or something.
If you have a friend with a Netflix account, there's no need to buy your own. Simply log on to the website using their user-name and password, and you have instant gratification during that 10th loss Sunday.
We just want Marqise Lee, or we are trying to land a top-ten pick next year. That's what is, we are re-building.
Just like the nostalgic strategy, the futuristic approach can't be proven wrong or irrelevant. No one can tell you that with numerous key additions, a different result would be impossible. Therefore, start thinking about how cool it would be to get that key off-season addition. Start head-hunting like a staffing company.
Would Michael Vick make your team better? Would trading McFadden for picks be the safest bet? Or, would trading picks for players be better?
The future is up to you...well, until someone that actually controls that choice decides what they want to do. But until then, you can be an arm-chair analyst.
Anything you say, goes.
Colorado and Washington featured a little more then just your average presidential debate. Rumor has it, and articles back it up, that the stickiest of the sticky was recently legalized in these liberal states.
What better way to forget about your problems legally, with different results that may not include bar-fights, DUI's, or 3 a.m. burritos....no wait, there will definitely be 3 a.m. burritos.
Plus, sometimes, the herbal medicine can allow you to do all 9 previous techniques seamlessly, because apparently, there may be a side effect of "I can figure anything out." That's what a friend from Washington told me, or course..