Friday, October 30, 2009


Main Entry: su·per·sti·tion from Merriam-Webster's online dictionary

Pronunciation: \ˌsü-pər-ˈsti-shən\

Function: noun

Etymology: Middle English supersticion, from Anglo-French, from Latin superstition-, superstitio, from superstit-, superstes standing over (as witness or survivor), from super- + stare to stand — more at stand

Date: 13th century

1 a : a belief or practice resulting from ignorance, fear of the unknown, trust in magic or chance, or a false conception of causation b : an irrational abject attitude of mind toward the supernatural, nature, or God resulting from superstition

2 : a notion maintained despite evidence to the contrary

A couple weeks ago I was driving through central Minnesota. I was listening to the radio and one of the few options I could find to listen to was a Christian AM station. Anyone who has driven through central Minnesota knows there are not alot of radio station options and I did not have my car with its XM radio. Anyway, this station was speaking of superstition vs. belief in god and the hosts pretty much agreed with the definition #1 of superstition given above.

As sports fans I don't think it is that simple or transparent. Most fans are normal thought provoking individuals in their day-to-day lives. When it comes to sports however, people get a little crazy, a little creative, and generally have alot of fun with superstitions. Superstitions are as much a part of sports as the ball itself.

Justin Morneau wore the same Todd Bertuzzi T-shirt under his uniform in 2006 and he won an MVP. He continued to wear it until it fell apart? I often make sure to wear a certain jersey or hat or wear a hat a certain way when one of my teams is playing. I generally beat a dead horse when it works or move on to the next thing if it does not work.

2009 has been a transition year for my life. I found out in May I would be losing my job in August (September). I generally sport a goatee, but shaved it off for an interview with the company buying my then current employer. I didn't get the job. I kept the clean look for a bit until my mind started to wander. The Twins had been playing terrible recently, and obviously, my facial hair was to blame. I decided to grow the goatee again. A few weeks later, I was now unemployed and I had another job interview, I waited until after the Twins game the night before to decide on shaving. They lost that night and decided to shave. I didn't get that job either. On September 12th a beard was starting to fill my face as I had no employment reason to shave. The Twins record was 58-51 when I carried the goatee & 12-21 when I had been clean shaven up to this point. Obviously it was my facial hair? If a goatee is good a beard must be better, no? I decided not to shave at all. The following is some of my beard related twitter posts:

Beard is 5-0

11:58 PM Sep 18th from Echofon

The beard is 6-0 wish I could of watched, probably looked like an idiot fist pumping while riding a bike

7:24 PM Sep 19th from Echofon

Beard is 7-1

10:55 PM Sep 21st from Echofon

The beard is 8-1

10:51 PM Sep 22nd from Echofon

Beard is 9-1!

11:23 PM Sep 23rd from Echofon

The beard is 10-1

11:22 PM Sep 25th from Echofon

The beard is 11-1

10:14 PM Sep 26th from Echofon

The beard was magic!
Other Twins fans got on board as well; here are some of their responses:

kbrobaseball @ShawninBing Keep that beard!

12:51 PM Sep 18th from web in reply to ShawninBing
plunking_gomez @ShawninBing Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, shave.

11:21 AM Sep 19th from web in reply to ShawninBing
fran_the_man @ShawninBing Want to see that beard keep growing for several more weeks ... replace your Rick Nielsen/Cheap Trick look with the ZZ Top boys!

8:57 PM Sep 19th from TweetDeck

thrylos98 @ShawninBing keep that beard!!!

11:26 PM Sep 23rd from web in reply to ShawninBing

plunking_gomez @ShawninBing That's it, you can't shave. Ever.

11:27 PM Sep 25th from web

There were some comments via facebook as well but I will enclose a picture instead:

Here's what I hope you look like at the end of next Twins season.

Clearly, the end of the season was magical for the Twins. I had a blast with the beard thing and I know friends and Twins fans did as well.
So, what say you about superstition in sports?
Do you think it is a belief or practice resulting from ignorance, fear of the unknown, trust in magic or chance, or a false conception of causation or an irrational abject attitude of mind toward the supernatural, nature, or God resulting from superstition?
Do you think it's another enjoyable way to be involved with your team?
As an aside: Recently I had a job interview, I'd gone 0-3 over the last year in job interviews. I'd shaved every time. This interview I decided to keep my goatee..... I start my new position November 16th.
Leave comments please on what you do for superstitions. Binghamton


  1. I love superstitions in sports. And when it comes to the Twins, I have a bunch of them. I'll only choose one so I don't take over your comments section.

    Whenever I watch the game on TV, I talk to Joe Nathan. When the camera shows his face, I look deeply into my television, and I sternly, but not angrily (the tone really matters), say "Joe. No Interesting." It takes all the concentration I can muster. And if he happens to allow a baserunner, I change it to "Joe. No MORE interesting."

    Sometimes I even give a Bronx cheer if the camera shows the batter.

    And it almost always works. (Never mind the fact that Joe's a really good pitcher and would be just fine without me.)

    If I happen to be listening on the radio, I stare at the dial and say it.

    I've been doing this for years -- ever since it was "Eddie. No interesting."

  2. I can only get a new beer in odd numbered innings. Sometimes it's a real sacrifice.