To be a Red Sox fan is to be a dreamer (a story written in 2005)

I’ve been a life-long Red Sox fan and I’ve lived a long life. I was 14 when the Sox last won the World Series. Everyone in Boston was euphoric. In fact, people all over the nation had been rooting for the team from Beantown. But it’s so long ago now, I hardly remember what really happened and what were the stories we told ourselves afterwards. Now that I’ve reached the nice round figure of 100, there are very few of my friends left to compare stories with.

And those that soldier on are so hard of hearing it’s hard to talk to them by phone to the different nursing homes where we live. And don’t believe anyone younger than 95 who says they saw the victory. Ah, but who would have predicted that it would be another 86 years before the Sox won again?
Life was certainly different in those days—Simpler, slower, and less expensive. It was easy to get tickets during the season and you even had some chance of getting a ticket for the championship games. Nowadays, you have to have a special relationship with someone from the major networks. But back then you couldn’t experience the game from your home the way the networks now make possible. The places they have cameras these days you’re almost able to feel like you are in the pitcher’s head—especially when a nurse puts my headset on for me. In fact, I have to admit I can’t really remember the days before 3D TV. That must have come in after the 2004 series, but I’m not sure….
I woke from my dream and realized it wasn’t really the year 2090. After a while, I managed to get back to sleep, only to dream that pinch-runner Dave Roberts wasn’t caught out stealing second in game 4 at the bottom of the 9th. In my dream, instead of the Yankees sweeping the ACLS, the Sox miraculously came back to win the last four games and then swept St. Louis.

When morning came and reality seeped in I realized that to be a Red Sox fan is to be a dreamer. Oh well, there’s always next year.
——
(May 2005 contribution to Sox News for Kids, a baseball magazine edited by a teenager I knew.)

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About Peter J. Taylor
Peter Taylor is a Professor at the University of Massachusetts Boston where he teaches and directs undergraduate and graduate programs on critical thinking, reflective practice, and science-in-society. His research and writing focuses on the complexity of environmental and health sciences in their social context, incl. Unruly Complexity: Ecology, Interpretation, Engagement (U. Chicago Press, 2005) and Nature-nurture? No (2014, http://bit.ly/NNN2014). On reflective practice, see Taking Yourself Seriously: Processes of Research & Engagement (with J. Szteiter, 2012, http://bit.ly/TYS2012).

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