Schadenfreude (IPA: [ˈʃaːdənˌfʁɔʏ̯də] Audio (German) (help•info)) is a German word meaning 'pleasure taken from someone else's misfortune'
As we bring in the Chinese New Year today, the Year of the Rat, how appropriate that February has been declared “Schadenfreude Month” in the New England states.
Oh, before I get into the particulars, a distant relative of “Schadenfreude” is “Schitthedfreude,” meaning “to bemoan the success of one’s football team ad nauseum.” For an exemplary of Schitthedfreude, look no further than across the street at Stillers.com, and visit the bullshit set forth by Still Mill relative to the offensive pass interference call on Darrell Jackson in SBXL. Two years removed, this has been dredged up, and hammered on all week long by this supposedly rabid Steelers fan. I’ll be gentle in my assessment. He’s being exposed as a jackass on his own site.
Back to Schadenfreude. This week, my work place has been a rather compelling microcosm of Schadenfreude this week, offering misfortune on the part of my Patriot fan charges, employees and associates. I’ve certainly “taken pleasure” in every instance.
Back on December 10th, the day following the Steelers loss in Foxboro, there was note placed on my desk by 15 year old Angel…
Congratulations on your loss. Ben played great against us, but our team is better. Come talk to me if you want to fight.
Well, last Friday, Angel asked me for my prediction on the game, and I predicted….true story…a 3-point Giant win, to which Angel replied, “Are you insane? Are you insane?”
Well, come Sunday night, poor Angel was so distraught that the supervisor on duty was required to counsel him for a full hour post-game. Remember, it’s New England, land of some long-standing NFL loyalties. Said supervisor, “Reinvent the” Wheeler…Giants fan!! Bwahahahahaha!!!
“It was the best of times; it was the worst of times” A tale of two employees….
There’s Dan who told me on Monday that he was “more upset about the Patriots losing the Super Bowls than when (his) father died.”
There’s Roger, the Cook, the Giants fan, coming to work with a different Giants jersey every day this week, hanging Giant banners in his kitchen, etc. Roger is experiencing unbridled joy. Oh…..Roger is also trying to kill me. He’s such a damn good cook, always telling you about the next cholesterol extravaganza that he’s concocting.
Well….Dan can’t take Roger’s happiness. Dan refuses to enter Roger’s kitchen, or to eat any food that Roger’s prepared. Cut off nose to spite face. I hear about this situation…LMFAO!!!
I meet yesterday with two local hockey players that are conducting a “hockey marathon” to benefit our non-profit. Both super nice guys, the first one tells me about how his son went to bed crying on Sunday night. Wait a minute!! Didn’t I write about that on Monday morning? Oh yeah…..here it is…..
I took great solace in knowing that thousands of little New England boys and girls, staying up late for the coronation of their "Perfect Patriots," went to bed in tears, their parents needing to cancel their pre-orders of "19-0."
You’re thinking I felt bad about this, right? You’re thinking that I, after a career spanning 3 decades working with children and youth, would feel guilty for having written such mean-spirited commentary, right? THINK AGAIN!! It was all I could do to suppress my smile, took great restraint not to LOL.
I did smile broadly when the lad’s father continued on, allowed that as he’s been a lifelong New England sports fan, that he’s really more comfortable in this role, that of his having his heart broken by his local teams. He was there for Ed Armbrister, Bill Buckner, 46-10, Desmond Howard, Grady Little. This decade, he went on, has been an aberration. All this winning, the local populace, sons and daughters of Cotton Mather, could never abide this success very long. This is music to my spiteful ears.
There’s more outside the workplace. I’ve been granted a respite from 3rd & 6. Perhaps this is not destined to be the Winter of My Discontent!! Two years in a row now, the wretched Patriots have their season end by giving up a TD in the game’s final minute, last year preventing them from playing for their 4th SB title, this year preventing them from winning it!! Less than 3 minutes from perfection, and it’s morphed into a season that will haunt all New Englanders for eternity.
Dick’s Irving Station down the street. Dick, the old prick who’s twice won 2-pound lobsters from me on Steelers-Patriots game. It was still late in the day on Monday that his message board read, “Pats Perfect, Beat Giants for 19-0.” Hey Dick, get your sorry ass up that ladder, change that shit!! Tuesday, the board was blank. Now it simply reads, “Happy Birthday, Dick.” Hey Dick, can you blow out the candles amid your tears!!
I read the Boston Globe every day. Their columnists are at their best when times are darkest. They pull no punches. The season’s a failure.
Talk radio, a Schadenfreude bonanza!! Caller after caller, “Well, Big O, it’s just now that I can even talk about the game. If we played those bahstahds today, the Pats would be wicked mad. We’d beat them, fifty-fo-ah to faughteen.”
Schadenfreude!! Schadenfreude!! Schadenfreude!!
I’m fond of Schadenfreude. My inseparable winter’s companion!!