May 20, 2011

7 Jun

It’s practically summer, and there is a huge hole in my life. Honestly, there are many huge holes in my life, but the one of which I am currently speaking is of course baseball. I don’t have television, and my internet is too spotty to stream games. I keep up with a couple of baseball blogs and check in on the MLB website at least once a day. I keep up with my Mariner’s the best I can, and they are doing FABULOUS if I do say so myself. But somehow, in the supposed “Capitol of Baseball,” I have yet to meet any real baseball fans. I’ve met plenty of fair-weather Yankees fans who seem to wear the hat more as an homage to Jay-Z then to Lou Gehrig. In Seattle, I used to go to the bar Al’s by my apartment, grab a beer, and talk Mariner’s with random strangers. I feel like most everyone followed the team at least somewhat and was ready for a discussion about whether Ichiro is overpaid or if Vargas really has the potential to be an ace. In New York, I just haven’t found that.

So I signed up for an online Mets fans group. This day was the first event I had RSVPed for, and I didn’t want to go. I had worked almost 50 hours at work that week, had a nasty cough, and was just kind of feeling down about life. I figured I would go for an hour or so, just to say I at least was doing something with my Friday.

I walked up to a table of 10-12 men ranging from my age to middle age, they looked at me skeptically, then welcomed me with open arms. I ordered a beer, and we all started chatting. I felt so comfortable, so at home, and everyone was so nice. It felt like an instant family. They all had those heavy Long Island accents and said amazing things about baseball and New York. They asked me if I was uncomfortable being the only girl there. I took a swig of my beer and laughed. Not at all! In fact, I felt completely comfortable. Most of the friends I’ve made in the city are female, and while great people, they just never seem to get me. I’ve always felt most comfortable with the boys.

They asked me how long I’d been a Mets fan, and I told them the honest truth.

“At heart, I’m actually a Mariners fan, but I really just wanted to meet a community of baseball fans.”
They all smiled and nodded politely.
“And so help me God, I would never cheer for the Yankees.”
“Yeah!” they all hollered, raising their glasses to me. That’s all I had to say, and I was in.

I had a blast with this group of strangers. Drinking, laughing, talking baseball, mocking the two Yankees fans at the next table. They were your average Midtown girls, blonde, heavy makeup, black power suits, probably work in Marketing or PR.
“Oh, Yankees fans,” the flamboyantly gay business man next to be said. “They’re just so vanilla.”
“What does that make us?” I asked.
“Honey, we’re rocky road.”

Indeed we are.


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