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The Underdog Loses Again

Chicago is known for a lot of things: Parks, museums, lakefront, stadiums, shopping and restaurants. But sports? C'mon, Detroit at least in this category has Chicago down cold.

So it was with great fanfare that the Wings and Blackhawks finally got together to play hockey. The last time the Blackhawks were in the playoffs my oldest son Michael (who moved to Chicago) was 13 and got to meet Ernie Harwell.

The Blackhawks were young, dominant, quick and full of pip and vigor. The Wings were old, strategic and injury-ridden. Even so, the Blackhawks were the underdog and rightfully so.

For some strange human reason, we always root for the underdog. Why? I had to go online to find the history of the underdog to help explain the reason. This is the best one I found:

"the beaten dog in a fight," 1887, from under + dog. Cf. top dog "dominant person in a situation or hierarchy."

Yes, a real dog was involved in this and a real dog was beaten. And herein lies the answer: we feel sorry for beaten dogs and we root for them to get better.

Rarely do underdogs upset the topdogs.  But when they do, people cheer, headlines are made and optimism is shared among the 99.5% of the other underdogs in the sports arena.

As far as Chicago goes, they were outclassed in every manner and were lucky to win a single game. It might be one reason for those who moved to Chicago to come back home to Detroit.

Happy Thursday!


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