In This Post I Guarantee That I Will Win the PokerStars Online Poker Blogger Tournament
I want to go on record here: I am going to win the tournament on Sunday--I guarantee it. I know there are going to be upwards of 9,000 people playing in it. I know that I am in the bottom quartile (sextile? nonotile?) so far as poker skill, talent, and experience goes. So what? I guarantee
that I'll win.
Why do I think I'm going to win? Because I think I am
. If the last ten or so years have taught us anything it's that the facts and objective truth are mere inconvieniences when confronted with total denial and a willingness to wholeheartedly believe in an artifical "reality". Hey, O.J. didn't kill Nicole and Ron. Enron and WorldCom are paragons of capitalistic innovation. Iraq's WMD must be neutralized before there's a mushroom cloud over Miami. Ashlee Simpson is a talented singer. I am going to win the tournament on Sunday. Like so many, I believe
So why put myself on the line like this? Because my guaranteeing victory is totally without risk. It's a freeroll. Let me put it to you this way--Joe Namath guaranteed that the Jets would beat the Colts in Super Bowl III. Had the Colts performed as expected and slaughtered the AFL champs, no one would remember Namath's boast except as an amusing little footnote. But the Jets won, and Namath became a sports legend for all time. The Jets had to play the game anyway--what's the harm in upping the ante and have a shot at immortality?
Let's look at another example. A few weeks ago Julian Peterson of the San Francisco 49ers guaranteed his team would beat the Dallas Cowboys. Peterson didn't get quite as much ink as Joe Willie--the Niners sucked large last year, and despite winning their opener will likely suck just as large this year. But Peterson understood--he could make his boast, get some air time, and, hey, the Cowboys ain't that great this year either. The Niners raced out to a big lead, which Peterson and his defensive cohorts couldn't hold. Dallas won. Did the national media jump on Peterson's throat for being wrong? Of course not. Nor have other players who made such claims been called to account for their hubris. They're losers--who cares.
Then again, unless the stage is sufficiently large, most folks don't care if you ARE right after guaranteeing a win. An early regular-season game between one team in the Reggie Bush sweepstakes and another who would be 5-11 if they played in the AFC isn't likely to get anyone's blood pumping. But there is a game on this week's schedule that WOULD garner a little bit of excitement. No, I don't mean my Steelers against the Bengals in the latter teams' biggest game since the Super Bowl they blew (congrats to Bungles fans, by the way--it usually takes you guys 2 or 3 seasons to win five games). No, the game in question is the undefeated Indianapolis Colts against the winless Houston Texans.
Now here's a game where a guarantee would be worth making. Let's say the squeaky-clean Peyton Manning got up during the week and said, "I guarantee we'll beat the Texans". Pretty much everyone would think the same thing--"No kidding, asshole". That would actually be big news--Peyton Manning acting like an asshole? Let's cut to Steve Young and Michael Irvin tut-tutting about it. The Texans would be riled up, the Houston crowd out for revenge, and the Colts would probably win by a score of 41-3. Other than the Texans' coaches and their dependents, who cares?
But say David Carr was the one who walked up to the podium and announced, "I guarantee we'll beat the Colts on Sunday" the reaction would be different. Everyone would think he's an idiot. And it's much worse in this country to be thought an idiot than an asshole. Hell, "asshole" is a target lots of people spend their lives shooting for. Make enough bad noise and you'll end up on magazine covers and get your own talk show.
But there's a lot more room for improvement when everyone thinks you're an idiot. Carr would have a ready excuse for making such a moronic boast--he's been sacked 197 times this season and no doubt his gray matter has been scrambled like so many farm-fresh eggs. Add the fact that such a statement would piss off the overrated but still top-ranked Colts defense, and that the Texans' cats-cradle of an offensive line would be hopeless against a Dwight Freeney so infuriated he plans to turn Reliant Stadium into Carr's personal Calvary. Idiot indeed.
But what of it? Everyone expects the Colts to run roughshod over the Texans, and if it happens it happens. No one will remember the guarantee or care. But what if Carr pulls it off? What if the Texans pull the huge upset, despite Carr being pounded into a red and blue crepe? He'd be a hero. He'd be untouchable in Houston. Instead of ditching him for Matt Leinart, the Texans might trade down and invest in some offensive line talent, increasing the odds that Carr will be able to eat food more substantial than pudding come his 40th birthday.
No one will care if I don't win on Sunday. But when I DO win, my guarantee will make the victory ten times as sweet. I'll be like Babe Ruth--I called my shot. I'll be able to lord it over everyone until the day I die. Even longer, if it get my boast inscribed on my tombstone. In neon letters. Now if you'll excuse me, I need to block off some vacation time for the cruise. And on the way home I have to remember to pick up some suntan lotion. Because I AM GOING TO WIN ON SUNDAY. I GARE-UNN-TEEE.