Let’s talk about league punishments. Whether your league makes someone eat 20 waffles in an hour or get a tattoo, this is more than just making fun of someone that lost. In fact, a fantasy punishment is an integral piece to a strong, tight-knit league. It's arguably more important than the trophy.
For a Fantasy Punishment It's The Beauty in The Pain
There is something poetic about a fantasy league punishment. A beautiful nightmare.
A punishment is a collective agreement amongst friends. More than that, a punishment is a gamble on yourself. You are taking on a bet, against all odds, that you are better than your friends. And not all of your friends; you just have to be better than one.
We Are Stronger Together
Leagues spend their offseasons taking the time and effort required to research the right penalty. Some may be harsher than others. However, once the punishments are proposed and put up for a vote, the fate must be accepted.
Your league is a unit. It is only as strong as its weakest link. The weakest link - the loser - strengthens the league when they complete their punishment. While this role may seem embarrassing, it is integral to bringing everyone together.
Humiliation is the glue that holds the chaos in place. Don’t believe me? Watch a league fall apart after someone bails on their fantasy punishment.
A Fantasy Punishment is An Act of Loyalty
What makes a fantasy punishment truly poetic is the finale: the act of being punished. The act of fulfilling your fantasy league’s punishment is a sign of faith, loyalty, and acceptance to your entire crew.
Only one of every twelve gets the privilege to prove themselves to their league mates in such a fashion. I, personally, don’t take this responsibility lightly. Sure, I have never finished last or had the opportunity to fulfill a punishment, but I have committed myself to do so if the time ever comes.
The Unfulfilled is Unfulfilling
When someone does not pay up on their punishment, cracks form in the foundation. Fingers begin to point. Emotions begin to boil. “Why hasn’t Cody done his punishment yet?” Everyone quickly begins to wonder why they would risk themselves for punishment against a peer unwilling to do the same for them. Then, the big questions begin to roll in…
What if they don’t do it?
@joncreech1 didn’t go to Waffle House for the 24 hours he was supposed to— fantasypollster (@FFpolltsunami) January 27, 2022
Now, let’s talk about cowards. When your time comes, if you do not complete your punishment, you are a coward. Why did you agree to film yourself singing a Whitney Houston ballad acapella if you did not intend to do so? Why did you commit to doing a 5-minute stand-up routine at a local bar if you are too scared to?
Think of your league. Is nothing sacred anymore?
Sure, some will claim this is the fault of their commissioner for not enforcing the penalty. But let’s not give the loser such an easy scapegoat. Do you really expect your commissioner to physically drag your buddy out to get his belly button pierced? No.
The loser should pay the price, and do so WILLINGLY. After all, if you cannot keep your word, I’m not sure we can keep your spot in the league next year.
Is someone in your league not following through with their fantasy punishment? Follow Cooterdoodle on Twitter and I'll make sure to call them out!