Did the last time your favorite soccer team beat their rival happen before you were born? Did your team once score a winning goal while you were in the bathroom, and you were never allowed to watch a game with your friends again? Do you refuse to watch your team play until the game is over because you think they will lose if you watch live?
If so, you’re what I affectionately refer to as “the Grim”. Whether you have bad luck and just so happen to only go to games that your team loses, or you are actually the cause of your team’s loss (probably the latter), you’ve become your friends and family’s scapegoat. As the Grim, you’re blamed for all of your favorite team’s shortcomings. If the opposing team scores a goal, you’re immediately told to go sit in the other room, because the only way that could possibly have happened is because you stepped into the room. You have more influence on a game played a few thousand miles away than you might think.
Don’t stress out too much; you’re not the only Grim out there. Mick Jagger, for instance, is called “Pé frio” (cold feet) by Brazilians because he is infamous for picking teams to win world cup matches that end up losing. However, this is one celebrity trend you do not want to follow. Once the word is out that you’re bad luck, you will never be invited to watch soccer games by your peers or family again. So here are some tips to get through the struggle of being your favorite team’s worst nightmare.
- Stay positive. Remember that you are, deep down, a great person. While you may be blamed for your team’s loss, other fans don’t hate you as much as your inadvertent actions. It’s also helpful to remind yourself of the teams you aren’t bad luck for (if such teams exist).
- Stop it. Do exactly the opposite of whatever you’ve been doing. For example, I’m bad luck for any men’s team in the world cup whenever I’m in that team’s country. During the 2006 world cup championship between Italy and France, I was in Paris when Italy won. During the 2014 world cup, I was in Spain for the first two games of the group stage (which they lost) and left right before their third game (which they won). Unfortunately, I came back just before the U.S. lost to Germany in the group stage and then lost to Belgium in knockout stage. Therefore, I plan to do my part in the 2018 world cup and travel to every country the U.S. is slated to play; you know, for the good of my country.
- Make someone else the grim ASAP. If you can manage to convince friends to watch just one more soccer game with you (even with your history of bad luck), you can also convince them that someone else is the grim. Ideally, you want to catch a friend out of the room when your team scores, so you can say that the only reason they scored was because your friend wasn’t watching. However, desperate times call for desperate measures. If you’re desperate enough, you can get away with saying pretty much anything someone else does is unlucky. Maybe the other team scored because your friends put their feet up on the table, or your team lost because someone bought a different brand of guacamole than you usually get. There is no unlucky act too unreasonable.