Sport Superstitions and Jinxes

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Despite this blog being about rational thought, I will admit there are times I'm deeply irrational. Most of those instances has to do with sports.

I love sports and I'm a hugely devoted fan. I actually get very upset when the team I'm rooting for starts to play badly. I'm also very prone to believing in superstitions and jinxes. For example, today I was watching the Lakers and Spurs in their playoff game. The game was back and forth throughout much of the game.

The Lakers were doing well at the beginning but at one point in the game, my host, walks into the room. Now mind you, I'm at my friends place and he is being kind enough to let me watch the game because I don't currently have cable TV. Sure enough, as soon as he walks in, the game starts going south for the Lakers. My friend, who is also a devout sports fan, kindly says, "I'm a jinx, I'm leaving." Later in the game, I realize that every time my girlfriend rubs my shoulders, the Lakers start doing better. Seriously. She stops rubbing my shoulders, and BAM, the Spurs go on a run. I point it out to her and ask her to start rubbing again, and the Lakers go back up by seven points.

Deep down, I know I'm being completely illogical. I know all these things are merely coincidence and there is no way any of these actions are related to the outcome of a sporting event. But when I'm watching sports, the rational side of me goes right out the window. If I have to stand on my head while wearing only one sock to ensure victory, I probably will.

Why do you think we are this way? Why do sports fans think that their inane actions has any bearing on a game that quite frankly doesn't mean all that much?