You may recall (though there is no compelling reason why you should) that we once had a Readers Forum on the topic of sports fan misery.
In a comment on said forum, Matt Masterson contended that there is no more accursed creature on earth than a Cincinnati Bengals fan.
Now, proving his point, Matt has requested that this topic be revisited in the following fashion:
“I believe based on 3 stats I can prove the Bengals are the most pathetic of all the pathetic franchises. I say you open it up to all readers. Give them a chance to post the three stats that best prove the pathetic nature of their favorite pathetic sports franchise.”
Because this exercise could possibly prove to be in some way cathartic for Matt and his fellow “Who Dey” sufferers (Paul Daugherty devoted an entire column to them in yesterday’s Enquirer), and because Mr. Andrew Cashmere recently lamented that we have not had ourselves a good Readers Forum in a while, we will indulge them by opening it up and inviting you to participate.
I (Ben) maintain that the most miserable sports fans are those like myself who root for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Wait! some might say. The Pirates have been world champs before! Shouldn’t that alone disqualify them from this misery fest?
And here’s where I’ll invoke the “in my lifetime” rule to this forum. The Pirates have been world champs in my lifetime, but I was two when it happened (1979). That doesn’t count.
My formative years were spent knowing nothing but defeat, spare a three year run as NL East champs (1990-1992) that ended in a soul-crushing loss (Game 7 of the 1992 NLCS in Atlanta) which was a defining moment of my difficult teenage existence.
But Mr. Masterson wants stats, so I’ll give him stats.
1. Since that Game 7 loss, the Pirates have never had a winning season. That’s eighteen consecutive losing seasons.
2. That’s the longest streak not just in MLB history but in all of professional sports.
3. Matt will tell you that the Bengals have the worst winning percentage of any sports team over the past two decades — even worse than the Pirates. This may be true. But Pittsburgh has lost 1,530 games since Sid Bream slid past Mike LaValliere. I just spent the past fifteen minutes researching that statistic. That’s pretty pathetic all by itself.
Matt et al. — the floor is yours.
But first, a gallery of losers:
“I lost, and I still have bad b.o.!”
“Why did they make this bar exactly five feet ten inches tall??”
“We’re losers AND Bruce Pearl is our coach!”
“I thought British Knights were still cool!”
“Uh, Timmy, your Pinewood Derby car is a block of Gouda cheese.”
“It’s complicated, Lena.”
Life isn’t fair, Becky.