By David Tepera, July 5, 2017
We are all familiar with the word “underdog.” The term originated in the late 19th century when dog fighting was popularized. The losing dog would end up on the bottom, and of course, the winning dog would end on top. Note the term “top dog.” Just know, I do not condone dog fighting and have a strong compassion for all animals.
Recently, I was having a great discussion with a friend of mine about underdogs in different sports and reasons why people root for them. During the discussion, my friend made the comment, “But aren’t we all underdogs?”
How true is that? In every area of our lives, we were once, or are still currently, the underdog. We typically start at the bottom and battle our way up. Every succession accomplished was competing against someone who might have been more skilled.
We’ve all been bullied in school, bullied at work, pushed around in the neighborhood, taken advantage of or not respected at home. This is part of society that’s frustrating, which prompts us to cheer for the underdogs.
Why do you think Sylvester Stalone became a rich and popular man from all the Rocky movies? Because we all want to beat the top dog and punch out the bully.
For all you old fogies like me, a cartoon called “Underdog” ran from 1964 to 1973. It was about a shoeshine boy’s alter ego that would appear when his love interest Sweet Polly Purebread was being victimized by villains. Underdog was an actual dog that wore a cape and had powers.
When Underdog would appear to win the battle, he would yell, “There’s no need to fear, Underdog is here!” Of course, all us little kids used that battle cry in every sandlot game.
Just know, we all have Underdog within us. Sometimes you’ll need to pull out your superpowers and stand up for yourself. If people can’t respect you for all your hard work and kindness, let them know and eliminate them from your social circle.
Next time you’re in a demanding situation, look them straight in the eye and yell, “There is no need to fear, Underdog is here!” I promise, they’ll run away because they’ll think you went bananas.