A Cultured Red Sox Nation
I am a white boy. I know, when you look at the picture I look like a wooden Pinnochio boy, but trust me, I'm white. As you have probably noticed, Boston, and the rest of New England, is pretty white, too.
But all of this is changing. We, as a group, are becoming Dominican. New England is known, in some circles, as Red Sox Nation.
Let me describe Red Sox Nation to you. It is a term to describe the millions of people who are waiting for that day when the Red Sox reclaim their World Series. The members know every player and listen to every game. They have opinions on every person, every decision, and every play. They go though life waiting, waiting, waiting for The Year.
My grandmother is a member of Red Sox Nation. She sends me letters every so often - she only lives a few miles away, but you know how it is. Three pages will be about the Sox, and one about my new cousin. We have our priorities, and Red Sox are number one.
Red Sox Nation includes Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, and parts of Connecticut. Somewhere, there is a line in Connecticut where the evil Yankees begin to hold sway. Red Sox Nation encompasses a lot of people, but, now, in all its "whiteness," it is finding a whole new way to look at things.
Pedro Martinez is in town, and he is here to stay. The Red Sox spent $75 million to bring this man to Fenway. He appeared for the first time on Saturday, and the event was pure electricity.
First of all, the man pitched a game of complete dominance against the Seattle Mariners. He pitched all nine innings without giving up a run. Moreover, he only gave up two hits - neither of which was much to look at. This 160-pound weakling kept 1997's highest scoring team locked in a cage, and he made it seem effortless.
Can you feel the hope that this man brings to Red Sox Nation? Can you see the grandparents, and even great-grandparents, who only want to see the Red Sox win before they die? They have new hope. Pedro is in town.
Second of all, he brought a new crowd to Fenway. The stands were filled with Dominicans, screaming their lungs out. Pedro got a strikeout; the crowd went wild. Pedro got an out; the crowd went wild. Pedro finished an inning; the crowd went wild. Pedro stood up; the crowd went wild.
And not only would the fans scream and shout, but they would also wave Dominican flags wildly in the air. I have never seen anything but a few Fourth of July flags in the park. But Saturday, Fenway was a sea of red, white, and blue - and not in the usual order.
This is Pedro's biggest effect. He is bringing about the merger of the Dominican Republic and Red Sox Nation. This is not an easy task, but can you imagine the result? Hundreds of thousands of a formerly white people, now a part of a multicultural people. It is something to watch.
I grew up in New Hampshire, where my father was from. My mother is from Boston. I was born in Cambridge and have lived my life in New Hampshire. That makes me a Red Sox fan, and it makes me white. (Some claim that both of these are birth defects, but I prefer to think of them as features.)
I am going to the game again today with my fraternity. I have bought a new possession. I will display it while screaming wildly. I will be waving a flag of the Dominican Republic.