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WSI News - WSI Spotlight


"Curse" of Ineptitude?

by George Bova

The 2004 White Sox season is over and unlike previous seasons, the rest of the country's fans actually have a passing interest about what Sox Fans are thinking.  Of course the reason they're curious has nothing to do with the Sox themselves or anything we Sox Fans might have done the past twelve months to deserve a bit of national recognition.

Let's talk straight, Sox Fans.  We are anonymous on both the national and local media's stage.  Only Sox Fan imposters ever get much attention.  If the national media mentions us at all, it's because some drunk and tattooed fool is jumping out of the seats at 35th & Shields.  He isn't even a Sox Fan.  The local media is hardly better.  They trump the national media's "Sox Fan" coverage by adding follow-up stories about the ongoing saga of this same drunk and tattooed fool's repeated problems with the law and the hopelessly idiotic judge who keeps sending him back out onto to the streets to make an ever bigger of ass of both of them.  That's life as a Sox Fan and we're used to it.

No, what has the national media curious about Sox Fans is what we're think now that another group of fans has finally removed the self-imposed "curse" that made their team losers for the last 86 years.  Having finally won a world championship, the fans of the Boston Red Sox, media darlings of the Northeast, have to find a whole new schtick for Ken Burns, Peter Gammons, and others of their ilk to raise into mind-bending platitudes.  The Curse of the Bambino is over!  What can they find to complain about next?

New England and the self-described "tribe" of Red Sox Nation is doubtlessly busy figuring out a new way to reach for victim status.  Here's betting the goofiest of their lot will cling to the curse bit until Boston gets 26 championships to match the Yankees.  Don't expect any relief from these celebrity victims.  As Ken Burns once put it, "There is a special pain from coming so close so many times."  Gag!  Wretch!

We Sox Fans should be such victims.  There isn't one of us who wouldn't gladly trade places with Ken Burns or his "tribe."  For a moment let's overlook that  we've been waiting  a full year longer than Boston's "tribe" to win a championship.  Let's also overlook we have waited 40 full years between relishing even one lousy win in a World Series game-- not once but TWICE!  Compared to Sox Fans, Boston's fans wouldn't know "special pain" if it ran up and bit the seat of their pants off, chewed it up, spit it out, raised a leg, and pissed all over it.

Here's what can never be overlooked.  While Boston secretly relishes the "curse" that has brought them all this fawning nonsense about their special pain, Sox Fans suffer in complete anonymity sharing a city with a bunch of retards who actually enjoy their team's losing!

No Sox Fan ever called their team Lovable Losers.  It's our dumb luck to share the town with a bunch of dopes who do.  And it's this "special pain" that the national media, the local media, and yes-- everyone else in the universe -- simply can't understand.  We're Sox Fans living desperate lives suffering with no glory at all, least of all for the losing our team serves us in stomach-wrenching quantity that only makes us want to throw up.  There is nothing cute or lovable about it. 

And here is what else separates us from these fake victims from Boston and the North Side.  Unlike them, none of us ever ascribed our bad luck to a curse.  We know our team's history and we know damned well the reasons why they have been losers for years and years, decade after decade, and possibly for a century or more.  We Sox Fans are cursed with nothing more than lousy management in the front office and lousy play on the field.

It's a franchise "cursed" by management who hopes beyond hope that career mediocrities -- hopeless hacks like Jose Paniaqua, Ken Hill, Mike Devereaux, Dan Pasqua, Jerry Dybzinski, Ron  Blomberg, Dave Nicholson, and Gene Freese -- will suddenly bloom into the talent their oversized assigned roles require.  Reality just keeps slapping management in the face over and over again with every strikeout suffered and every home run fat pitch served.  And yet they're just too inept to ever fix the problem the rest of humanity fully recognizes, most of all we Sox Fans ourselves.

We Sox Fans still support this team out of sheer stubborn resolve, not because management or its players has ever delivered on the promises made to each of us every spring.  The rational Sox Fans who know how futile this has all become have long ago ceased to be Sox Fans.  Now we're down to a hardcore bunch that supports the team beyond all rational thought.

There is no glory being a Sox Fan, least of all for the mountains of losing our team delivers in epic fashion.  There cannot be any curse for the steely-eyed realists who know comprise Sox Fandom.  We know why our team sucks.  And "curses" made by billy goats and trading the Bambino have nothing to do with it.

Damn it all for making us Sox Fans!  Is ineptitude a curse?  Hardly.  The sooner the national and local media figure this out, the better off everyone will be.

George Bova is editor and founder of White Sox Interactive.  You can write George at

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