I didn't let myself believe it was actually a possibility to take it all the way until the last pitch was thrown last night. Sure, I hoped. Sure, I had faith. But I didn't let my mind conceive of the eventual winning moment. I thought it would jinx us by doing so.
I know some people think it's all a stupid joke, this baseball madness. But I, for one, dig watching a group of people (in this case, men) pull together and perform amazing feats of athleticism, endurance, and skill. I love baseball and think I always did, although I admit during the times when I lived abroad I didn't give it much thought. Baseball is the best Reality Show happening on TV. Drugs, injuries, fights, breakups and reconcilliations, winners and losers... baseball is so much more than a bunch of guys standing around a grassy field waiting for an occasional burst of action. Plus, we must consider the baseball food of choice: hotdogs. Who can deny the pleasure of a loaded Fenway Frank? No other hotdog tastes as yummy.
Who do you love more? The self-proclaimed Idiots of the 2004 championship or this, as described by Jason Veritek last night, Band of Brothers? There are shining moments of each, for certain. This team does seem more polished, more skillful, and certainly wears more expectation on their shoulders. I adore Mike "Mr. Double" Lowell and hope that Theo and the management keep him on the team and, for the love of all that is good in this world, DO NOT take the ripe apple recently fallen from the Yankee Tree, Alex Rodriquez. A-Rod would mess up a very well developed chemical balance that this team has achieved. I am so pleased they named Lowell the series MVP. Unexpected, for sure, but well deserved and timely, as mid-game A-Rod's defection from the Empire was announced on National TV in the middle of the freaking World Series. Coincidence? I think A-ROD wanted all in Red Sox Nation to know he is "available".
I also loved that late last night, after the closing credits and the parting shots of champagne drenched Sox players, the first commercial of the break featured Derek Jeter hawking his perfume called "Driven". It just struck me as funny.
This year's celebration for me is much different than 2004's, that's for sure. In '04 I lived in the heart of the action, Boston's Back Bay. After the final out, I ran outside, camera in hand, and was immediately sucked into the lifeforce of Victory. Sure, most the revelers were BC and BU students who probably never watched a Sox game before their freshman year, but who cares? The energy in the streets was exciting.
This year, now living in New York, in my Long Island outpost, my sleeping sweetheart (who calls himself a Yankees fan) snored quietly as we clinched the title. I sat in my PJs and sent and received excited text messages from friends and family who also count themselves as members of Red Sox Nation. For the first time since moving to NY, I really really wished I was there, back in my Boston neighborhood. Even just for that moment, to experience the win with other fans, as excited as I was.
How many days until Spring Training?