I am a sports fan. Wait, let me clarify. I am a die-hard NEW ENGLAND sports fan for all intents and purposes. My house is filled with Red Sox, Patriots, Bruins and Celtics memorabilia, autographed pictures, helmets and more balls than is humanly necessary. I agree that yes, absolutely, the Yankees suck.
I even have four…let’s count them…FOUR Wheaties cereal boxes displayed in lucite plastic holders displaying the incredible achievements of the Patriots and Red Sox during their glory days in the previous decade. There’s a story about the time my mother fed my nephew seven-year-old Wheaties from a box that was in my brother’s house (but he neglected to put it in one of those wonderful lucite plastic holders so how would my mother know not to look at the expiration date?). Long story short, my nephew survived the trauma. Mom is not allowed to ever touch cereal in the house again.
I grew up with a father who is a Red Sox season ticket holder and has been a season ticket holder for almost forty years. That’s a long time. When Kevin and I started dating, Kevin’s mouth began to water once he found out where my father’s seats were. My father told him that he would be more than happy to include a son-in-law in his Red Sox partnership. To this day, I am convinced that’s why Kevin proposed marriage to me.
As huge of a sports fan as my father is, my husband blows him out of the water. I have NEVER seen such an intense fan. He is now a Red Sox season ticket holder AND a Patriots season ticket holder. Now, the Red Sox I can handle. I grew up with this, so it’s nothing new for me. My dad and my brother would go to every Sunday home game (Dad takes Sundays and goes in three hours before game time to get free parking at a meter…it’s a Jewish thing…) and we would revolve our lives around the Sunday Sox games. All barbecues, Mother’s and Father’s Day celebrations, birthdays, anniversaries, you name it, had to revolve around the Sox. So, like I said, I grew up with this.
Now we have to throw Saturday into the mix, too, as that is Kevin’s day. He also goes to the game three hours early, but that’s to start drinking heavily (it’s an Irish thing…). He also parks at a meter, as some of the Jewishness IS rubbing off after sixteen years. He goes with a ton of quarters and runs from the bar to the meter every two hours until game time. At least he’s working some of the beer off. But again, I can deal with it.
Ah…football. Another animal entirely. This sport requires “tailgating”, which Kevin, his brother and two friends have raised to an art form. Each week of a Patriots home game the “buyer” is in charge of beer and food. Oh, I’m sorry, the buyer’s WIFE is in charge. The menu is usually something healthy like bacon and eggs on the grill, steak tips, chicken wings, chips, cheese, crackers, pepperoni, Pizza Rolls (still don’t know how that made it onto the menu but it is a permanent staple) and 60 beers. The 60 beers are gone by the end of the tailgating session. Consumed by four men. One of whom is driving, but I digress.
The tailgating for a 1:00 p.m. game starts at 9:00 a.m. I do not see him again until 6:30 p.m. This literally lasts ALL DAY LONG. It’s seriously an orgy of food, beer and sports. They even have their bathroom breaks so that nobody has to be away from the beer for too long. This is called…”the double door”. Basically, to shield the glaring white derrieres of the boys, they open the driver’s and left rear passenger’s car doors and urinate between the doors. I must say, they are classy, classy guys.
To protect his body from becoming frostbitten, he dresses in many, many layers. Underwear, LONG underwear, nylon pants, jeans over those, three shirts, two sweatshirts, two jackets, a “liner” hat, a regular winter hat and gloves. Usually a spare pair of gloves as well, just in case he pees on one or something. Hey, as the day goes on, coordination starts to falter.
The lovely gentlemen also indulge in a “game cigar” or four. So as soon as he comes home from the game, all of the offending clothes are shucked off one by one and left in a heap on the floor. He then takes a shower (creating MORE laundry) and wears another shirt and pajama pants which are then put in the giant pile in the morning. I am literally confronted with Mt. Vesuvius of laundry after every game day.
When the Patriots lost the deciding game yesterday, the BIG ONE that would determine whether or not they would advance in the playoffs, securing me one extra less week of laundry, I celebrated like I have never celebrated before. I drank my celebratory glass of Riesling last night and toasted the Pats loss. I am safe for another eight months. AMEN!
Because that novel isn't going to delay itself
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