Wednesday, June 06, 2007

America's Team

Hey, they like us. They really like us. Actually, I think they just pity us, but I'll take it.

Predictably, the national media is all over the 0 for 43 years and counting aspect of the Cavs' trip to the NBA finals. Michael Wilbon hosts a pity party for Cleveland in his Washington Post column this morning. John Romano holds one of his own in The St. Petersburg Times (and, I might add, gives some love to our friends at Bitterfans, The Disappointment Zone and God Hates Cleveland Sports in the process). Finally, just to show you that the pity party extends from sea to shining sea, here's the Tacoma News-Tribune's take on the whole Cleveland thing.

Guys, thanks for making the Cavs the feel good sports story of 2007, but I think some of you, and Michael Wilbon in particular, are a little over the top. Seriously, read this and try to come up with a reason not to kill yourself:

Cleveland didn't just shrink during the last 50-plus years, it shriveled. It was the nation's fifth-largest city in 1920 and remained in the top 10 through the 1970 census, but after a decades-long exodus it was the 39th-largest city in America in 2005, down from almost 915,000 residents in 1950 to 452,208. Nearly 180,000 people left in the 1970s alone, and the city reportedly lost 150,000 manufacturing jobs. Now, the median household income is 97th among the top 100 cities. The exodus, the 1968 riots and the city defaulting in 1978 led to a heap of ridicule, to the moniker "Mistake by the Lake." In 1972, as local legend has it, Mayor Ralph Perk's wife declined a dinner with President Richard M. Nixon because it interfered with her bowling night.

Yikes. Well, at least he didn't mention the burning river. That's okay though, because USA Today's John Saraceno made sure that nobody forgot about that little incident in his column.

It's tough here, but we aren't quite America's version of Bangladesh just yet. I mean, we even have indoor plumbing and everything. On the other hand, if you'd like to contribute to us, I'll set up a Paypal account and you can donate right here. I promise I'll put your money to good use. I swear I will.

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