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Sounders vs. New England - Aftermatch Aftermath: The Tinkerbell Fallacy

Following the Seattle Sounders 2-1 loss this past Saturday to New England Revolution, over the last 34 MLS games, the Sounders are 12-17-5 for 41 points and a -5 Goal Differential. Are the Sounders we know and love dead? Can they be revived?

I agree, Zach Scott, it's hard to watch.
I agree, Zach Scott, it's hard to watch.
Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

There we stood, dumbfounded and transfixed; the Seattle Sounders lost again. Another dubious call, another uninspired loss, and we're reeling. The Sounders we knew are dying, their existence becoming a fading memory; falling sand slipping through the cracks between our fingers.

They tell us that if we believe in the Sounders enough that they can survive, "Clap for us. Otherwise we'll die." So we clap. "Clap harder," they urge, and we clap harder. "Harder," they shout over the rising din of our applause. "Harder!" they shout, again and again, all the while our claps are the loudest we've ever clapped, our hands themselves shouting in pain, our bones broken under the ferocity of our clapping, our skin raw, bleeding, as we clap for the survival of our team. We're trying. We're clapping. We want the Sounders to survive.

Yet the Sounders still died. "Thanks for nothing," they said. "You killed us because you didn't clap hard enough." We look at our hands, if they can be called that anymore, and when looking at our hands we see our failure. The Sounders died and we did nothing but clap along.

This overlooks the question of why the Sounders died. In 2009, Seattle took MLS by storm. They utilized a player and scheme combination that found success early and often. Yet as Fight Club so astutely put it, on a long enough timeline, the survival rate is zero. Our solar system won't cease to exist in a blink of an eye; normality one moment replaced by nonexistence. Instead it'll be slow with subtle changes that we'll deny and overlook until our reality has been replaced with a much bleaker one. The Sounders aren't suffering their own heat death, but they are being supplanted by newer teams with different player and scheme combinations.

In the romanticized versions of Peter Pan, the titular character leads a group of children called The Lost Boys. Together they fight one battle against the pirates in Neverland, led by Captain Hook. However, in the original book, Pan and the Lost Boys fight two battles: again the pirates in Neverland, but also time. The second fight against time is a fight against themselves, both in the abstract and in the tangible.

You see, Peter Pan hates growing older, which is why he'll never do it. More than that, however, is that Peter Pan hates growing older so much that if he sees you doing it, he'll kill you. As time progresses and his Lost Boys age out, he'll kill them if they can so they can never grow old; he'll "thin the herd" of his friends and companions. Those that survive purportedly become the Pirates that Peter Pan has sworn to destroy.

We used to be a Lost Boy: fresh and new, full of energy and new ideas. But time made us age; Time brought along newer Lost Boys to take our place, and now Peter Pan is here to kill us.

That leaves the Sounders with two options: they can accept their fate in death, clapping all the while, or they can fight back against the establishment that seeks to render them obsolete. Afterall, it's not the clapping that will help the Sounders to survive; it's belief.

Second GIF to the right, straight on 'til morning.

Game time against a beatable New England Revolution squad.

Aaron Kovar scored a goal!!

I love me some early goals on the road.

It's hard not to feel good for Kovar.

I'm liking this start we have. I hope it lasts.

So are the Sounders just sitting back and allowing the Revolution to have wave after wave of attack?

Wait, he seriously called that a penalty?

Seriously? That? A penalty?


I can't imagine what Chad Marshall is thinking.

At least our defense looks solid-ish today.

We might escape with a point. Or even a win.

No. Nope. Not after that goal.

Okay, that goal, that was a failure on so many parts.

That point slipped away, like tears in rain.

The Sounders didn't put New England away and it came back to get us.

I don't even know what to think of this team right now.

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