The American Heart Association reports that the rate of heart disease has dropped 30 percent since 1999. That's fantastic news, but as a Chicagoan, it's hard to believe that. After what our sports teams have been doing to us, I would expect that more people are headed to local emergency rooms, not less.
It started in baseball season. The White Sox needed an extra game to get into the playoffs, keeping their fans on the edge of their seats until the very end, and then disappointing them by losing in the first round. The Cubs cut out the suspense factor by clinching early, but they then broke fans' hearts by getting swept out of the playoffs.
The Blackhawks have continued this trend, with 11 games that have needed extra time, including 7 overtime losses. Only the Tampa Bay Lightning have more than Chicago. The Bulls have been kinder, with only three overtime games and a record of 1-2.
Of course, the crown jewel of the teams that require cardiac units to be on standby are our Bears. The past two games alone are enough of a reason for Chicagoans to think about eating properly and exercising regularly. With the playoffs on the line, both games have ended in overtime with a Robbie Gould field goal to seal the win. Before those field goals, the Bears have played poorly enough to enrage the most stoic of tempers. Before Alex Brown saved the game and season with a field goal block, it was tough to watch without some stress.
Next Sunday is guaranteed to be just as stressful. While the Bears play the Texans, the Vikings will play the Giants, and we will need a Bears win and a Viking loss to make the playoffs. Fans, take heart, and try a bran muffin instead of bacon for breakfast. Do what you can to keep your health because the Bears are likely to endanger it.