by Mitch Powers
March Madness has begun, and with it comes the chance to win a billion dollars from Warren Buffet, upsets, upsets of the people who didn’t win a billion dollars, and the improper use of the term bracket.
According to Purdue OWL: “If the context of your quote might be unclear, you may add a few words to provide clarity. Enclose the added material in brackets.” For example: “I am completely baffled and confused [by March Madness] and that is why basketball gives me a headache.”
When Caesar went to fights in the coliseum, he didn’t go to watch some scrawny unarmed prisoner punch a lion. He went to see how long it would take for the lion to completely devour its puny little running snack. In a way, it is very similar to today’s hot dog eating contests which, in my opinion, are hugely undervalued as a true American sport.
To a non-native to basketball, the whole concept of March Madness seems very strange. Why do they let everyone play? Why is it four weeks long? Why does everyone cheer for the underdog? Why basketball? What is the meaning of life?
Schadenfreude is a German word meaning pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others. It is truly the only possible reason I can derive for the popularity of March Madness. We love seeing people fail. We love to watch fifth ranked Cincinnati get beat by 12th ranked Harvard. (Side question: Harvard had a basketball team?) Like it or not, March Madness is here and the unrelenting squeaking of shoes on the court has begun.
Oh, and in case you were hoping to win that perfect bracket, the odds are one in 9,223,372,036,854,775,808. Good luck!