My father was the ultimate sports fan, took losing to heart. There was no solace in coming close. He didn't care about the highlights; it was the result that mattered. And it was just his luck, or maybe it was his unluck, that as star printer for the New York Daily News, he did the layout for the front and back pages and saw the outcome in bold letters. He worked the night shift and I always knew the outcome of a game by whether or not I got to read the paper in the morning. When his team lost, he didn't bring the newspaper home. Wouldn't talk about it either.
"Sonny, for the sake of Pete. I know the score. Don't need to know why."
It wasn't so bad during summer or fall. The baseball Giants were contenders, and the football Giants were among the elite. But in winter and spring, when the Knicks and Rangers played, I listened to the radio to get the news. I once asked him why he didn't just tear out the sports section and bring home the rest of the paper, but he simply stared off in space and didn't answer me. My mother told me not to pursue the matter.
"What did he do when the Giants lost the championship game in 58?" It was against the Colts. Nationally televised. The most important football game of all time. The two-minute-drive. First overtime game. Sudden death.
"Kept the TV off for six months."