Friday, April 6, 2007

Mistaken for a fan

In 2004 my employer sent me to the Democratic National Convention in Boston. Amazing trip, definitly something I will never forget. I was working, so I didn't have a LOT of time to sight see and souvenir shop but I did manage to pick up a momento. One that I still make good use of... in fact I had it on today.

Now, I like ball caps in general, but I REALLY like this one. It has sentimental value, it wears well, it has a good story behind it, I like the color... problem is when I wear it people think that I have it on because I am a Red Sox Fan.

"Your boys sure kicked ass tonight!" or "How about that Matsuzaka?" people ask as I walk past. Total strangers who otherwise would have just walked on by will see my hat and want to strike up a conversation about the game.

Hard to do when you know as little about the Red Sox or baseball or even sports in general as me. I know the Red Sox is Boston's Major League Baseball team. I know they play in the storied Fenway Park (home of the green monster). I know they won the World Series in 2004 and I know they just hired a Japanese pitcher (the aforementioned, Matsuzaka) for the ridiculous sum of 51 million dollars.

The story behind the hat is too cumbersome to tell while walking past a coworker in the hall, so I've developed a good ear for inflection. I can now tell just by the way they ask about "my boys" whether it's been a good season, whether they won their most recent game and/or whether there has been some kind of controversy putting them in the headlines. Thanks to my finely tuned ear for inflection, I can respond with an appropriate, "yeah man."

"YEAH MAN," when it's good news.

"Yeah. (sigh) Man," when it's bad news.

"Yeah? MAN," when it's shocking news.

Hopefully that mollifies the TRUE fan and I'm able to make it to my destination without looking too stupid. This CAN of course backfire when someone wants to go into greater detail, but again, my keen inflection senses let me know when it's safe to make like I know what someone is talking about, and when I should just cut my losses and come clean about the real story behind the hat.

The cuteness of the person who wants to discuss the Red Sox is also a factor in my decision, but that's a whole 'nuther matrix that would take pages to explain.

A full 5 people at various points in time and locations mentioned the Red Sox to me today. I'm always surprised the first time because I can't imagine why anyone would want to talk baseball with me. Then I remember that I'm wearing the hat. Today I gave 4 of those people the appropriate "yeah man" (three "YEAH MAN!"'s and one "YEAH? man.") and one person got the hat explanation. The one who got the full disclosure seemed disappointed. He's from Boston so I asked him if it was cool to wear the hat, even though I'm not a fan. He said, "Yeah man."


kevin said...

You're looking pretty trendy in your baseball cap. Baseball isnt that popular down here. We have to settle for cricket which is too slow and boring.

Do you have a baseball team in Atlanta? I have just seen a programme on TV about tornadoes. Do you get them in your city? It was such a great programme because these guys got to hang out right near where tornadoes were forming. So interesting. It kind of reminds me of the wizard of oz. What's the best thing about living in Atlanta?

Kev in NZ

CondoBlogger said...

Hey Kev,

Many people say Baseball is slow and boring too! Atlanta's team is the Braves. Their stadium was built as part of the Olympic stadium when the games were here in '96.

We have the occasional tornado here, but they are faily rare. One recently in the southern part of the state caused quite a bit of damage.

Best part about living in Atlanta? Gas is usually pretty cheap here. LOL... No I think the best part is living in a big city with all the amenities one would find in L.A. or Chicago but without the high cost of living. Atlanta is still affordable.

Paul said...


This is proof that you are what you wear. However, it's amazing how often t-shirts and ball caps should be considered deceptive advertising.


mist1 said...

I have this really tacky lime green hat that I got in Turks in Caicos. It is a conversation piece. From now on, when people ask me about it, I'm just gong to say "yeah man."

Maddog said...

I like the yeah, man answer. I usually don't even hide the fact that I don't know what they're talking about. I'd be a smart ass and ask them how many touchdowns they scored last night. That usually shuts em up.

Kerry said...

Love this.
My 10 year old is a huge Yankee fan. He's on his school's baseball team. The name of the school starts with a B and their hats look just like yours. My son HATES wearing that hat. He wants to go to another school.

Diesel said...

That's funny. I never wear hats with team logos on them because I can't think on my feet like that. I'd probably just blurt out, "I don't know anything! It's not even my hat!" Then I'd throw it at them and run.

somewhere joe said...

Nice looking cap, CB - goes with everything, I'm sure. Just be glad you didn't fall in love with a Yankees cap. "Yeah man" wouldn't get you off that easy...