Being a good sport in politics

I was thinking just the other day – yes, it happens occasionally – about the onslaught of politically-based TV, radio, mail and phone advertisements which have been bombarding my household over the last few months, and how much I hate it. And how happy I'll be – or dare I suggest, we ALL will be – when election day has come and gone.

Personally, I lost faith in the political system long ago, and I mention this just to forewarn you that if you're expecting my column to have a political slant to it, you'll be disappointed. In a nutshell, I don't trust ANY politicians; my feeling is they stopped caring about you and me a long time ago. So I, in turn, have simply reciprocated the complete disregard.

I much prefer thinking about sports in general, and how much I love 'em. (Note: I specifically said "sports in general" as opposed to "Cleveland sports," otherwise I couldn't play the "love" card with any measure of credibility). Thoughts such as these get me to my "happy place" – though admittedly, not as often as I'd prefer. 

Then, much to my surprise, I had what I believe the deep thinkers refer to as an epiphany – you know, when something becomes abundantly clear – and now, my friends, I feel I have progressed to that very level of intellectualism, with a much clearer understanding of what it's all about.

What have I discovered to be so extraordinary that I have devoted an entire column to it? The meaning of life? Secrets of the universe? The dinner buffet at the Horseshoe Casino?

Sorry, gang. As important as all of the above are, they're all trivial when stacked up alongside my stunning revelation. Yes, friends, I have determined that in many respects, (drum roll, please) sports and politics are essentially mirror images of each other. (Wow! I can cut the stunned silence of the masses with a knife.)

So how can it be that I love sports and hate politics, yet they are virtually one and the same? Consider that, as the psychologists tell us, when we get to the extreme with one emotion, we cross over to the other emotion, such as laughing and crying. For example, when you laugh incredibly hard, you actually begin to cry, capice? 

Nonsense, you say? Balderdash? Or, for those of you doubters from across the pond: fiddle-faddle?

Well, before you get too hysterical, let's compare politics and sports.

Exhibit A: In both instances, don't we entrust our hard-earned cash-ola to these people, only to regret doing so just a short time later? Tickets or taxes – are they really so different?

Exhibit B: Don't they, as a general rule, promise one thing when trying to drum up support for their product/service, but deliver results barely resembling that which had been promised?

Exhibit C: Periodically, don't they all try to convince us of all the good they've done for the community, yet most of their claims are clearly erroneous or flat-out, fictitious pipe-dreams?

Exhibit D: When they're standing up there, clearly stretching the truth right in front of your eyes, don't you have an overwhelming desire to march up to the podium and deliver YOUR opinion via a good swift kick to the rear of the spokesperson?

From where I stand, Nov. 6 can't get here fast enough, but there is one area where I think politics has a clear edge over sports, and in particular, sports owners such as the Dolans or Randy Lerner:

Term limits!

Jeff Bing

Lifelong Westlake resident who dabbles in writing whenever the real world permits.

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Volume 4, Issue 21, Posted 9:59 AM, 10.16.2012