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August 12, 2006

A Rectum's Welcome In The Bronx

According to the information from the source, this video clip was taken during Game 2 of the 2004 ALCS. The caption from the source is "Here's what you get when you wear a Red Sox hat at a Yankees game."

Warning: If you're viewing this at work, do not have the sound on. Related, if you, or anyone around you, is offended by foul language, then you do not want to play this clip at all.

Sure, it's crude behavior. And, it's something that I wouldn't want my small children to see - in person or on video. But, then again, if you walk into someone's camp wearing the colors of someone who is trying to defeat that camp, well, what do you expect? Handshakes from the fellas, hugs from the ladies, and repeated offerings of "may the best man win"?

Hey, let's face it. You're not going to get a warm welcome if you show up at a P.E.T.A. Rally wearing a fur coat or if you show up at the Sturgis Motorcycle Rally with a petition to outlaw motorcycles. And, if you wear a Yankees cap to Fenway Park during a post-season game when New York is visiting, or a Red Sox cap to Yankee Stadium during a post-season game when Boston is visiting, you're not going to get a warm welcome there as well.

If you run around in the woods, dressed like a deer, during the peak of deer hunting season, and you end up getting shot in the ass, who's to blame for that?

This is sort of the same thing.

Posted by Steve Lombardi at August 12, 2006 10:57 PM


That's not nearly as bad as I expected after reading your intro.

If you want an example of really bad behavior, I could refer you to a story in Rob Neyer's Feeding the Green Monster (which I just finished reading). This is at Fenway. Apparently, there was a child at the game in full Yankee garb who was waving a pennant throughout the game. There were also some Red Sox fan drunks who somehow had balloons with them. Apparently, deep into the game, these drunks filled a balloon with their own urine and threw it at the child. The fan who recounted the story to Rob still remembered the stench.

Posted by: jonm [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 12:41 AM

Not a surprising story, jonm. That balloon idea is a derivation of an old prison trick. Which is probably where most of those loons spend their youth.

Posted by: baileywalk [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 01:26 AM

That video is great. The other thing you failed to mention is that those are all the die-hards too. Those aren't the fans that have all the dough in the world and can sit right behind home-plate.

I wouldn't go into Fallujah waving an Israeli flag either.

Posted by: Garcia [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 09:02 AM

What I find most interesting about that video is that sprinkled amongst the chanting men is the occasional woman - either remaining in her seat, or standing but nevertheless looking mortified.

Making your guests feel welcome is one thing, Steve, but what about making your own feel welcome? You say you wouldn't want a kid to see it - so, what, people can't bring their kids to the ballpark now?

Watching that video made me embarrassed to be a Yankees fan. On the one hand, I was glad that all they did was taunt and jeer. On the other hand, I'm not delighted to have to give any credit for *not* engaging in physical assault. This is why I detest the so-called rivalry - it brings out the very worst in everyone.

Let me put this another way that I think you will appreciate, Steve, since you are a master of illuminating analogies. To me, being a Yankees fan is a lot like being Jewish. I am a Yankees fan because that's what my dad told me I was when I was a kid. And I'm not going to stop being a Yankees fan now, just because I live in Boston, any more than I would stop being Jewish if I moved to the Vatican.

But if I did move to the Vatican, I don't think it would be okay for the cardinals to line up on the side of the street chanting "Jew, Jew" as I walked by.

You might say, well that's different from going into Yankees stadium wearing a Red Sox hat. And maybe it is. But you know what? I don't go to Fenway Park anymore, at all - Yankees in town or otherwise - because I'm sick of all the obscene T-shirts and "Yankees suck" and other moronic ranting. It's not threatening, but it's damned unpleasant, and I haven't been to a ball game in over two years even though I live within walking distance of Fenway Park.

If the rivalry can do that, how can it be good for baseball?

Posted by: carla [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 09:51 AM

I still think it's a matter of how you present your colors. If you go to the game, dressed casually, and root for your team in a respectful manner, you're not going to get killed at the park.

As far as Fenway, well, from what I've heard, you can't go into a Public Library in Boston without hearing a "Yankees Suck" chant. It's what they do - and they do it all over town - not just at the ballpark.

Are you going to stop going to bars, football games, and public parades in Boston too?

