Red Sox Fans Now Chicago Cubs Fans

For one month, and one month only,  much of Red Sox Nation has jumped on the Chicago Cubs bandwagon. Why? Because the Cubs have suffered longer than Red Sox fans, going 107 years without a championship. After the Red Sox waited 86 years in between championships, most of Red Sox Nation can empathize with the Cubs, and were quick to jump on their bandwagon.

And when you look at the Chicago Cubs, it’s not hard to find reasons to root for them. For Chicago Cubsstarters, ex-Red Sox pitcher Jon Lester, part of 2 championships, and ex-GM Theo Epstein, who built the team who broke the “Curse of the Bambino,” are both with the Cubs now. Not to mention Manny Ramirez, who won the World Series MVP in 2004, and David Ross, who was one of the leaders of the beard movement in 2013. Second, the Cubs are loaded with young talent, notably Jake Arrieta and Kris Bryant. Those are just a couple of the things the Cubs have going for them.

But the main thing? Empathy. For 86 years, the Red Sox were in the same boat as the Cubs. While our curse involved a questionable trade, being unlucky in the World Series, a missed ground ball, and a few ill-timed home runs by the New York Yankees, we eventually broke it after 86 years. The Cubs are cursed in a different way; theirs involving a goat, a tavern, and an unfortunate case of fan interference back in 2003 in the NLCS against the Florida Marlins. So, the Red Sox and Cubs are similar in that they were both cursed for long periods of time.

Personally, I really hope the Cubs finish the job. They need to break their curse, since they’re the only team left with a “curse”, and they need to win it all. They’ll face the New York Mets in the NLCS. Go Cubs.

Reflecting: 2004 ALCS 10 Years Later

Ten years ago tonight was a turning point for me personally as well as Red Sox Nation. 2004 world seriesSo, where should I begin this story?

2004 was a year of change. After serving 8 years in the U.S Marine Corps, I became a civilian once again and I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life as a civilian. Biding my time while I figured out life as a civilian, I continued selling programs at Fenway Park. Little did I know that my life would intertwine with the Red Sox to bring me to the point I’m at today in 2014.

It was a cold, crappy night in the Bronx. Some Sox fans told me that had seen Curt walk in and that he was warming up. I couldn’t believe my eyes, as I huddled around a  hot chocolate; sure enough, Curt Schilling was warming up to start game 6 of the ALCS.

As the game started and the innings rolled on, all of the screens in the stadium showed “the sock”, and this is all anyone was talking about. Fans on both sides expected the curse to rear it’s ugly head. But it never did and “Big Game Curt” came through. The Red Sox beat the Yankees 4-2.

Later that night, as I left the park, the media used words like “courage”, “strength”, “heart”. It was at that time that I learned what it really meant to be a Boston Red Sox fan.

When you’re in the moment, you don’t stop to smell the roses. When you’re in the big spot light, you don’t think, “What’s this gonna be like in 10 years?” You just roll with the punches. Looking back on it, I can’t believe how important that game, and the entire ’04 post season, was for me both personally and professionally. It was the start of something great for a company called Beantown Collectibles and, many years later, Yawkey Way Report.It was also the start of something great for Boston. No one suspected that it was the beginning of a string of World Series trophies for the BoSox (a total of three in the last 10 years), with a total of eight Championships in eleven years in Boston. No other city in the world can make that claim.

This truly is Title Town, USA.

10 years ago tonight— true grit and the bloody sock—what a ride it’s been for Red Sox Nation and for me.