Love and Loathing in Colorado
Man, trying to get back into blogging has been extremely difficult! Lots of things have come up that have prevented me from doing this thing that I love. So, hopefully I can be back… for real and get back on that top 50 list that I’m now lusting after… Anyway, here we go.
In this world, there will always be winners…… and there will always be losers.
In any competition, there will always be one man, one team, one triumph, one moment of complete victory and domination over the formidable enemy.
As children, we were taught that good will always vanquish evil. For me, Disney movies taughtme that. Ariel beats Ursula (Prince Eric if you want to get technical), Simba beats Scar, and Little Foot will always prevail over Sharp Tooth. Okay, so that last one wasn’t Disney but I can’t resist that little dinosaur (little known fact: I cried in that movie). Too bad they soiled the name of Little Foot by making like… 18 follow-up movies that were all terrible. That’s not actually what I want to talk about though.
We all like to taste supremacy no matter what the situation. Winning is the sweetest taste we can have. The release of endorphins that surge through your brain telling you that you are, in fact, the better person. You didn’t just decide that you were better, you proved it to everyone by beating that person or that team. However, the taste of defeat gives you the displeasure of festering in the vile, sickening, and horrible feeling that you were beaten. That you are the lesser and you are leaving the battle with nothing. It’s a feeling you never get over, you may move past it, but you’ll never get over it.
As fans, we also relish in the victories and suffer through the defeats of our favorite teams. If you’re a Broncos fan, you love to see them pulverize the Raiders. An Avalanche fan lives to see the destruction of the Red Wings. And a Red Sox fan basks in any victory over the Yankees. You can’t be a Rockies fan and say Eric Byrnes is your favorite player. If you’re a Red Sox fan, you can no longer proclaim your love for Johnny Damon. See, there are these certain unspoken rules that say if you like x, you can’t also like y. As a fan, I love rivalries. The anger and the passion that goes into the game makes it that much better, that much more intense.
With that premise, let me tell you that I am not ashamed of the teams that I love. I will wear them proudly. There’s a 99.5% chance that I am the only person in Colorado with a bag like this:
No, it’s not a jersey, it’s a bag. An amazingly awesome bag. Everyone always thinks that I made it. Yeah right. 1. I’m the second least domesticated person I know, and 2. Like I could bring myself to destroy a Josh Beckett jersey.
So, if you ever see someone walking around with that bag, there is a 99.5% chance that it’s me.
Anyway, here’s the deal. I was sitting in Starbucks with my Red Sox jersey bag slung over my chair and I’m sporting a Ryan Spilborghs t-shirt. As I’m getting ready to leave, this elderly woman asks me if I made my bag. I tell her no, I could never bring myself to destroy a Josh Beckett jersey. She said something along the lines that she absolutely loved it, but would love if more if it were another team. If I recall correctly, and I would like to think that I am, she said something about really not liking the Red Sox. Half way out the door, I turned around and explained to her that I absolutely bleed purple and black and love the Rockies.
Interjection: I am a Rockies fan, the Red Sox are not my #2 team, they’re my other favorite team; however, if it came down to it, I would cheer for the Rockies in the World Series.
Anyway, there was a slight element of surprise on her face, and then she spoke these words:
“You can’t be a Rockies fan AND a Red Sox fan.”
Oh god… here we go. Any time anyone says that to me, there needs to be this long explanation of why you CAN be both a Rockies fan and a Red Sox fan. Often times, I find myself confusing passion with anger… meaning that in a heated debate, I may sometimes yell. This had to be restrained because I was talking to an elderly woman, and let me tell you, it was not easy.
“See, there’s this idea that a rivalry actually exists between the Rockies and the Red Sox, which there is none. Before this World Series, there wasn’t anything. The Rockies swept the Diamondbacks in the NLCS, so does that mean…”
No, she would hear none of it. Not rudely, but in that “I’m cute because I’m an old lady so I can say things to you that you can’t argue” way she said,
“you can argue all you want, but you won’t convince me.”
Well, that was it, I wasn’t going to convince her. So, I left the Starbucks feeling defeated. This got me thinking, am I wrong to live and breathe for both the Rockies and the Red Sox? Can you really NOT be a fan of both teams? Is my life a lie?!
Yes, when you’re younger you’re taught that good vanquishes evil, but in this case… there’s not really an evil one. I mean, in the eyes of some people, the Red Sox are the evil ones, and the heroes fell to them.
I can understand things like, you can’t be a Red Sox fan and a Yankees fan. The rivalry between those two teams runs deep, it’s been there for decades, a century! Anytime I meet a Yankees fan, unless they convince me otherwise they’re put in that 80% of fake Yankees fans. Like I said, I proudly represent my teams, and I despise bandwagon fans. Anyway, whenever I meet someone who looks at my bag and says that they’re a Yankees fan, I always want to do the jerk thing and ask them about their favorite player, how many championships the Yankees have won. I mean, let’s face it, the Yankees are an easy team to like, they win… a lot. And everyone likes to win, so everyone is okay with proclaiming themselves as a Yankees fan. Anyway, that’s another tangent.
So… yeah, there’s a rivalry between the Red Sox and the Yankees that has been there for quite some time… so… when did losing in the World Series constitute a rivalry between the Red Sox and the Rockies? I mean… what was supposed to happen? Were the Red Sox supposed to think, “oh hey, you haven’t won a World Series yet… why don’t we just throw this series and let you win.” No, that’s ridiculous.
Yeah, the Rockies were swept, beaten down very badly. But didn’t they do the same thing to the Diamondbacks? I mean, everyone knows that Eric Byrnes said, “I don’t think the Rockies outplayed us.” Yes Eric Byrnes, yes they did. And then the Red Sox outplayed the Rockies. Straight up, they were outplayed, it was obvious. It could’ve been the long break that the Rockies were on, it could’ve been that it was just the end of that miracle. Yeah, it would’ve made a great Cinderella story to see the Rockies win a World Series, but they didn’t.
So now, I’m with the Rockies when I know that we’re still lusting after that World Series trophy. I’m with the Rockies knowing that we will never get over that sweep by the Red Sox. And I’m with the Rockies believing that we were straight up outplayed by the Red Sox. It was a hell of a run, and yes, it came to an end. But in no way, in my eyes, will that ever constitute a rivalry between the Rockies and the Red Sox. To me, people who believe that are ignorant of what actually happens in baseball and what sports are about. There will always be a winner and there will always be a loser, and it should be that motivation that makes us want it more.
I may be the only Rockies AND Red Sox fan in the state of Colorado… in the world, but I AM a fan of both teams, and I will wear BOTH proudly, always. Hate me if you want for the things that I love, I won’t hold it against you, because I don’t jump on and off the bandwagon.
Also, after reliving those 21 out of 22 games, I know that nobody deserved a World Series trophy like the Rockies did. I also know that it’s not osmething that happened. No matter what happened though, 50 years down the road, it will be something that is remembered. As nice as the Commissioner’s Trophy would have been, the Rockies WILL be remembered for their race to a championship. It’s like… they may not be champions, but they sure as hell played like champions.
1. Photo courtesy: olympics.fanhouse.com