Posted by: Steve Lombardi [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 11:07 AM

My, how things have changed. I was out at Fenway back in 1997 for Yanks-Sox. Sat in the bleachers, shot the breeze with a few fans, one of them bought me a beer.

Had my Yankee cap on, I went through the game unmolested.

Another time, I almost got into it with some dolt in Detroit in 2003 because he couldn't tell the difference between a Brooklyn Cyclones and a Boston Red Sox cap. He was yelling in the bar, and I was wondering what the hell was going on, while checking to see where this Boston fan was. Didn't think anything of it until my cap was snatched. I got pissed, and got in his face, the bouncers broke it up, I left, took some pics of Tiger Stadium, then caught the bus home.

Yes, it's bs behavior, and sadly it's expected. From both sides. Screw them and their pathetic behavior.

Carla, sorry to hear about your experiences. It shouldn't have to be that way.

Posted by: Raf [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 11:11 AM

Everyone was slagging Michael Kay the other day for his analogies, and now we're comparing this bit of badness to PETA Rallies and anti-semitism in the fair fevatican? C'mon folks, it's a game. Anyway, it looked fairly good-natured to me (having attended a couple of REALLY nasty Ireland-England football games). A lot of grins and giggles among the yankee fans, and they were clearly loving being filmed.

Posted by: jamesonandwater [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 11:31 AM

Er, fair fevatican should of course read Vatican. My mother was right, I'm going to hell. More coffee requied, I think.

Posted by: jamesonandwater [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 11:33 AM

You could kind of see this conversation veering off into territory it probably shouldn't have.

I just think it's funny, Carla, that you talk about "moving to the Vatican" like it's some hotel in Italy. You can go there, you can see it, go inside it, but I think you might need a special invite from the pontiff if you want to stick around and live in it.

Posted by: baileywalk [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 11:46 AM

I know the Vatican comparison was over the top (not to mention nonsensical) and I do apologize for stooping to rhetoric that some might see as inflammatory. I didn't mean it to be. I only meant to say that baseball fandom = religion, and I wouldn't want to be harassed for my religion, and I don't harass others for their religion.

That's true even if they are in "my house" - even more so. I was raised in New York but for a variety of reasons I live in Boston now. I don't want Sox fans telling me to "go back to New York" - and so I don't think Yankees fans should treat Bostonians in New York that way either.

Steve, you ask "Are you going to stop going to bars, football games, and public parades in Boston too?" I can't stand football, but as for bars and parades, I don't go to bars when the Sox are playing the Yankees and I didn't go to the 2004 World Series parade either. Other than that, except for the occasional obnoxious t-shirt that you see around, you are wrong about the "Yankees suck" chants; they don't happen at public occasions that are unrelated to sports. They only happen at the ballpark, though they do happen at the ballpark without regard to who the opponent is.

Raf, Fenway Park has changed a lot since the Red Sox got competitive and the games started selling out every night. When I first moved here in 1993, it was a lot mellower, and Yankees-Sox games had as many Yankees fans (they come up from Connecticut and New York) as Sox fans. I was at the game in 1998 when the Yankees clinched the division in the first week of September - I bought my tickets about three days before them game - you can't do that any more - and the crowd was really half and half. That's not so any more. Now that the games all sell out there's a lot less room for anyone other than Sox fans, and the mob mentality is much stronger. It only takes a few thousand to make the game unpleasant for everyone but the few thousand are there every single night. It's just not fun any more - the park is cramped, the seats are tiny and often face the wrong way, and enough of the fans are really obnoxious that it's just not worth it to go.

Look folks, I realize my views are extreme, and that I demand a level of civility that is maybe unreasonable to demand of sports fans. That's not going to stop me from demanding it. One time I was at Fenway Park and there was a guy in front of me with his young son. The boy got caught up the "Yankees suck" thing, and the dad actually gave him a nice speech about sportsmanship and respecting the opponent. I thought it was awesome and I told the guy so. I've also seen 12-year-old kids wearing T-shirts that say "Jeter Sucks - A-Rod Swallows." If more people were like that first dad, rather than the parents of the second kid, baseball would be a lot more fun for everyone.

Posted by: carla [TypeKey Profile Page] at August 13, 2006 12:42 PM