By Megan Rilkoff.
– And so it begins.
Another first pitch, first tip-off, first face-off, first kickoff. Hopes (and often bets) are secured in place for another successful season. Another year, another possibility at a championship, whether it be baseball, basketball, hockey, or football: America’s pastimes. The same unwavering devotion, the same fans, the same old ragged t-shirt that brought us to victory the time before. This is how Boston fans think at the beginning of each season. Sorry if you hate us ‘cause you ain’t us.
To begin my first blog post about Boston fandom, I must pay respect and go back in time a bit. Our skill and luck (any Boston fan will attribute some luck to our AFC championship win two weekends ago) hasn’t been this prolific in a while. So I admit with humility that this current generation of Boston fans has been extremely spoiled. We have seen each major title in American professional sports come home to Boston in a shower of fireworks, beer, and a celebratory Duck boat parade – a Stanley Cup, 2 World Series, 3 Super Bowls, an NBA Championship. I remember well being able to wear a Boston Red Sox t-shirt at my strict, uniformed, Catholic middle school when the Red Sox broke the Curse of the Bambino in 2004 (Who is she?! –> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyFaLT-L2uk). The Sox was not our first, but arguably our most epic Boston win. (Two years before, we witnessed a great Super Bowl win in 2002 over the St. Louis Rams.) The ’04 World Series was not just for the current Red Sox fans, but for our parents and especially our grand-parents who had waited over 86 years for another World Series. Boston fandom is not just a fad, but a family, a history, an obsession. As I found in applying to colleges, people who are born and raised in New England tend never to leave it. I myself am a true testament to: you can take the girl out of Boston but can’t take the Bahston out of the girl.
My experience in Los Angeles – in the heart of Laker Land – has been quite interesting, to say the least. I am grateful and proud that my Boston hometown pride has grown like a flower in the concrete just a few miles away from the Staples Center. In a place where I can barely stand to go to dinner at LA Live the night of a Kobe blow-out or even a Blake Griffin Clipper’s record-breaking night (even though that is much more manageable). I have gotten over the fact that I will never find a Celtics game on cable or a Bruins game on ESPN. But thus goes the life of a New England die-hard in the center of enemy territory. You keep on speed dial those Boston and New England natives you rarely run into in LA (except at Sonny McLean’s…more to come later) in case of a game or playoff emergency.
So in brief, to catch those of you up to speed (to find those lost souls who have been drowned in the bandwagon waves of yellow Laker jerseys): the Red Sox ended their season horribly, in a way where we all welcomed the first week of football with much more eagerness and hope for redemption of our pride. The Patriots…too soon, more to come later. The Celtics have started their season pretty abysmally in comparison to our constant high hopes (we just made .500 yesterday over Cleveland), and we are just looking to playoffs as the goal and an interest in possible mid-season trades. Still high on the rush of last year’s Stanley Cup win, the optimism for another championship is still fresh as the Bruins lead the Northeast Division.
So why, Yankees, Giants, Canucks, Lakers fans (the list goes on), should you be interested in this blog about Boston fandom? Because as a wise man once said: keep your friends close, but your enemies closer.
For those of you who don’t understand the blog title: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5apEctKwiD8&noredirect=1