Editor's column

"The Seattle Mariners are a huge disappointment this year to all us loser lovers, those who enjoy following losing teams because when they do win, the taste of victory is so sweet.Winning gets dull, as this year's version of the Mariners proves. As of Monday they had won 11 straight games and accumulated more victories in April and May than any baseball team in history. Safeco Field is filled to the brim each game with 45,000 fans who fully expect to win, and the Mariners seldom let them down. These fans are incapable of appreciating a good losing effort. All they'll settle for is winning and that makes the game dull, dull, dull.Sadly, this winning tendency isn't a one-season freak. The Mariners have won consistently since 1995. All this year proves is that they may never be major losers again. At least not in the foreseeable future. So us loser lovers have to look elsewhere for a suitable replacement. What we need is a team or organization that almost always loses so we can watch in anticipation, hoping they'll finally pull one out so we can all wake up and cheer. Here are some losers who might merit our support.EATTLE SEAHAWKS: We were alarmed when proven winner Mike Holmgren was hired as coach, but last year he put together an impressive losing season on the heels of a shocking conference title the year before. It takes more than one year to build a real loser, but Holmgren is on the right track. When the new Taxpayer Stadium is ready for occupancy in 2002, 60,000 of the seats may go unused for years.WASHINGTON STATE LEGISLATURE: This group lost the regular session, lost their first extra innings session, and is now embarked upon their second 30 days of extra innings. The goal is to adopt a budget before all state employees, colleges and roads disappear with their funding on June 30. If they pass a budget before then we'll consider it a win and cheer wildly for such beloved losers as Clyde Ballard, Lynn Kessler and Sid Snyder. Never heard of them? That's what makes them so beloved, like Cuff Caudill, Lenny Randal and Jim Bouton.THE U.S. MILITARY: It's been 56 years, and we're still celebrating Pearl Harbor, D-Day, and World War II in general. Why? Because that's the last time they were allowed a clear victory over anyone. Iraq, Somalia and Haiti are just as they were before we moved in. The military needs a real win so movie makers don't have to keep rehashing World War II. Let's invade Grenada again, and this time do it right. All us loser lovers will throw roses when the Grenadians hoist the white flag.There is no shortage of potential losers out there to support, but let's face it. Nobody has the potential to lose as many times as a baseball team. One year the Mariners lost 100 games in a single season. We can only pray that some day they regain their losing luster. "

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