Sports losses aren’t a real ‘tragedy’

Jeff Russ

I’m writing this wearing an Indians shirt.

Let’s be honest, this week sucked. It sucked watching yet another Cleveland team blow a lead and lose. It sucked to add another story to the crappy history that is Cleveland sports.

But maybe I am getting older and seeing a real world, because it didn’t suck like it used to.

I made a vow to myself this year to not let sports consume my life. I have made too many embarrassing acts and acted like a fool too many times in the name of sports in my life. I have fallen down a flight of stairs throwing my jersey during a Browns-Steelers game. I broke a radio while listening to a high school football game. I broke a number of remotes and chairs during sporting events. I promised myself I would no longer do these things.

Think about it, if a sports team (making millions more than I will ever make) losing is the worse thing that is happening to me, then I am a pretty lucky person. During Game seven, I thought about people who have real issues to be depressed and angry about. I thought about children in our city and country, who go to bed hungry or go to bed abused. I think about the layed-off worker who has no idea how to support a family. I think about the homeless man I saw at the Stark County Library who begged people for money this summer and could not get anything from anyone until I bought him a sandwich (I may be naive but I don’t care, and this is not about me). I think about the families who, every year on Sept. 11, read the names of family members killed by terrorists that day.

I think of a family my mom knew, who lost their son in a house fire this summer in Canton.

As much as the Indians game sucked, it would be selfish of me, someone who is healthy and happy, to treat something like a stupid baseball game like a tragedy. Gang violence, world hunger and civil wars are real problems – baseball is just a game. No one died in my family, and the world did not change.

Don’t misinterpret me as someone who hates sports and sports fans. I love sports. I am at this school studying to write about sports and plan on spending the rest of my life writing about sports. But to let a sporting event make me depressed for more than 10 minutes is ridiculous. I still woke up in the morning, I still had running water and I still was in perfect health. I still had friends and family who loved me and I still tried to love them more. I still was going to college and still a year away from a degree. I still had tests to fail. The sun still shined and the earth still spun.

Don’t let 25 millionaires who could not win one game negatively reflect you or this area. If you are still angry or depressed about games five through seven, turn off ESPN and type in Darfur or Iraq on Google and see how much Cleveland sports matters in context of the word ‘tragedy.’

Jeff Russ is a junior news major and a sports columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].