While waiting for my ride back to my apartment tonight, three girls, arms linked, walked by me on Commonwealth Avenue, singing “Take Me Out to the Ballgame” horrendously off-tune. Cars were making their way down the street, beeping their horns in unintelligible tunes. Although it was 12:45am, there were groups of people around, taking to each other, backpacks stuffed with midterm studying that had just sat on their lap, not actually being studied, for the past four hours.
Everyone has shunned FM radio in their cars. No one has cared for the past two weeks if you like country, alt rock or teen pop, because music that is not either “Sweet Caroline,” “Dirty Water,” or “Tessie” does not exist to us right now.
Professors start their class by saying, “Luckily this class is scheduled till 7pm, meaning we have an hour to all get home–otherwise, I’d have to let you go early,” and mean it. Professors who held class at 4pm on the first day of the ALDS ran back and forth to their offices to check the score and report it back to us.
I had three 19 year old guys willingly take my markers and make “Hit it Far, Millar” posters out of construction paper and hang them up on the wall of BU Central, our student lounge. I witnessed college guys–who despite wanting to appeal to girls, hate to seem anything remotely emotional–emotional. I sat next to groups of girls dissecting which pitcher throws the best curveball, and why trading Nomar could be considered a good idea. One of these conversations taking place by me one night turned into a football discussion, with one girl turning to another and saying, “You know who is grossly underrated as a quarterback? Steve Young. He did have the highest quarterback rating of all time, and he totally hooked up with Jerry Rice for enough touchdowns.” And that girl, believe it not, wasn’t me.
People who take Greek, Latin, French, and German are suddenly throwing the word “papi” around like they’ve been taking Spanish all this time. Jewish girls are wearing a t-shirt with a man who resembles Jesus–well, at least his hair does–and the words, “The Passion of the Johnny.” Academics and their friends who consider professional sports the spawn of a non-denominational Satan are now wearing red and blue hats. Girls who had only watched Fox before for “The OC” now criticize the network’s Yankee’s bias. And there are always at least five of us in a room at any one time who crack up when they run that commercial where the doctor yells, ‘You are risking a patient’s life!”
It’ll all end tomorrow night, maybe early Thursday morning. I’ll pick up BU Central and the Ballroom one last time, say good night to my police detail one last time, say good night and good job to Chris and his people one last time, and carry my Gabe Kapler shirt wearing body to Commonwealth Ave and resign myself to finally going home despite the advanced hour. Sure, I’ll work with them all again, probably as early as Thursday, but it won’t be this. It won’t ever be eating mediocre hot dogs and squishing 350 into a room for 300, stacking plastic chairs at 1am, while watching the preempted news. It won’t be 300 something college students standing, clapping, cheering, rallying and hugging like they had Green Monster seats. Unfortunately, October only comes once a year, and it’s nearly over, and there’s no promise of annuality.
I have never experienced anything like it, and I doubt I ever will. I’ve been a sports fan since I was little, first with the Olympics, then with football, always with hockey, and now with baseball–and this has been the most fun. Even if it all ends tomorrow, these last two and a half weeks have been some of the most memorable of my life, and if I ever question why I moved to Boston, all I’ll have to remind myself of is this.