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Declare independence! Don't let them do that to you!!

Sunday, October 01, 2006

'You Gotta Believe' 

Y'know, it's not often that I go to a baseball game. Or any professional sports to-do. Thats really because, while I enjoy the experience of a live sporting event, I'd rather spend that money on a movie ticket, or in a dimly lit den, or on rent! That having been said, when I do go out to a game, I like to get into it. Really into it. I nod enthusiastically as fans on line spout off the stats of players I've never heard of before, and will never in my life remember once I've left the stadium. The exhilaration of being surrounded by thousands of insane people is its own reward. No additives necessary. Now lately, the baseball team that I go see is the hard-luck Pittsburgh Pirates. When I was a kid, I went to go see the hard-luck Mets. As an adult I've become accustomed to rooting for the losing team because of all my youthful training. "Maybe next time" became my battle cry before the game had even started. I was just happy to be outside. When you don't care, it's kind of fun to pretend you do, and since I've been in Pittsburgh Ive seen about half a dozen Pirates games, each one a thrilling defeat. I cheer, they lose. It's a tidy situation. Each loss jazzing me up for next years they just-might-make it-probably-not, scenario. So this year, when i heard that not only were my Mets number one by a long shot, but they were coming over to Pittsburgh to beat up on these midwest scrubs (the Pirates were in penultimate place), I elated. Finally, I thought, if the conditions were ever set in stone for a Mets victory this was it. HUZZAH! Hurrah! Surely my time had finally come where the team I was rooting for would actually win.
Just guess what fucking happened. JUST GUESS! The gutter-ball Pirates swept them! One! Two! Three! And there I was, wearing team colors, feeling as if it were the early 90's all over again. Feeling as if maybe it was my involvement that set the jinx. And I wasn't the only one, although i tried to photograph it, it was impossible to capture the feeling of dejection in the crowd. Almost half of the people in attendance were Mets fans, and by the end of the game, you could see the blue and orange donning frowns floating out of the stadium, back to their misery holes known as Mets fandom. But these werent the frowns one wears when your champs lose. Oh no. This was the face of weathered disappointment. The grim faces of those who know better than to expect the best from their team, even if that team is number one. The faces of true New York Mets fans. My people. My poor, sucker kin. Viva la disappointment!

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