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Why Haven't You Quit The Oilers?

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Sunk cost or no, why do you keep on rooting?

Derek Leung

I've become immersed the world of podcasts recently.  Every other form of broadcast media is formulaic and stale.  Podcasts, on the other hand, are incredibly varied in subject and delivery in general and, depending on the show incredibly varied in content from week to week.  One of my favorites is the Freakonomics Podcast, hosted by Stephen Dubner.  One of his recent shows was on the upside of quitting, a rebroadcast of what he called one of their most popular shows ever:

The Upside of Quitting: A Freakonomics Radio Rebroadcast

You know the saying "a winner never quits, and a quitter never wins." To which Freakonomics Radio says … Are you sure? Sometimes quitting is strategic, and sometimes it can be your best possible plan. To help us understand quitting, we look at a couple of key economic concepts in this episode: sunk costs and opportunity costs.

It got me to thinking, specifically about the Oilers and their fans.  It's been 8 years since the franchise delivered any kind of payback to the fans, but interest in the team hasn't declined.  Why?  Why do fans continue to invest so much energy, emotion and especially time, time that could be spent on other productive, wildly more productive things in following the Edmonton Oilers?

More specifically, why do you, dear reader, continue?  Aren't there other, more fulfilling things you could be doing with your time and your life, rather than following the worst team in pro sports?  Why haven't you quit?