Tag Archives: boston culture

Bobbled

“A .300 hitter, that rarest of breeds these days, goes through life with the certainty that he will fail at his job seven out of ten times.”

-Ted Williams

As you may be aware, I’ve been immersing myself in baseball in an attempt to fit in more into Boston culture. I’ve read about the successes and failures of teams throughout the decades. I’ve watched clips of Bill Buckner’s error and read about Merkle’s Boner (that’s a term that has not aged well). A friend of mine has warned me about following the Red Sox. He speaks of the collapse last September like other people talk about the exact moment they realized their marriage had failed or when they heard about JFK being¬†assassinated. He told me that it would be hard being a Red Sox fan.

I’ll be honest: I laughed at him. After all, I was well aware of the pain and suffering of the average Sox fan. They’ve bobbled away the World Series. They’ve failed, time and again, when it mattered the most. They’ve lost, even when they’ve had the best men in the league on their team. I know all of this and I thought I could handle any loss or losing streak with the knowledge that baseball, like all things, moves in cycles. Even if they’re not on top this year, there’s always next year. Even if they’re in a slump NOW, there’s always next game. There are 160 games in a season. Losing one game is no big deal, not really.

I was wrong.

I’ve been enraged (See The Vernacular of Sports). I’ve been depressed. I’ve screamed at the radio. I’ve curled into a little ball on the floor and cried softly. Six games in and they’ve won exactly one.

There is, as I think I’ve mentioned before, a big difference between reading about the Red Sox and following them as a fan. And I don’t even have the burned-out, jaded cynical perspective to protect me. I go into each game with the cheerful, freckle-faced innocence of a young babe, assuming that this time it’ll be all right.

And you know what? They WILL be.

They’re in a slump. A small slump. They’ll get it together. It’s (unfortunately) like last year. They just need to get warmed up and then they’re going to unleash Hell.

Go Red Sox!

Dylan Charles

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Filed under Sporting: Baseball, Boxing and Sports Not Starting with a B

A Sporting Attempt

Living in Boston means living with sports. In Durham, sports talk was mainly limited to people yelling about college basketball, because that was the biggest game in town. Sure, we had the Durham Bulls, but they don’t inspire the same level of fanaticism as, say, the Patriots, Red Sox, Celtics or Bruins. There are four major sports franchises crammed into this one city and lord, does it show.

I’ve long resisted any attempt to become involved in the sports culture, but more and more, that seems like ignoring a large and integral part of Boston culture. People communicate in sports, it’s what they talk about, how they interact, a reason to go out for the night and watch a game in the bar.

So, in the interest of embedding myself in the culture, I’m going to “follow” a “team”. Since football season is almost over and basketball season has already started, I picked baseball. Plus, I’ll get the thrill of following the under-dog team, just like the Bad News Bears or Rocky. And I’ve always been interested in the mythology behind baseball.

First up, I need to read up on stats and line-ups and…other…stuff. Maybe I should watch Ken Burns’ Baseball in order to truly learn about the sport from the very beginning. The more I think about this whole process, the more I realize that I know next to nothing about baseball. I know it starts in the Spring. Maybe. Maybe that’s just when they start training.

The last time I even watched a baseball game was a Durham Bulls game almost five years ago. I know there are bats and balls and bases and n ine innings, but other than that, I’m as lost as a linebacker in a hockey rink.

Time to get started.

Dylan Charles

5 Comments

Filed under Sporting: Baseball, Boxing and Sports Not Starting with a B