Like many a fan of the Boston Red Sox, I maintain a certain amount of what I regard as healthy superstition. I've learned it's never a good idea for me to jump into watching the middle of a game when things are going well—or to give up on games when things look bleak. Of course, I realize that, in reality, my actions can't possibly affect the outcome of the game, as i am neither in the batter's box, nor on the field, nor on the mound, nor in the dugout at game time. However, the lingering pessimism of the pre-2004 Sox fan still eats away at me, telling me somehow that I am at fault—that something I have done has, through a thousand or million indirect repercussions, led to the Sox's woes.
For instance, was I rude to someone on the street, whose resulting malaise fed a low-grade anger which led him to take it out on an unsuspecting T worker, which then led to a late train and a pissed-off worker at Quizno's, who left off an extra slice of meat off the cheesesteak that Gonzo would eat before game time, which caused him to miss that slightest extra iota of strength that caused what would have been a home run to deep center to be one of Fenway's screaming outs instead? You get the idea—anything and everything could be responsible in some way for the Sox's outcomes, if you try hard enough! (Or perhaps it should be "if you're mental enough.")
So, how does that bring us to the Sox's current troubles? Well, in this case, I have to accept that the fault lies squarely at my own feet. My crime? Letting the "Schrödinger's cat" dilemma go on too long, and failing to check in with my Red Sox. I don't even have the excuse of not knowing this would happen, because all of this had happened before, and I had the horrifying premonition that all of this would happen again.
What's that, you say? How could I know this would happen? Well, the last time I spent such an extended period of time without access to the Internet was way back in 2006. In fact, it was in late August of 2006. Right around the time of a critical, super-long series at Fenway. Against a hated rival from the southeast. In a series that turned into an ugly rout, and saw the loss of the Captain. See where I'm going with this? The last time I couldn't follow the Sox for five days, the Sox's "Boston Massacre" happened.
Now, to be fair, there was nothing I could do at that point in time. I had just moved to a brand new town to start a new job, and it being small-town America, I had no means of communication with the outside world—no Internet, so no MLB.tv; I was in BFE, Southwest, so no chance whatsoever at NESN. I had to wait two weeks (in a town with 25,000 people, no less!) for cable service to be activated, so I couldn't even get ESPN (blech), and even phone service sucked (my cell phone? not so smart down there!). I didn't even have the ability to mooch off of my work connection yet, as I didn't have the right access to the building. So, all in all, it sucked. I couldn't follow along with what had happened, and the worst-case scenario came to pass. And it was all my fault!
Flash forward to this past weekend. On a confidential mission in an undisclosed location (check with TheLoneDavid about why I can't tell you where I am this week), I had to go without Internet access for five whole days. And it's not like I didn't try to get online. Anywhere I could reasonably try to get my iPhone online? Failure. Network was down. Could not connect an iPhone. Out of connections for the day. And so on. I even managed to get my hands on a friend's USB wireless card. Except it needed to be recharged, and the office wasn't open for another few days to go add the extra money.
So, yeah, I accept that the latest run of bad luck—the injuries to the pitching staff, the at-times anemic offense, and the latest disaster in the Tim Wakefield saga? All my fault. I'm truly, truly sorry. And I seriously tried to solve the problem, but nothing worked.
I think we've all learned a valuable lesson from these two cautionary tales: no more traveling to undisclosed locations where you can't get Internet access during baseball season!
And perhaps a little confession is good for the soul. What have you done that could be responsible for the recent skid?