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when your hometeam wins the championship, everything seems anticlimatic after that pivotal point where the ultimate winner is decided. nothing can compare to that original excitement, of watching the games, of not knowing what the outcome will be, your life revolving around those determining matches, your band of brothers against opponents equally if not better matched. and then it happens, you win, and for a moment you feel everything that's good, a rush of intense joy, the sense that everything is right with the world, that stars have aligned to bring victory onto the team that represents you. for something this special, for something this magical, you should get something, something tangible, but nothing can ever capture that moment. not for all the t-shirts, the posters, the autographed memorabilia, and not even for a parade.

call me a hater, but i thought the historical red sox world series champion parade was only so-so, even though seeing all the players live one last time (before the baseball season is officially over, and and the integrity of the team is in question) was pretty cool, however brief the glimpses.

i left my house 30 minutes before the start of the parade at 10am. julie was already calling me before i left the station, asking me which street corner i was standing at. there was a group of college guys, trying to grab some attention by being loud and obnoxious. something about parades that make people like that think they have a free day pass to be assholes. it wouldn't be the first time today i'd meet rowdy crowds. the train was crowded with people decked out in red sox wear (i confess, i don't own a single piece of red sox clothing). the train conductor was telling people to get off either at kendall or charles/mgh, because the downtown area was packed. i disregarded his advice and got off at park street, where it wasn't that crowded (not as crowded as the patriots' parades, where it was just a sea of people standing shoulder to shoulder). i made my way to the corner of boylston and tremont, a good location since it was right on a turn, which meant the parade would have to slow down at that spot, giving me some extra time to snap a few more photos. i called julie as soon as i got there, and i found her standing with sajid. there was a mild drizzle that would occasionally change into a light steady rain. i opened up my umbrella a few times, but not wanting to obstruct anyone's view, and with the showers dying down, i put it away.

it took over an hour before the convoy of duck tour boats at where we were standing. the excitement level was infectious, and even someone like me who normally doesn't participate in any sort of cheering was pumping my fists in the air and shouting love to the players. the entire procession passed us within 5 minutes. the crowd quickly dispersed, everyone heading to the charles river, where the parade route was extended as of last night. following the crowd, sajid broke away from the ranks to use the "bathroom" behind a tree, within plain sight of passerbys (earlier, julie had gone savage as well with her harrowing tale of "behind a bush" business).


partners

mccarty, bellhorn, roberts

millar, mientkiewicz, ramirez

theo epstein

kapler

lowe, martinez, remy

mendoza, leskanic

burke

foulke, arroyo, embree


wakefield, martinez, schilling, lowe

the banks of the river were already crowded with people, folks who caught the parade further up along the chain, who then made there way to the river like we did. bootleg vendors worked the crowd with $5 red sox t-shirts dispensed from trash bags. i watched some college boys drink beer and smoke, one boy in particular using the grassy ground in front of him as a spittoon. out on the floating dock, the DCR had speakers set up and a deejay was playing crowd pleasing music. sailboats crisscrossed the water, as well as a handful of seemingly-illegal kayakers. when the duck boats finally arrived, they were so heavy with players that the tailend of some those vehicles looked like it was nearly submerged in the water.

the duck boats!


old-timers

johnny damon

owners

francona, epstein

kapler, mirabelli

veritek, nixon

martinez, schilling, wakefield, lowe, remy

burke, youkilis

arroyo, foulke

millar, ramirez, mientkiewicz, cabrera

myers, leskanic

sweeps girl, wally the green monster

where's david ortiz? i went to 2 different spots and i didn't see him! he's so elusive, maybe he's shy.

after it was all over, we cut through back bay to chinatown. the streets were empty as a result of the ongoing road blocks, the only traffic were pedestrians, mostly all of them wearing something red sox related. banners and signs hung from nearly every single store front, congratulating the red sox on their world series victory. sajid bought a commemorative red sox world series issue of sports illustrated. if nothing else, fans should get that magazine for the naked photo of manny sitting in the locker room.

