On any level of competition, whether sports, video games, board and card games – such as poker or chess, or a simple stare down contest — competitors seem to either walk away disappointed or excited, or a little bit of both.
While I don’t play much sports, video games or card and board games anymore, I still manage to hold my own, when challenged. Occasionally, I have to prove myself, when I go to my hometown in Alabama, or if my friend is feeling froggy in chess. My cousin in Alabama has never beaten me in a Madden video game, dating back to 2006, and, when I recently visited him, he expressed to me how much his game had evolved, and that he was going to beat me by at least two touchdowns. I have to be honest: I was a little worried that the streak might finally end, seeing that I hadn’t played in nearly a year, but I ended up beating him with a last-minute scoring drive (I still have it).
My best friend, who has begun to challenge me in chess, still finds it difficult to beat me, though I haven’t played in years, nearly a decade. When my cousin ever beats me in Madden, and, or when I lose in the FIFA and NBA 2K video games, I will often feel disappointed. Why? Because I never expect to lose.
I see this with the Mainland Buccaneers. No team scares them. If they don’t win the state championship this year, no matter how close they get, they will deem it a failure. While a championship for Matanzas may seem inconceivable, seeing they have yet to finish any season with a winning record, the Pirates’ confidence gets closer and closer to that belief with every win. I recently spoke to a few of their players about their schedule, and the only team they think can beat them is Mainland (they play Oct. 16). That says a lot about a team that was previously 2-7. One guy went as far as to say he wouldn’t be satisfied, if they loss by more than two touchdowns to the area powerhouse, but I know the Bucs think otherwise. A former Buc said he knows Mainland is going to destroy both Flagler Palm Coast and Matanzas, and some current players echoed his opinion.
Just imagine if Mainland barely squeaks by the Bulldogs or the Pirates. Though it will be a win, the winners would probably take it as a loss, and the losers would consider it a moral victory. That’s the psychology of expectations.
Which of your wins felt a lot more sour than some of your losses? Comment below! Follow Jeff Dawsey @PCOsports.