There is an election going on here in Canada. On October 19th people will be electing a new government to run the country for the next four years. Conventional thinking usually means voting for someone who you believe is the right man (or woman) to represent your district or riding. But in recent years people are voting based on how much they hate a candidate regardless of the fact they are the best person for the job. This leads to terrible results especially in Toronto where no one outside of the Trinity-Spadina area believes in socialism but they continue to vote these people into office because, for whatever reason, they don’t like the conservative candidate. And look where the city is today. But the thinking is as long as someone like Rob Ford is not the Mayor of Toronto, they are willing to live with higher taxes and deteriorating conditions.
This kind of thinking is also rooted in sports. There is no one in Canada, outside of Montreal, who likes the Habs. All of them hate the Maple Leafs. I can understand if you could care less how well the Toronto Blue Jays are doing in the 2015 baseball playoffs. So why are you cheering for their demise? A former colleague of mine picked the St. Louis Cardinals to win the World Series. Now that the Cardinals have been eliminated, he is now going with the Chicago Cubs. Why? Because he hates the Blue Jays. Actually, he hates everything Toronto especially the Maple Leafs so in this case it is a matter of association than anything else. Someone I know hates Canadian tennis player Milos Raonic so much he routinely cheers on his opponents regardless of how bad that player is. That’s not a sports fan, that’s being gutless. In my opinion, they have no business being involved in sport.
The only reason I can come up with as to why some people think this way is this: they can’t handle the disappointment of their team or player losing. I realize no one likes to see their team lose but that’s part of being a sports fan. Believe me, I have been a fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs for as long as since I have been alive. I don’t need to tell you how many Stanley Cups the team has won during that period. I mentioned the Cubs earlier. That team’s championship drought makes the Maple Leafs’ one an oasis. So can you imagine how they are feeling?
Supporting your team instead of constantly rooting against one has been proven to bring people together. No better example than the Blue Jays playoff run. Another is when a Canadian national team competes in international competition whether it is hockey, basketball, or baseball. I don’t know anyone in Canada who would cheer on Sweden or Russia unless they had lived in that country. So either get behind a team or get out of the way.
FLIPPING THE BIRD
The Jose Bautista bat flip in Game 5 of the American League Division Series has now become iconic. There have been impersonations, jokes, even a fan had the image tattooed on his leg. I would hazard to guess that there will be a statue of Bautista doing that bat flip outside Rogers Centre sometime in the future.
People who are up in arms about Bautista’s bat flip after he hit a monstrous go-ahead 3-run home run in that game should either chill or, better yet, get lost. In situations where your home run, goal, basket, or touchdown wins the game or the championship, you can’t help but show your emotions, especially when the Blue Jays have been getting a raw deal with the officiating during the ALDS. Compare that to a regular season game where a team is up by a double-digit margin and you show up your opponents the way Bautista did. That, like rooting against a team because you hate them, is also gutless.
Rangers reliever Sam Dyson was pretty pissed off with Bautista’s reaction. But Dyson seemed to have forgotten the fact that his team has gotten every call in every game in the series. And yet his team could not seal the deal. Show some respect, Sam. There is no crying in baseball.