julie wanted to go to apollo grill but they weren't open until 5pm. so instead we went to pho hoa. sajid went with the chicken vermicelli based on my recommendation, i had a large bowl of pho, and julie had some sort of rice hot pot with frog legs being one of the ingredients. after lunch, sajid and julie went to a bar to drink while i went home. a door was left open and i managed to sneak into the station for free (saving myself $1.25). the train wasn't crowded (not as crowded if i left immediately after the parade) and i rode home listening to the chatter of loud teenagers.

i came home around 3pm and found two men sitting on the front stoop of my house. "hi," i said, "are you waiting for someone?" "oh no, we're just sitting around," one of them said. "oh," i replied, and then motioned that i was trying to get inside. they both looked kind of scraggly, perhaps homeless, one guy looked like the last sorry red sox fan in the master card commercial, the other one looked like the vehix dude without the box. vehix was reading from a book, red sox fan seemed bored. they didn't leave right away, i watched them from the window, thinking maybe i should take a photo in case i need to identify them for the police. a few minutes later they left. could they be casing the neighborhood? well good luck breaking in since i'm always home. i watched the tape that i'd recorded of the parade. i was determined to spend the rest of my saturday napping, waking up to make some sort of dinner. i watched something's gotta give (2003) on HBO. my plans changed when renata called me a little bit before 6pm. having spent a long day in class and completely wired up from too many cups of tea, she called asking to go see a movie, a comedy. we decided i heart huckabee at 7:30pm in harvard square, and i told renata to come over. she called right back telling me a neighbor's cat had ran into her house and she couldn't make it leave so she might be delayed. i went down the street to boca grande to get some dinner burritos. walking back, renata caught me on the street and gave me a ride home. we ate our burritos, and i got a chance to show her a ball of flowering tea. renata tried some watermelon seeds, which despite the fact that she had problems opening them, quickly became addicted to their sodium-rich goodness.

arm in arm, we walked down to harvard square, to the theatre, where from across the street we could already see the long line. while waiting to buy tickets, a woman came out and announced that the 7:30 huckabee was all sold out. "what do we do now?" asked renata. "oh, you know what i want to do," i replied. "i think i do," said renata. bubble ice tea! but first we visited a bunch of stores looking for a pair of vampire fangs (for class project). cvs didn't have them (both stores), and urban outfitters didn't either (we were shocked that they were already selling christmas items). we finally found some at hootenanny. since we were already in the garage, we made a stop at newbury comics as well. it's true, i haven't bought a music cd in many years now, ever since i figured out how to download songs. places like newbury comics feel so foreign to me, especially since their customers seem to be getting younger and younger these days. renata however ended up buying 2 cd's, billy bragg and tracy chapman. when she asked me about one particular band, i told her i didn't know it because it wasn't 80's music.

eventually we made it to lollicup. renata, wanting to pay me back for the burrito, bought a thai bubble ice tea for me while she herself went with a green tea slushy. we waited on the couch, taking ugly photos of one another. "i'm mad at you," renata said, "you made it so i can't erase any photos." this is true. renata threatened to smash the camera if i didn't deactivate the erase lock. i had to wrestle the camera back from her clutches. when our order was ready, we took a few sips, before heading back out.

we went by wordsworth where it was dark inside, with just a few books left on the shelves. signs seem to suggest that today was actually their last day of business, and discounts ranged from 50% markdown to 65%, depending on which notice you were reading. renata kept on repeating how sad it was. we visited tealuxe, where we tried to find out if they had any of that flowering ball tea (they were waiting for a new shipment). we went next door to the cross pen store, the aroma of stationary intoxicating. curious george bookstore was our last destination. renata, being a schoolteacher, showed me the hottest titles in children literature and taught me about board books intended for babies.

we walked back to my place, where renata left for the evening. i called her later to remind her to set her clocks back one hour.

the specials - "a message to you (rudy)"