Superstition vs. Societal Acceptance

A lot is going on these days which seem to bring out some superstitious actions.  These demand a loyalty to commit to one thing instead of another.  This paradox is most recognizable in situations of one vs. another.  

Some examples are:  

  • Presidential Candidates, 
  • Sports
  • Gambling
  • Holiday Visits 
  • Religious beliefs 
  • Peanut butter brands

Given the most current example is that the Cubs (Chicago baseball ⚾️ team) won the World Series after 108 years.  They were cursed by a fan and his goat in 1908, many have blamed the lack of success on the curse.  Baseball has a lot of faith in superstitions; well at least from what I hear.

I don’t hear or read about superstitious football, hockey, or basketball players as often.  Baseball has always been known for their curses, cups, socks, mitts, hats facing this way or that, personal hygiene and of course the goat superstitions.  I don’t know why it is acceptable for the common fan to honestly believe in a curse or anything intangible which can determine the success as more than poppy cock.  Lets face it, this team got to where they are because it has talent.

My question is, when does the superstition end and habit/ muscle memory begin?  I’ve heard of a player who won’t change his socks if his team is in the playoffs until the playoffs are over. There are so many more examples from players and even more with the fans!   Thus this becomes a litany of random quirks and strange idiosyncrasies.  Don’t worry there is a camp for the naysayers.

Some of the odd superstitious habits in sports…

  • Never Step on the Foul Line
  • Leaving the Pitcher Alone in the Dugout
  • The Lucky Glove, Bat, Shirt, Hat or Necklace
  • Baseball: Nuke LaLoosh and Abstinence
  • Barry Bonds: Kissed the Cross on His Necklace After Each HR
  • Reggie Jackson: Wore the Same Helmet Even After He Switched Teams

And then there are the folks who could care less.  We all know them.  They are society  accepting minimalists in all things society assigns them; and  yet, still manages to be invited to join the fantasy league of the season, or even to bet on a potential end score -via a chart with numbers and names.   Is it the intention to turn Mr. Minimal into a believer by the souls who are embracing the fates of their own personal traditions?  Should we all be so open, yet closed minded?  Talk about a paradigm or shift!
We have all been privy to the presidential campaigns which have been riddled up with liable, slander and by violence.  The passions of some, clearly needing punishment by the passions of another.  Think about it!   

Never mind, I’ll just mention a few.  

  • Naturalist vs. Darwinist.  
  • Black vs. White.  
  • Rich vs. Poor.  
  • Coke vs. Pepsi.  

We are all in there somewhere; yet, we  are still tinged by the opposition.  There is no place that hasn’t been touched by the opponent.  Therefore claiming absolute belief in a team, beverage, church or brand is not realistic.

We are moved by weather and finances to find the geographical location we prefer  to inhabit; yet choose to cheer on a team outside of their current location. We are moved by the family roots to begin our own branch in the tree of life.  

It’s a tautology conundrum… why is the sky blue?  Because it reflects the oceans.  Then why are the oceans blue?  Darling, to reflect the sky, of course.  

Silly me.

Tautology conundrum

The Chicago Cubs beat not only their 108 year old curse; but also, the Cleveland Indians, last night.   I wonder if the win will be “enough” for the Cubs.  What will happen next year?  They certainly can’t blame a silly old goat for a failure.  Will the fans of either team change their beliefs and actions which represent their preference?  What is the real motivation for beliefs, idiosyncrasies, fate, and superstition? Is it a need to belong or a desire to connect with those of similar interests?

Fan Commitment -definitely not a Fair Weather Johnson

Which quirk will come to the forefront with the next round?  Or will the logic of removing the one’s quirk be replaced by  a new ornamental twist rationale?   Will it be able to entice the non-fan to choose a….(fill in the blank) _________ something, anything?  Will he/she collapse beneath society’s expectations and make a commitment (superstition, whole-heartedness and loyalty included)?  The money, time and sincere team support can be very draining.  Is it worth it when the season comes to an end (until next year)?  No pressure!

The Non-Fan Mentality
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