Few things make me question my humanity on such a frequent basis as watching my fellow humans take great pride in someone else’s athletic prowess.
The Iraqi soccer win is the latest bizarre example of this, especially odd since there are some pretty basic issues that should prevent Iraqis from having much pride at all. But hey, some stranger kicked a ball into a net so we can forget about all that.
This is not to be confused with taking pride in your own athletic achievements, of course. I just find that hooking your own wagon to somebody else’s achievements is pretty lame. Add to the fact that athletic achievements pale in comparison to say, what surgeons do every day. And on top of that is the complete lack of anyone questioning this insanity.
Mind you, I grew up in Pittsburgh in the '70s, so I was exposed to an extreme intensity of this phenomenon at an early age.