Saturday, April 11, 2015

The zen of mediocrity

    The Onion very recently had a headline about Area Man Deriving His Self Worth From Performance of Professional Team. Where I live, that's not too funny, and there's no professional team. Downtown U. is not having its best year. The women's basketball team is great, but that's about it. The men's football team fell from several years of excellence to mediocrity. The men's basketball team is climbing from wretchedness to, you guessed it, mediocrity. The baseball team, after winning consecutive national championships not five years ago is barreling towards mediocrity.
    Mediocrity seems to be the destiny of University of South Carolina sports. The football team only made it over .500 for all time a couple of years ago. A five-year-run beating upstate rival Clemson barely put a dent in their gigantic series lead. We're pretty much the Chicago Cubs of the South, if maybe a little bit less godawful.
    But the Cubs and the Gamecocks teach us lessons. For all that Clemson says that USC's motto is "Wait 'til next year!" there is something to be said for always believing in next years. And the thing about beatdowns (baseball lost to Florida 14-3, last night, a respectable football score but not something you can feel good about in baseball), they never really make you appreciate the good times more, but they make you learn to forget them. And it's useful to realize that sports really aren't that important, that nearly everything else in life is more so, and you really can't derive your self-worth from the performance of a team. And then perhaps you can better appreciate the good times, sports-related or otherwise. But seriously-- 14-3? I ask you!

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