Ann Cannon: Here’s what losing feels like

First Published      Last Updated Nov 01 2016 05:12 pm

Watching the World Series this past week has caused me to reflect upon the nature of fandom—its high and its lows. Especially its lows. Every time I watched a game, I was almost morbidly aware that half the people present in the ballpark would walk away unhappy.

Why so glum?

Honestly, I don't know. Maybe after years and years and YEARS of rabidly following certain teams, I've gotten to that place where the highs of winning can't compensate for the lows of losing, which is why I have written this little essay about what losing feels like. And I really, really hope my English teacher will give me an A, although I'm not sure that would cheer me up when my teams lose.

What Losing Feels Like

By Ann Cannon

Losing feels like a paper cut. A paper cut on top of another paper cut. Losing feels like offering to buy all your friends lunch and then realizing you left your wallet at home. Or that you've maxed out your Visa card. Losing feels like a root canal. Without the anesthesia. It feels like knocking your crazy bone on the edge of a table, over and over again.

How else does losing feel?

Losing feels like being chosen last to play kickball during sixth-grade recess. It feels like the moment you realize you've had spinach wedged between your front teeth all day long. Or that moment you look down and see your half-slip swimming around your ankles in public. Or that moment when you realize you've already told this story before to the same people. Five minutes ago.

Losing feels like walking straight into a plate-glass window while everyone is staring because you thought it was a doorway. (Dude. Why do they keep their windows so clean at Trolley Square?)

Losing feels like a blind date that isn't going well. Or watching a person embarrass himself without realizing he's embarrassing himself. Or embarrassing yourself without realizing you're embarrassing yourself. Losing feels like stubbing all five toes at once or slamming your fingers in the door of a taxi cab. Losing feels like showing up for an important meeting a day late. Or swearing in front of your grandmother. Unless, of course, your grandmother swears, too.

Losing feels like getting swarmed by hornets. Or being forced to listen to Muzak Christmas music at work all day with the volume turned way up high. Or bumping your head hard enough on an overhanging beam that you see stars. Losing feels like getting the 24-hour flu after a night spent binge-eating pizza. Or locking yourself out of the house in your underwear. (Not that I would know about that.)

Still need some more examples?

Losing feels like being involved in a fender bender. Especially if you're the cause. Losing feels like putting your car in reverse when you thought you'd put it in drive. On a hill. Losing feels like getting pulled over and not being able to find your registration or your proof of insurance. (Not that I would know about that, either.)

Losing feels like showing up to a party wearing a prom dress while everyone else is decked out in jeans. Or vice versa. Losing feels like accidentally pushing the "reply to all" button. Losing feels like brushing your teeth with hemorrhoid cream when you thought you were using toothpaste. But at least (as my brother Jimmy says) you won't have to worry about your gums swelling.

None of these things is fatal. None of them even affects your real life in any profound or lasting way — unless, of course, you're the team's manager.


Losing. Just. Stinks.

The end.