Monday, June 16, 2003

Games 65 - 67 - Red Sox

Red Sox 4, Houston Astros 3
Red Sox 8, Astros 4
Red Sox 3, Astros 2 (14)
Record: 39-28

It strikes me that I may have paid less attention to this series than to any other played this season. I attended parties on Friday and Saturday, and spent Sunday afternoon playing golf and watching the U.S. Open. (There were some serious allergens floating around my living room when Jim Furyk gathered his family on the green after he won the championship.) As an intensely superstitious sports fan, I can't help but wonder if my inattention had a direct impact on the Sox' sweep of a solid Astros squad. If a butterfly flaps his wings in Borneo, a hurricane in the South Atlantic changes direction, and all that - well, why can't that be amended to consider the impact of one lunatic fan ignoring his team? I'm just saying.

And if that's true, then I'm facing a bit of a conundrum, no? Can I really ignore the Sox for any extended period of time? Would I be willing to do so, if it meant a winning streak? What's the fun in the Sox winning if I can't enjoy it? I suppose I would be more well-adjusted if I could ignore the siren song of the ESPN Bottom Line. I could read all those classics that I've been meaning to get through if I wasn't obsessing over the bullpen's woes. Maybe I'd finally get that drywall painted if I could give up on analyzing Nomar's recent hot streak, or worrying about whether Trot Nixon will ever hit lefties. I could pay more attention to my wife and daughter if Manny's ever-changing hairstyles weren't top of mind. But would I be happy?

My dad professes not to follow the Sox with the vigor of his younger days, but I think he's lying. He's built a protective shell after 56 years of unrequited fandom, which allows him be roll with the punches better than I can, but he cares - I can tell. He may not obsess like I do, but when Johnny Damon squeezes the final out of the World Series in October, Dad's going to answer the phone on the first ring when I call him at midnight.

Ignore the Sox? In the midst of a three-game winning streak with Pedro on the hill tonight? I'd rather pound my scrotum repeatedly with a ballpeen hammer.

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