OT: A Musing on Losing - Dave's Fantasy Football story (H/T Poe)

I thought some of you might enjoy this but didn't want to crush the open thread. For some background, I set up a league for some friends (most of whom have never played) and am now 0-3. My team includes Fitz, Andre Johnson, Vincent Jackson, CJ2K, Steven Jackson, Romo, Witten, Ryan Matthews, Torrey Smith, and Mikel LeShoure. I lost again this week by 30, as LeShoure and Torrey put up >40 points on my bench.

It's not perfect, but it jumped into my mind as soon as I woke up and looked at my team. Enjoy!

Once upon Sunday night dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary,
Over many a free agent and waiver wire of forgotten lore,
While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping,
As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door.
" 'Tis some visitor," I muttered, "tapping at my chamber door;
Only this, and nothing more."

Ah, distinctly I remember, it was in the bleak September,
And each separate dying team member wrought its ghost upon the floor.
Eagerly I wished the morrow; vainly I had sought to borrow
From my team surcease of sorrow, sorrow for the lost LeShoure,.
For the rare and radiant player whom the angels name LeShoure
Now in my lineup forevermore.

And the silken sad uncertain rustling of each purple camo curtain
Thrilled me---filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before;
So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating,
" 'Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door,
Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door.
This it is, and nothing more."

Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer,
"Sir," said I, "or madam, truly your forgiveness I implore;
But the fact is, I was napping, and so gently you came rapping,
And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door,
That I scarce was sure I heard you." Here I opened wide the door;---
Darkness there, and nothing more.

Deep into the darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing
Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortals ever dared to dream before;
But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token,
And the only word there spoken was the whispered word,
LeShoure?, This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word,
"LeShoure!" Merely this, and nothing more.

Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning,
Soon again I heard a tapping, something louder than before,
"Surely," said I, "surely, that is something at my window lattice.
Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore.
Let my heart be still a moment, and this mystery explore.
" 'Tis the wind, and nothing more."

Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter,
In there stepped a stately Raven, of the Terp-ly days of yore.
Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he;
But with mien of lord or lady, perched above my fantasy score.
Perched upon the bust that's CJ, just above my fantasy score,
Perched, and sat, and nothing more.

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling,
By the grave and stern decorum of the Nike jersey that it wore,
"Though thy crest be shorn and shaven thou," I said, "art sure no craven,
Ghastly, grim, and sophmore Raven, wandering from the Virginia shore.
Tell me what the lordly game is on Sunday Night's NFL core."
Quoth the Raven, "Never Score."

Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly,
Though its answer little meaning, little relevancy bore;
For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being
Ever yet was blessed with seeing my team put up a decent score,
Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust CJ2k has bore,
With such name as "Never Score."

But the raven, sitting lonely on that placid bust, spoke only
26 points, as if his soul in that one score he did outpour.
Nothing further then he uttered; not a feather then he fluttered;
Till I scarcely more than muttered, "Other friends have won before;
On the morrow he will leave me, as my hopes have flown before."
Then the bird said, "Never Score."

Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken,
"Doubtless," said I, "what it utters is its only stock and store,
Caught from some unhappy master, whom unmerciful disaster
Followed fast and followed faster, till his drafts one burden bore,---
Till the dirges of his hope that melancholy burden bore
Of "Never---never score."

But the Raven still beguiling all my sad soul into smiling,
Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird, and bust and door;
Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking
Fantasy unto fantasy, thinking what this ominous bird of Baltimore --
What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt and ominous bird of Baltimore
Meant in croaking "Never Score."

Thus I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing
To the fowl, whose fiery eyes now burned into my bench's core;
This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining
On the cushion's velvet lining that the lamplight gloated o'er,
But whose velvet violet camo lining with the lamplight gloating o'er
My team shall impress, ah, nevermore!

Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer
Swung by seraphim whose footballs tinkled on the tufted floor.
"Wretch," I cried, "thy God hath lent thee -- by these angels he hath
Sent thee respite---respite and nepenthe from thy memories of LeShoure!
Quaff, O quaff this kind nepenthe, and forget this lost LeShoure!"
Quoth the Raven, "Never Score!"

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil!--prophet still, if bird or devil!
Whether tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore,
Desolate, yet all undaunted, on this desert team enchanted--
On this team by horror haunted--tell me truly, I implore:
Are there--are there wins upon my bench?--tell me--tell me I implore!"
Quoth the raven, "Never Score."

"Prophet!" said I, "thing of evil--prophet still, if bird or devil!
By heaven that bends above us--by that Goodell we both adore--
Tell this soul with sorrow laden, if, within the distant haven,
It shall clasp a Detroit maven, whom the angels name LeShoure---
Claim a rare and radiant free agent, whom the angels name LeShoure?
Quoth the raven, "Never Score."

"Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!" I shrieked, upstarting--
"Get thee back onto the bench and Sunday Night's substandard score!
Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken!
Leave my losing streak unbroken! -- quit like bust Chris Johnson before!
Take thy beak from out my heart, you took thy TDs from my score!"
Quoth the raven, "Never Score."

And the Raven, never flitting, still is scoring, still is sitting
On the pallid bench of fantasy just above my team's week four;
And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming.
And the lamplight o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor;
And my team from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor
Shall be lifted---nevermore!

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