Being a Fan 101: 10 Ways to Deal with a Loss
Die-hard fans know how to celebrate a win; raucous parties, a commemorative tattoo, or rubbing it in the losing fan’s face…but knowing how to deal with a loss is a whole different ball game.
A loss, depending how bad it is, can be forgotten by morning or will become something that fans refuse to bring up at the dinner table.
To prevent you from going into a spiral of depression, here are a few methods fans have perfected over the years when faced with a crushing defeat.
There's Always Next Time
This is one of the oldest sayings in the sporting world. True optimistic fans have been known to go for decades without championships, titles and awards on this phrase alone.
Just look at San Jose Sharks fans. They haven’t even won a conference championship let alone the Stanley Cup and still fans cling to their adage, "next year, next year."
If that isn't a real fan, I don’t know what is.
Psychologists agree that releasing anger on a physical object can relieve tension and even bring on a catharsis for the individual in question – they didn't realize that sports fans have been doing that for hundreds of years.
Nothing says "fan" like breaking something after a loss; a chair, a window, or, as the case is a lot of the time, someone else"s face.
Probably the least popular method for a loss is blaming someone else.
The ref didn’t give us the call, if we had our best player things would be different, or best of all "they got lucky."
While this isn't quite as effective as other methods, it gets the job done with minimal effort on the fan's part.
At Least We're Better Than...
For those teams who have been kicked while they're down, fans have had to get creative in their consoling techniques.
For the defeated fan the best thing to do is try and find a silver lining – "at least we aren't as bad as THOSE guys."
Just look at Washington State football. They have been through the wringer, and honestly there isn't a whole lot of "claim to fame" for them aside from finishing dead last in the Pac-10 last year with a record of 2-10.
Perhaps their cheering thought is that Idaho State (who they play Sept. 3) had a record of 1-10 last season…you gotta start somewhere.
This is probably the most sought after method out there for the heartbroken fan.
The teams that still have bragging rights give fans something to fall back on when that embarrassing loss comes around.
Remembering the "good ole days" helps the likes of USC and Laker fans, and is a source of great annoyance to everyone else.
If you are lucky enough to have this avenue available to you, take advantage of it.
Excessive Eating and Drinking
It’s a known fact that sporting events entail eating horribly unhealthy food and drinking booze. Now how MUCH of this fans do, depends entirely on the situation of the game at hand.
This coping mechanism has prevailed for decades and has finally become an art form for modern sports fans.
From bar fights to eating a tub of KFC, fans find comfort in food and drink.
Football fans (soccer in American) put other sports fans to shame when it comes to riots after losing a tough match…or winning one.
Fans find solace together by looting stores, brawling in the streets and setting fire to random cars.
A fan base that riots together stays together.
Scott K & Mahoney, East End Sports Cards in Louisville, KY. 7/1/09
Now I know this may sound odd from a sport fan standpoint, but retail therapy is a valid outlet for the grieving fan.
Fans can work out their woe by tromping around malls and buying things that make them feel good, whether that’s new shoes or a new grill.
Post Game Venting Session
Lots of fans are guilty of this…calling post-game talk shows and ranting to hundreds of listeners.
This rage has found an outlet and a platform to blast it from.
A more indirect approach, but effective nonetheless.
...right, like anyone does that.