Sunday, September 02, 2007

Real Bad News

It's been 24 hours now and I still don't know what to say, because I feel like anything I say is just going to be hollow. I didn't do anything that made this happen, and yet somehow I still feel responsible. I can't do anything to change it, and yet trying to ignore it just makes me feel worse. I was there, I saw it happen, and yet, here we are.

I could give you every argument about hubris, about failing to respect a quality opponent, much better than their label or the expectations held by all but a very few people. I could attack any other of a dozen reasons as to why Michigan lost, but the simple matter is nothing that I say matters. Nothing I say as a fan matters, nothing of what I think as a fan matters, nothing of what I write as a fan matters, because in the end, I am just a fan and as much as I love Michigan football, and as much as I refer to the football team as "we", it's not about "we", and it never has been about "we". If it were a "we" thing, I could do something to make it better, I could do something to fix it, I could do something to ease the pain. But I can't and I think it is that powerlessness, that sense of a lack of control is what hurts the most in my mind. As fans, we believe we're truly a part of something, and somehow we derive a sense of personal self-worth from the fortunes of the team(s) that we root for (as inappropriate as that may seem in the objective abstract), and yet, in the end, we're just following the team, we're just supporting them and for everything we believe that we're doing to make things better for them, in the end, we're powerless.

So fans lash out. They attack the easy and obvious targets, they focus their rage by writing blog entries and comments that will never be seen by anyone than other fans, and they think they are somehow helping the team by "politely" pointing out what went wrong. The problem is, as fans, we only know what we're told and we have a tendency to see only that which we want to see. So we don't have the whole story, we don't have perfect knowledge, and in the end, our powerlessness is magnified.

In the end, I want to believe it's just one game, but I know it will come to mean much more than that. In the end, I want to believe that it will perhaps serve as a catalyst for change and improvement, but that is more hope than knowledge. In the end, we'll see thousands of words about what happened, and what should happen, but that is just the expression of opinion, not a plan of action. In the end, I'm trying to move past yesterday, but I know that I'm just writing this in a fruitless attempt to feel better. In the end, this is a pain that can only be diminished by time, and time is a constant.

But in the end, I am going to be there next week, because that is where I want to be, even if it hurts a lot right now.

1 comment:

Dylan said...

Those Who Stay Will Be Champions