Tuesday, May 20, 2008

i heart the red sox

in honor of jon lester's no-hitter last night at fenway...

i have been a red sox fanatic, a freaky, obsessed, neurotic, superstitious die-hard member of sox nation since...well...since birth. i went to my first game at fenway park when i was in the womb and according to my mom, that night i was kicking like crazy. those cute little infant sox uniforms and ball caps were not part of the marketing strategy back in the dark ages, but if they had been, i'm certain i would have been decked out in full garb for my very first baby photo. i learned the sox players' names around the same time i learned the alphabet, and my dad would ask me to reel off the sox starting line-up in front of family and friends. i would do it flawlessly--at the age of four. If I had sat down at a piano and pounded out Beethoven's Für Elise, he wouldn't have been beamed any prouder.

Watching the Sox creep ever close to winning a world series and then blowing it in crushing, heartwrenching fashion has been a Huntress family tradition. I remember Carlton Fisk's home run against Cincinatti in '75 with the same kind of joy that most people remember the birth of their grandchildren. (as an aside, when fisk was traded to the chicago white sox in 1980, i was so upset i cried for a week...not the first time, or the last, that my beloved Sox would cause me to shed a few tears). I remember exactly where I was, what i was wearing, what i was EATING, when the ball went through Buckner's legs in '86, in the same way people remember what they were doing when Kennedy was shot...and while it would simply be wrong and awful to compare those two events, let's just say that my gutteral reaction may have been very, very similar too.

When the Sox finally won it in 2004, I called my dad and stayed on the phone with him throughout the ninth inning, because I wanted to hear his voice when the curse was broken. When Foulke tossed that ground ball to first and Joe Castigliani yelled "CAN YOU BELIEVE IT" on the radio, my dad and i just started screaming and laughing and crying over the phone...it was a spectacular moment.

Every morning I walked into the hospital room at Maine Med to visit my mom last week, this is exactly how our first conversation would go...

morning mom...how are you feeling today?

i'm doing okay darl. did the sox win last night??

the woman has her priorities straight, no doubt about it.

ps: the sox were on a bit of losing streak during my mom's extended stay in the hospital. she's convinced they were just too worried about her and couldn't concentrate on playing well.

it should be noted that they haven't lost since she returned home.


i think not.

1 comment:

Dawn on MDI said...

Oh, god. the disappointment of a Red Sox fan plunges to depths only Cubs fans can understand. And even then, they never get as close as we did all those times. In 2004, I was working at a local weekly newspaper and penned a cool thing as the Sox inched game by painful, excruciating game toward the World Series. I'll dig around and see if I can find it. I think you'd like it.