It’s a no brainer that geography tends to be the key factor in where one’s allegiance lies when it comes to sports. I grew up in an area that puts collegiate athletes on a pedestal higher than most anything. When this year’s St. Paddy’s Day fell on the same day as a Syracuse University basketball game, I saw something that I never thought could happen. A sea of orange covered my hometown city that day. If that happened anywhere else in the world with at least one Irishman there would have been rioting.
Maybe it’s because Syracuse is the only place in the world where green sits at the top of the traffic light so no one really cares about having to show their green pride. Likely it’s because most Irish-American’s don’t care why or don’t know why it’s the wrong color to be wearing on the 17th. But definitely it’s because sports fans are rabid, crazy, illogical, and emotional nut-jobs who put their teams over God, country, and family depending on the season or day of the week.
I’m not judging though. I put myself in that same category, but I’m lucky enough to own a shirt that would have pleased both County Kerry and Onondaga County that day. But that’s not why I bring up fandom reigning supreme over everything else. I mention it because my planned trip to Shea 2 tonight reminds me that I no longer live in a place where the allegiances are so clear cut (there are never really any Lemoyne fans back home, just SU fans who went to Lemoyne College), and I fear for what team my daughter- who isn’t even old enough to know what sports are yet- will side with.
I may be heading out to Shea 2, but I’m a Yankee fan. My brother is a Yankee fan. My father is a Yankee fan. Murphys are just Yankee fans. That’s the way it’s been since Dad showed up to this country and assimilated by learning to play baseball with other kids in a town where the Yankees minor league team played out of. That’s right, we’re talking a whopping two generations of fans!
I already have plans of continuing that bond with the third generation, but I live in Queens off of the 7. So what will happen to Baby Girl? Will she grow up to root for NY’s JV squad?
Do I try to convince my wife we should move to the South Bronx? Can I convince the MTA to extend the 7 to 161st Street? Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against the Mets. I met my wife in Queens after a Met game. Good things do come from Flushing, just not good baseball teams.
So please God, when it’s time for her to choose her pinstripes, let her go with the dark blue ones. And I swear, if You let her become a Red Sox fan like that rogue cousin of mine then she’s grounded forever and will miss all of her sacraments! What’s that, God? You can’t believe I’m putting such petty sports related things into my prayers? Well I guess you must have skipped over the “rabid, crazy, illogical” portion of this piece. And clearly you’ve been ignoring my stadium seat prayers for quite some time now!
by Sean Murphy
Ever put your team first when you know it should be a distant second? Any sports related imaginary parental dilemmas of your own? Share them in the comments section.