Friday, April 17, 2009

ON SPORTS ~ College Ball - Part I...


College Ball, Part I:

where previously Molly was distracted momentarily from baseball in CT by high school and the cute football players

When it came time to deal with the whole stressful process of deciding where to go to college, the type of sports region the school was located in was not on my radar screen. I’m not real sure exactly WHAT was on the radar screen come to think of it. I started off looking at small schools and determined that I really didn’t like the idea of moving from one small school environment where everybody knew everybody else’s business to a college version of the exact same thing. So, with the guidance of my Dad, I turned my search toward the universities. AH – here I could lose myself - I mean literally lose myself. No one needed to know anything about me except what I chose to divulge. So I went from visiting tiny schools in rural areas to applying to major universities up and down the East Coast. Boston Universiy was the only one that accepted me in my requested major with on campus housing.

So we loaded up the car and got me moved in to Beantown. I went for the academic opportunities, the challenge of a big city, the separation from living at home, and the new friends I could meet, along with a few old friends also living as students in Boston. I experienced all of those things. I loved the experience so much it is the reason I chose Boston as my adult home. My move here at the age of 18 to begin my college career was the first move I made that I had any say in whatsoever. One thing I didn’t count on was the utterly complete impact baseball had on me as soon as I stepped foot in Boston.

My dorm was located in an old brownstone within two blocks of Kenmore Square – which is one block away from Fenway Park, home of the Red Sox. I quickly learned that if I was watching the Sox game on our tiny black & white TV set in our room and a Sox player hit a home run, I could turn the volume down on the TV and hear through our window the fans at the park cheer and rave from Fenway. That was like the first reality TV to me. And very interactive for that matter. This was absolutely the coolest thing I experienced.

This Freshman guy I met in the dorm – damned if I don’t remember his name now – came to me and said that his Aunt had season tickets to the Sox and she couldn’t use them for that night’s game. He asked if I wanted to go. Well – of course I said sure! Seemed like a fun, new, and exciting thing to do my first week in the city. So we went out for dinner for a quick bite in Kenmore Square first. I was getting a bit anxious since it seemed the game was about to start and we were still chatting while waiting for our check. When we finally got out of there and made the short walk over the MA Pike to the gates of Fenway I had a déjà vu.

Here I was walking up another ramp into a ballpark and it hit me like a ton of bricks! OHHHH! OHHHH! WOW!!!! Perhaps it was because I hadn’t made such an entrance in a very long time. Perhaps it was because it was a perfectly clear and beautiful New England September evening. Perhaps it was because it was the first event I had attended in my new home. Perhaps it was that his Aunt’s seats were right along the First Baseline. Perhaps it was because it was Fenway Park, and I had never seen such a beautiful sight. Groundskeeper Joe Mooney’s ball field was meticulously groomed and shining under the floodlights.

I had never ever been so close to the action – no need for binoculars here. And Mike Greenwell hit for the CYCLE in the first MLB game I had attended since I was eight years old! Needless to say we had missed his first hit while dilly dallying around at dinner. Before it happened I never would have thought I would have cared. But when I was there and knew I had missed a quarter of the final act it really steamed me. Which may explain why I didn’t have any further contact with my date and why his name still escapes me. I know that I thanked him in between the complaining over missing the first hit but I really wish I knew how to reach him now because he and his Aunt’s tickets are the reason I am the obsessed Sox fan that I am today.

next week, COLLEGE BALL - PART II, where Molly meets up again with her Mets fan friends from high school and fits right in in Boston...


erin said...

i have only been to fenway once, but would love to go again. my family is originally from MA so many of them are huge red sox fans. my boyfriend is from rhode island and also a huge fan. i guess you could say i am also a fan by default :)

Sandy Nawrot said...

Keep 'em coming girl! I look forward to these every week.

Lynn said...

This is fun reading about the beginnings of your obsession with baseball. Mine started much less auspiciously with all those hours my sister and I spent under the bleachers at the Little League field while our brothers played. We were not paying attention to the game but were looking for gum wrappers to add to our 30-feet-long gum chains. Do little kids even make gum chains anymore? I would so love that experience you described of turning down the volume of the game on tv or radio and hearing the actual, live roar of the fans.

Devilish Southern Belle said...

I've never been to an MLB game before in my life, but it sounds so exciting!

Thanks for stopping by my blog for the Thursday 13.

ChandaDiane said...

Great story :D I remember my first (and so far only) MLB game, too. Good times!
Thank you :)