From Nicaragua to Boston, the Sox Victory is Sweet
The Boston Red Sox’s historic World Serieswin in October sent fans worldwide into ajoyous frenzy. Tico Times reporter TimRogers recounts his celebration experience.BOSTON – “The only thing that could make this night anymore spectacular would be if the moon fell out of its orbit andcrashed into the earth,” I waxed stupidly, after downing ourfourth celebratory shot of tequila.“At this point, that would be fine with me,” answered Scott,a fellow lifelong Red Sox fan.Scott and I are the two biggest Sox fanatics in Granada,Nicaragua which wouldn’t be saying much, except for the factthat we probably would be tops on any Sox-fan list anywhere inthe world. We just happen to live in Central American.Scott can remember crushing Sox defeats from before I wasborn, two months before the 1975 World Series, when the Soxlost in seven games to the Cincinnati Reds. But my hurt, prior toOct. 27, was just as intense as that of any Boston centenarian whowatched every loss since the 1918 season – the last time the Soxwon it all (now the second-to-last time! It feels great to say ‘thelast time the Red Sox won the World Series, I was 29. It happenedone week ago!’).During the regular season, Scott and I discovered it was badluck to watch the games together at his house or at mine. So wewatched the entire World Series together at a restaurant and barknown locally as “Three-fingered Jimmy’s.”The shift of venue, coupled with more than a half dozen othersuperstitious rituals I perform religiously on game days, helpedthe Sox sweep the Cardinals last week in a painless cakewalk (Ihave gotten more stressed out about regular-season home standsagainst the Detroit Tigers in May).“To Marty Barrett,” I said, as we toasted again to one of myall-time favorite Sox players from the ’86 World Series team.Our second shot had been to Bill Buckner, of bow-legged,wobbly ankle infamy (may he now finally sleep through the nightwithout having nightmares about Mookie Wilson).THE Boston Red Sox had just won the 100th World Seriesand I didn’t know how to behave. No one did.It was an event I had fantasized about for 18 years, trying toimagine what it would feel like when the glorious moment everpresented itself.And then, when Keith Foulke hesitantly flipped the ball toDoug Mientkiewicz to record the FINAL OUT on Oct. 27, all Iwanted to do was run around in circles waving my arms until Ifell down crying.Instead, I answered my cell phone, which began ringing moments after the Sox bench cleared for theobligatory pile up in the infield.“Can you believe it?” came my dad’s voicefrom Wellesley, Massachusetts.“I have been waiting 18 years for thismoment,” I sobbed, now standing outside the barto spare myself the embarrassment of crying infront of strangers who didn’t get it.“I have been waiting 60 years!” my dadreplied, not entirely truthfully.MY dad, on the night of THE WIN, wasactually 59 years and 363 days old. We were havinga surprise birthday party for him on Saturday,after THE VICTORY PARADE. I was flying upto Boston on Friday for both events, unbeknownstto my parents.Thursday, the day after THE WIN, was highlyunproductive, except for a visit to the town ofDiriomo to pay homage to a Nicaraguan witchdoctorwho predicted the Sox WorldChampionship a month earlier.On Sept. 30, before the post season began, Imet renowned seer William Mena and ask himabout the Red Sox’s chances.Every Sox fan knows that curses and paranormalforces are at play when Boston is in thepost season. So who better to ask than a man whounderstands that world?“Are the Red Sox going to win the WorldSeries this year?” I asked.Mena thought about it for several moments,then answered: “This is the year to accomplishthe impossible.”“So does that mean the Sox are going to winthe series?” I asked again.“Congratulations,” he said.I immediately told everyone I knew aboutour conversation.THREE weeks later, when the Sox cameback from being behind 0-3 to beat the Yankeesin the ALCS, the headline of the Nicaraguandaily newspaper read: “Boston Accomplishes theImpossible.”The day after the Sox won the series, Scottand I drove up to Diriomo, found Mena, showedhim the headline in the paper and baptized himas an honorary member of Red Sox Nation. Hewasn’t surprised by the headline or the Sox victory.He is used to being right about his predictions.AN hour before I left for Managua to catchmy flight, The Boston Globe called to interviewme about flying all the way up there for theparade. The next day, the Globe reported that I,Tim Rogers, 29, of Wellesley, was the Sox fantraveling the furthest to be at the parade onSaturday.I knew the article would not help my chancesof sneaking into town for the surprise party. Sureenough, a friend of the family read the article andcalled my house, leaving a recording on theanswering machine saying “how nice that theGlobe is reporting Tim will be in town for theweekend” – a message that befuddled my mother.My sister handled damage control, tellingmom that yes, I was in town, and no, don’t letdad find out about it before the party.AT the parade on Saturday, I lined the dampand cold street with throngs of Sox fans of allages, unaware at the time that my dad was oneblock away doing the same thing. (We didn’t discoverthis until later that afternoon at the birthdayparty, which managed to be a surprisedespite the publicized clues and close-call circumstance).When the players finally passed by in theduckboats, Boston erupted in celebration – atantra-like release of 86 years of collective frustrations,disappointments, defeats and doubts.THE 2004 Red Sox have forever changedthe collective psyche of Boston. We were nolonger the loveable losers who are noble indefeat. We are now a confident First-WorldSuper Power who is unconquerable in all testsmortal.Despite the bad weather, millions showed upto embrace our city’s new reality and look forward,as always, to next year.The grey skies and cold dampness were OKby us because at least it wasn’t the Yankees whowere raining on our parade this year.
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