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Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Losers and Underdogs

Loser: A person with a record of failing; someone who loses consistently (WordWeb Pro). : a person who is incompetent or unable to succeed; also : something doomed to fail or disappoint (Merriam-Webster)

Underdog: One at a disadvantage and expected to lose (WordWeb Pro); a victim of injustice or persecution (Merriam-Webster)

In a way an “underdog” would seem to have much in common with a “loser.” But as soon as this assertion is made, we sense a vast difference between them. The concept of loser carries with it the idea that the person in question is CERTAIN to NEVER win—that is, he is destined and doomed to failure. On the other hand, an “underdog” could well win if given a fighting chance. The underdog shows courage, initiative, and discipline while the loser lacks these qualities. The self-concept of a loser is typically negative and poor. The underdog has great spirit and confidence. In the end we come to feel that the loser DESERVES to lose, while the underdog DESERVES to win ( is only just...) and will win provided we give him sufficient encouragement.

I think the above is generally true. A major exception is Wile E Coyote—the loser who always wins our hearts.

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