The World Cup is near its climax. The sporting world's most coveted trophy will be hoisted by the victors on Sunday morning. If the referees were even decent, this year's World Cup would have been one of the best ever, with all of the surprises and upsets that occurred over the past month.
I know. You may be thinking "No, not another World Cup article." Don't fret. This is probably the last time I'll write about the World Cup in mathNEWS. By the time the next tournament begins in 2006, I will probably be long gone (unless a) I get admitted to the Ph.D program at UW; b) I become a UW staff member; or c) I become the MP for K/W, none of which are likely to happen).
This term many mathNEWS staff have taken an interest in sports journalism, and your's truly is no exception. However, with the way things are going, teams may start petitioning mathNEWS to stop mentioning them.
Some of you may have heard of the SI (Sports Illustrated, a magazine which mathNEWS has borrowed ideas/layout/covers from numerous times) cover curse. This is a phenomenon where shortly after a team/player is put on the cover of an issue of SI, the team/player encounters injury troubles, losing streaks, or cold streaks. It seems like the phenomenon may have crept into the pages of mathNEWS.
In this term, many of the sports teams which are mentioned on the pages of mathNEWS are being knocked out. A writer wrote "Go Leafs Go" in the first issue and they were knocked out in the next round (all right, the Canes were also mentioned and they went to the Final, but remember that one of them has to win).
That brings us to the person most responsible for the curse — moi . In one article alone (actually one paragraph), I doomed four teams in the World Cup. If you read my World Cup article two issues ago, you may recall that I mentioned France, Argentina, and Italy as favourites to win it all. Guess what? The teams combined to win 2 games and scored all of 7 goals in 10 games played. The fourth team mentioned in the paragraph, China, got zeros on every column, except losses and goals against.
All right, one article doesn't make a pattern. Last spring, I wrote about the Canadian mens football team's future successes. The team lost to Malta in its next game. One time, I mentioned Mike Tyson in an article, and he got KO'ed the next time he faced a QUALITY opponent. Also, whenever I watch a game, in person or on the TV (or listen on the radio), the teams which I cheer for loses more often than not. You can say that I cheer for a bunch of losers, but when this goes on for 8 years, something is at work here. [Note that Jason is from Vancouver — TaxiEd]
If this trend continues, maybe teams will start begging mathNEWS to stop mentioning them. Of course, there is a positive in all this — mathNEWS being recognized outside the UW campus. I think I should stop this rambling now.
In my next column, I will talk about the correlation between mathNEWS articles and the rise and fall of course grades.
Jason "Screaming 'That's Onside!'" Lau