Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Red Rage

What's a Nubian?

Here’s the thing about Theo: none of us outside of the organization will ever know what really happened. I realize this fact, on an intellectual level. I try not to buy into the typecasting of Larry Lucchino as the bad guy, the power-hungry face of evil, the George Steinbrenner of Boston, despite the accusations by fans and sports writers and descriptions from a friend of mine about Lucchino’s behavior with the Padres, because I don’t know the full story.

On an emotional level though, I’m full of rage. Here’s the guy for the job, right there, no looking required and the Sox lose him because of a power-hungry CEO. Even worse, I can relate this rage back to an intellectual level: it’s the beginning of the off-season and there are several big signings that need to be done, a Manny Ramirez to be kept or traded, a bullpen and a starting rotation to be built…and the Red Sox have no General Manager, no guy to get the deals done. I’m ready to write the 2006 season off right now, because Boston’s going to miss the starting gun.

But really, a user comment on today’s Soxaholics post nails my underlying problem on the head: Boston fans are so crazy because everyone, from the sports writers to Chahlie tendin’ bah on Comm. Ave. to yours truly think that we’re on the team. Seriously, just sit there and think about it for a moment. If you really care about the Red Sox, you get frustrated when the front office signs the wrong player, when the team is doing poorly, when Manny says he wants to be traded…not because you’re a fan, but because you feel like the team you invest so much emotional energy into is letting you down, like you have a right to satisfaction because you’re a part of the organization. I’m convinced that the expression of this phenomenon is unique to Boston sports fans. To be honest, there are days when being a member of such a passionate fan base is the most thrilling thing in the world, because you can surround yourself with people who really care about the team. And then there are days, like today, when you wish to God your fellow fans were a bit more normal.