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Once more into the breach

Filed in: personal, politics, Mon, Nov 1 2004 21:58 PT

I have been focusing on two things over the last few weeks: the election, and the Red Sox. It has been physically and emotionally exhausting, in both cases, for similar reasons, but naturally with different implications, different gravity.

I am a Red Sox fan by birth. I was too young to suffer Bucky Dent, but hitting my baseball-watching prime around the Bill Buckner incident (which can now be discussed openly in Sox circles, where until this Series it was strictly Not Spoken Of). Aaron Boone’s homer last year was tragic, but for a Sox fan, not unexpected.

But this year was different. Even down 3-0, having been crushed 19-8, a lot of us suspected something could happen. I was on my way to Dublin when Game 4 happened. Then I saw that the Sox took Game 5, then Game 6, and I knew, despite all evidence, despite all of my history, dammit, this is our time.

The best part was, I wasn’t alone. I know friends across the country who felt the same way, who traded nods and high-fives with total strangers during the comeback. Something similar even happened to a friend of mine who was traveling in Ethiopia. We could feel something happening. But we never said it. We didn’t want to jinx it. We wouldn’t dare do that to our team.

And oh, how I suffered that Wednesday night. I lay awake from 2:15 to 5am in a Dublin bed and breakfast, trying to sleep, but knowing that history was being made back home. I called my wife to find out that it was 6-1 in the third, and again seconds before the final out. It was something I knew would happen.

That’s how tonight and tomorrow will feel to me. I’ll go to bed, hopefully physically exhausted from my workout. But I’m apt to wake up early, and dig around for every resource available to see how things will turn out. I will turn on the postgame at 4pm to see what is happening thousands of miles away. I’ll watch the highlights, follow the box score. And if I’m right, I’ll celebrate like I did last Wednesday night, and the Wednesday before.

I have my gut feeling for how it will go. I won’t say it out loud until it happens. But you know what I’ll be thinking.

Dammit, this is our time.

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