A recent phone conversation between a Cleveland sportswriter and sports talk show host went something like this:
Sportswriter: "I can't listen to sports talk in this city anymore. It's driving me nuts."
Sportwriter: "All they talk about at both sports talk stations is the Browns. Day after day. Hour after hour. The draft. The quarterback situation. It's like the Indians and Cavaliers don't exist."
Host: "I know. I have to turn it off myself. I don't know how they can bring themselves to talk about nothing but the Browns every day."
Sportswriter: "So why do they do it? Maybe if they talked about the Indians more it would elicit a greater response."
The host explained. He said when they talk about the Browns, the phone lines "light up like a Christmas tree." When they talk about the Indians? Crickets. He called it "inexplicable."
Indeed. The 2013 Indians win 92 games, make the playoffs and finish 28th in MLB attendance. Fans are still mad at the owners for trading Cliff Lee and C.C. Sabathia. The Browns annually win four or five games and have one of the worst draft records in NFL history. Yet fans remain passionate, loyal and optimistic.
Like the popularity of The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, there is no satisfactory explanation.