The talking heads on ESPN will tell you the “perfect” bracket is out there.
On TV and across the internet, the mainstream media gladly flaunts these unattainable brackets with their flawless Final 4’s. All the while, society falsely believes this is how every bracket should be. And it leaves the rest of us with major insecurities.
Of course I always wanted that perfect bracket. Who didn’t? I figured if I put in some time in the gym watching games and consumed a steady diet of bracketology, I would be the one correctly picking the 12-5 upset or putting Xavier in my Sweet 16.
But let’s be real, most people (myself included) don’t have the time to spend five hours a day working on our brackets.
Quickly, my unhealthy obsession made me miserable. I was completely and utterly bracket conscious.
When I looked at my bracket I only saw that I had no teams remaining in the South region. And I squirmed every time I caught a glimpse of Louisville in my Final Four. I compared my bracket to everyone’s around me, feeling as if it didn’t measure up.
To make matters worse, I posted a picture of my bracket on Instagram, and it didn’t take long for the trolls to call it “busted.”
A few days ago, I was out having drinks with a friend when they told me how jealous they were of my bracket. They told me they’d kill to have picked Purdue over Iowa State. Shockingly surprised, I realized they were right. I should be proud of that pick and my bracket.
So here’s the big secret that the big media marketing companies don’t want you to know: The. Perfect. Bracket. Does. Not. Exist.
It’s not out there. It can’t be obtained — no matter how hard you try.
That’s why I’m encouraging everyone to follow my lead and embrace the blemishes of your bracket. Don’t be shy about what makes your bracket unique, even if it’s not what you see in magazines.
You’re in last place of your bracket pool? Big deal. You had Villanova winning it all? So what. That’s your bracket and you shouldn’t let anyone tell you it’s not beautiful.
It’s time for society to change its bracket standards.
Because every bracket is a perfect bracket in its own right.