Friday, June 27, 2003

On Baseball and Being a Fan

Whitney thinks my recent self-imposed moratorium on Sox-related blogging is a sign of weakness and laziness. He's wrong, of course. There are plenty of other indicators of those failings in me, but this is not one of them. Rather, this is symbolic of baseball's ability to captivate true fans, dragging them along for a season-long ride like no other sport. Allow me to explain.

I like the Washington Redskins - they're my favorite NFL team. On Sundays, I'm often a foaming, ranting lunatic in front of the television. Monday through Saturday, though, I really don't think about them all that much. I'll have a handful of conversations with friends about their prospects, and about the previous or upcoming games, but I don't obsess over their fortunes. I obsess on a daily, even hourly basis about the Red Sox. For 162 games over 7 or so months, I obsess over the Red Sox. I wonder if my viewing habits affect their chances. I try alternately to follow all their games on and then to not follow anything - even the ESPN ticker - until I know the games are over. I beg, plead, cajole, whine, scream, emote, and pout while watching games. This recent non-blogging is yet another in a long line of superstitious attempts to send positive mojo in the Sox' direction.

Baseball does that to me. No other sport comes close. It is a much-encompassing, engrossing pastime - one that has me in its grip so fully that I'm willing to give up something that I enjoy to participate in the Sox winning streak, even a little.

So, to my friend with the Armando Benitez complex, I submit that my non-blogging is an act of truly significant fandom - a selfless, devout act of supplication to the baseball gods. Indeed, I enjoy the blogging and its cathartic balm, so I am, in fact, causing myself pain and suffering by not being able to express my emotions over the recent uptick in the Sox' fortunes. Armando Benitez, Armando Benitez, Armando Benitez.

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