|Yesterday I was sick. So sick that I couldn't come to work. Sick. Cough. So I went to Yankee Stadium with my friends Jeff and Becky, drank beer, ate hot-dogs, sat in the sunshine playing hooky on the first truly beautiful day of the spring, exchanged pleasantries with Yankees fans and watched the good guys come from behind to win the game, getting to Mariano Rivera (now let's see: who's WHOSE daddy, exactly?) in the ninth for the fourth straight time to salvage a short split out of a three game set. Daygames are one of life's pure pleasures and I encourage you to call in sick sometime in the next few weeks and catch your local nine. Tell your boss I said it was OK.
As always there was a strong contingent of Sox fans at the stadium stronger than normal even, but, as always, the Yankees fans were an overwhelming force. It is their stadium after all, but the Yankees fans seem to ALWAYS be an overwhelming force. Woob and I saw a couple of Yankees/Orioles games a few years back and there were more Yankees fans than Birds fans, no fooling.
It was fun at the game going back and forth with the Yankees fans. In the ninth, when the Sox had the game pretty well in hand there was a "Red sox suck!" cheer going around, so I started hollering "Scoooooooooorebooooooooard" (meaning, 'gee, we suck? we're winning the game') and then the guys behind us started yelling "Staaaaaandiiiiiings" (meaning, 'what ever. you're winning the game, we're winning the season'). I couldn't think of a glib way to say "well, it's third game of the season, you're 2-1, we're 1-2. I don't think you are all that firmly in first place", but I couldn't so I just chanted "year two thou sand" for a moment. I think they had a hard time trying to work up a quick chant that said "yes, you guys got us last year, and yes, it has been since 2000 that we have won the world series, but really the Yankees have won so many times and you've just won ONCE in the past 86 years, so shut up", so instead the whole back and forth thing jst stopped. Just as well, I was out of bullets, and my throat was sore. It's tough.
Funny, last year during the ALCS I was riding my bike and some guy on the corner as I was waiting for the light pointed at my Red Sox hat and, making a brushing gesture said, "You've got something on your hat", I pointed at it with my middle finger and said, "where, up here?"
Also, last year during the ALCS I was in Times Square going to the movies and some guy pointed at my Sox hat (a guy I believe to be a tourist: shorts, sandles, business haircut, turquoise polo shirt, family in tow, exiting the Coldstone Creamery laden with shopping bags) and said "No! You can't wear that here!". I replied, less snottily than it might sound, "Yes I can. I *live* here". But of course I don't. Not in Times Square, anyway.
Yesterday, after the game, I met Erin at work on the Upper West Side and as we were walking down to the subway some fellow in a Yankees hat and Mariano Rivera shirt passing by yelled "Red Sox Suck!" at me. It happened too fast for me to think of anything clever so I went with "Not today they don't" which is OK, and true, but maybe not as glib as I'd like, and a bit too easy to take as meaning "but every other day they do". He mumbled something I didn't catch, trying to figure out how to respond cleverly and venomously as he got farther away but he couldn't come up with anything. It's tough to do when you are taken off guard. I'm sure he's thought of something great by now, as have I, but the chances we'll meet again are very slim.
If, as a Red Sox fan, you were to get beat up by Yankees fans, would you be protected by hate-crime legislation? Not that I am concerned, really at all. It's all good natured, and I'd never start anything with anyone. I'm a lover not a fighter.
Anyway, I took a few consecutive shot panoramas yesterday, and maybe you'd like to take a look at them. Yankee Stadium.