Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Saying it loud...I am a sports fan

This is week 7 of this series.  I will let you know a little more about me in a series of succinct easy to read and access posts.  There are some things about me that I have heard regularly or wanted to say, but didn't have the guts to say.  Now, I'm going to say all of that stuff.  Hang on for the ride!

Week 2 - I am a writer
Week 3- I read for the words
Week 4- I believe in spirits
Week 5 - I love blogs
Week 6- I'm an introvert

Busch Stadium - 2  Photo Credit: css9450

Growing up my great-grandmother told me stories of seeing Enos Slaughter play.  I listened to Jack Buck on the radio with my great-grandfather.  I read letters from WWII where my grandfather was asking about the Cardinals season.  I saw tickets from the '82 World Series game my parents went to hanging in my brother's bedroom for years.  (In case you follow the link, no it wasn't game 7.  That's just what I found.  And the tickets matched my brother's decor better.)  I heard my cousin tell about the time he was at the Monday Night Miracle.  He was even on TV!  (Jerry, if you are reading, the link is highlights.  Check it out.  You might be on there.)  For my 16th birthday, I asked for hockey tickets.  We were 2nd row from the ice right beside the visitor's bench.  AMAZING seats!  We had season tickets in 1988 to the Cardinals.  We had an satellite extension put out on our patio in order to watch the Cardinals games in the summer.  When I first got married, we went to sleep ever night watching ESPN highlights.  When I was about 8 months pregnant, we went to a Blues/Hurricanes game in Raleigh and I LOVED it!  I remember going to the old Busch Stadium when it was unbearably hot.  You may not believe me, but St. Louis is one of the hottest places in the US in the summer. One year I even had to get a new t-shirt because we weren't prepared for it to be that hot.  I treasured that t-shirt.  Somewhere along the line I thought I grew "out of it" and gave it away.  I was wrong.  I am not over it.  

St. Louis Arch  Photo Credit:  Blind Grasshopper

In case you can't tell from the previous paragraph, I am a sports fan.  More specifically, I am a St. Louis fan.  I have been my entire life.  In fact I am a 4th generation St. Louis sports fan.  I am very proud of that fact.  My son will be a 5th generation St. Louis baseball fan.  My grandparents are avid Cardinals fans today.  Last season, I often heard my grandma discussing the trades the Cardinals made.  My parents have the game on every summer evening during dinner and while cleaning up the kitchen.  My mom can tell you just as much as my dad, if not more!  I can tell you about how amazing Rogers Hornsby was and how much I loved watching The Wizard do a backflip before the game.  I remember repeatedly asking my mother what RBI meant because I didn't understand it.  I remember when I thought the stolen base stat was the most important one a player could have.  I grew up watching Whiteyball  what do expect?

Blackhawks vs. Blues - Presidents Day 2011 Photo Credit: Brood_wich
(Yes those are the Blackhawks and yes Drew that is for you.)

Hockey came to me later on.  I wish I could say that I was impressed with some amazing NHL player.  I wasn't.  I watched D2:The Mighty Ducks alot.  I remember the first game I sat down to watch was in 1995 when the Rangers raised the banner.  I had no idea how historic it was at the time, but I'm awfully glad I saw it.  I soon became an enormous Blues fan.  I watched ever game.  I kept track of what team they played, the final score, who scored, and what type of goal it was (i.e. short-handed, power play, etc.)  When I went to college, my mom kept track of that for me in case I didn't get to see the game.  I remember arguing with my brother about how they should play Roman Turek.  A friend and I painted our windows in college during the playoffs when they won the President's Trophy.  I was heartbroken when Geoff Courtnall had to retire early.   I wore hockey jerseys to high school and knew I was cool!  I remember standing in the family room of a family for whom I often babysat listening to the Gretzky trade.  Yes he played in St. Louis briefly.  I would show you a picture, but the jersey was really ugly then.

My husband and I try to get either the baseball or the hockey package every year because we love watching sports!  On our long road trips, we often find a sports talk show to listen to.  We debate with the host and with each other about the points they are making.  I follow along with basketball and football although I am not an avid fan.  I love the Olympics and watch just about any sport they have.  I love the FIFA World Cup that comes around every 4 years.   Living in the south, I am now growing to be a fan of NASCAR and NHRA.  They have not convinced me of college football and basketball though!  I love sports.  I love the strategy behind them.  I love debating the merits of a specific player, team, sport, sports city, etc.  I love the immediate camaraderie that comes with finding another avid fan of your team or your sport.  I love the extensive discussions and the digs you can get in on various teams.  It doesn't matter how good or how bad a team is there is always something to say about them.  I often have strong opinions about players, teams, strategies, jerseys and everything in between.  I can be polite and deferential in most discussions.  Sport is not one of those discussions.  I tend to be more take no prisoners in my sports discussions.

I suppose most girls should not be knowledgeable about sports.  Or if they are it is simply as a byproduct of their husband's interest.  Some love sports because they played them and they're cool too.  I don't fit in to any of those categories.  I was never coordinated enough or confident enough to play a sport.  However, I have loved them since I was little and long before I met my husband.  In fact, my dad taught me how to field a baseball and shoot a free throw right along side my brother.  And I respect him so much for that!  A cool shirt or other piece of memorabilia from my team is a great present for me.  Isn't my husband lucky?  After all of these things I have rattled off and the confusion I have brought to most of my readers, it should be obvious.  I am a proud womanly sports fan!

P.S. Yes the videos excited me even though I knew exactly what was happening because these moments were so exciting!  And a little teary eyed at old Busch Stadium coming down.  

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