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And Another Thing

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Inappropriate gaiety

Sometimes you see something and you just know it's going to bring out the Old School in people, because every once in awhile everyone has to feed their inner old-guy-shaking-his-fist-and-yelling-at-those-darned-kids-to-get-off-his-lawn.

And so, this.

Couple of things about it:

1. These guys are professionals, which means, above all else, they're employees in a business. This isn't high school or college. There are no pompons. So, to think they're all going to go weep in their hotel rooms for the rest of the night because they lost the Super Bowl is simply not realistic.

2. The party at which they were getting their groove on was their own team party. If they weren't supposed to dance and have a good time, even though they lost, why did the team throw the party to begin with?

Again, not realistic to expect a bunch of young guys to show up at a party with live music and just, you know, go sulk in the corner somewhere.

That doesn't mean they weren't bummed because they lost. I'm sure for an hour or so afterward, they were extremely bummed. But they all understand, as guys who've been playing the game all their lives, that losing happens to everyone.

Even high school kids understand that, frankly. I can't tell you how many times I've covered teams that lost in the state finals, and, yes, there were some tears, initially, and a lot of unhappiness. But I'm always amazed by the fact that, by the time I wrapped up my interviews and get ready to leave the field, I actually started seeing some smiles again. And I don't think any less of the kids doing the smiling, because to me it's a perfectly natural progression.

Even the coaches know this. Their standard postgame speech, after all, goes like this: Be sad, angry, whatever, that you lost. But feel good about what you accomplished getting there, too.

That's called perspective, people. And it's a good thing.

Ben Smith's blog.

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