If Boston sports fans loved other things as much as their teams

McSweeney's reports:

— Just don’t talk shit about Seiji, all right? You come up here and you try to talk shit about Seiji - I don’t care if you got a Pulitzer or a MacArthur or a Pulitzer and a MacArthur and an award from the frigging National Book Critics Circle - I’ll lay you the fuck out..

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      While I am not a sports fan

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      While I am not a sports fan at all and think that the amount of time spent on sports here is ridiculicous and Ali think the sports franchises should contribute mightily to social / educational / humanity programs in the communities that support them - I have no idea what I just read. What / who is mc sweeties????

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      Maybe

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      you should be a little bit of a sports fan. Because then you might find out that they do contribute to the community, Probably not as much as you (you, anon, not the general you) want them to, but they do.

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      Maybe

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      You should use all that time not spent on sports and buy a book on sentence structure and then read it and then use whatever you learn when writing comments on the internet.

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      Easy to ignore

      I'm not a sports fan and find it's pretty easy to ignore sports in Boston. Sure, during a championship game you'll hear the cheering everywhere but beyond that it isn't any different from other cities.

      About the only time it's awkward is when people try to make small talk regarding some player. I just smile and say I don't follow the news. No one argues with that.

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      Awesome

      I'm going to get a Horvitz tattoo today

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      I liked this one

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      —Other day I went over to the Museum of Science.

      — How was it?

      — Well it was the fucking Museum of Science, so how the fuck do you think it was? It was superlative. It was a testament to our region’s proud tradition of rational inquiry.

      (They toast.)

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      Remember that time...

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      Remember that time I cut grad classes to see Joshua Bell play the Brahms Violin Concerto in D? Hell yeah. He blew it away. And for an encore? Guess what? He friggin' riffed on "Yankee doodle." So patriotic.

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      Maybe they have a point

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      Maybe the BSO and other city orchestras should have head-to-head competitions with Simon Cowell and Howie Mandel judging them on live TV. Then, at the end of the "season", they have a playoffs and someone's city goes home with a big silver trophy until the following season.

      Sports teams have fans because it feeds innocent tribalism. If you want to know what that would look like in the arts and sciences, then create the same framework first.

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      lack of competition isn't the problem

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      There are hundreds of competitions for classical and jazz musicians worldwide. I've always thought they should be televised too. There's no lack of drama a producer could capitalize on (some of the judges for those make simon cowell at his worst look like a friendly house cat) but I'm pretty sure they don't get televised mainly because of the general public's disinterest in pieces of music that mostly require pretty heavily focused attention for 10-20 consecutive minutes to really fully appreciate. They are however available on youtube etc but not enough people watch to generate enough add revenue for mainstream tv.

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      Individuals

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      The All-Star Game has a home run derby. Nobody really cares about that either.

      The BSO is an organization. Where's the BSO versus NYPhil competition? Is our orchestra better than New York's?

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      It's not in it's nature

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      While the performing arts are extremely competitive it's not the point of the thing so it will never work to attract people by branding it as competition. There has to be an interest in what it is at it's core. It would be like branding football as art to attract the art crowd. While there is a certain art form and nuance involved it's not the point. Instinctually people know that. Arts are more subjective and the intent is mostly not 'I'm better than the other guy' as measured by a fairly simple set of metrics inherent to it's existence like sports. Putting a ball in a basket is fairly easy to judge and is also the point of basketball. Doesn't really work with the arts as well because usually the point is not something as easily scored. Think about how subjective the finals for American idol or what have you are. Either contestant could win and no one would be the wiser and you're most likely not remembering their final performance or the arrangements anyway because the art isn't the point...the competition is. Although the 15 minutes of fame style of art that those shows cater to and create contribute to it's disposability as well. Classical and Jazz's shortcoming in the 21st century are that they require a lot of attention to enjoy at their core and the attention span for civilization as a whole is going in the opposite direction.

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      Umm the all-star game

      Umm the all-star game recently has been lagging behind in ratings compared to the home run derby

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      Quote from Roger Angell

      “It is foolish and childish, on the face of it, to affiliate ourselves with anything so insignificant and patently contrived and commercially exploitative as a professional sports team, and the amused superiority and icy scorn that the non-fan directs at the sports nut (I know this look - I know it by heart) is understandable and almost unanswerable. Almost. What is left out of this calculation, it seems to me, is the business of caring - caring deeply and passionately, really caring - which is a capacity or an emotion that has almost gone out of our lives. And so it seems possible that we have come to a time when it no longer matters so much what the caring is about, how frail or foolish is the object of that concern, as long as the feeling itself can be saved. Naïveté - the infantile and ignoble joy that sends a grown man or woman to dancing in the middle of the night over the haphazardous flight of a distant ball - seems a small price to pay for such a gift.”
      ― Roger Angell, Game Time: A Baseball Companion

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      Nice rhetoric but shallow

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      This sort of caring lasts a brief moment. Want to experience the emotion of caring which lasts? Volunteer in an activity that pulls a person out of the self. Ideally something a person is passionate about.

      Sports for fans obviously serves a function. Safe tribalism (albeit not for English football or for American football players), an appropriate time for yelling, opportunity to experience disappointment that has little lasting impact.

      Different from musical or play performances. It's about numbers, quantities, boiling emotion into a set of numbers.

      But for anyone who enjoys being a fan it's fun. But rhetoric about caring for the flight of a ball is romanticized silliness.

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      Roger Angell

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      ...providing the best possible comeback to what I thought was a freaking hysterical take on Boston. Clearly the author is a huge fan of sports, and our city. Roger Angell loves Boston too.

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      The 1980s called

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      ....they want their Bostonian back.

      Please, please, please help spread these facts. The reputation of our city depends on it.

      - The Boston sport craziness does not come from ACTUAL BOSTON RESIDENTS.
      - The sports fanatics are from Maine, New Hampshire, South Shore burbs, North Shore burbs.
      - Very few ppl living in Boston have the so-called "Boston Accent". Go to the South Shore and you will hear it a lot more. Please refer to this accent as the "Cow Hampshire, Massachusetts Suburb" accent from now on.

      its 2017. Bostonians are much more sophisticated now. Spreading these facts are the first step in Boston becoming a world class city.

      Go Kansas City sportsball team!

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      STFU

      I don't think I've ever typed those four letters before, but I couldn't think of a better place to use them than in a response to your post.

      You must be such a horrible, dull, annoying person in real life, I hope I never have to run into you.

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      Thanks For That Pete

      I remember growing up in a Boston neighborhood with my working / lower middle class parents and going to the MFA and just staring at the pictures on the wall and yelling out "Why The Fawk Is That Greek Guy Using So Much Black and Grey In His Depiction of A Spanish Priest?"

      I then went home and watched a marathon of Baywatch because it satisfied my lack of sophistication unlike the wicked smaht people from other places and their big degrees from the big colleges.

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      You don't need....

      ... a big degree from a big college in order to love and appreciate (lots of/most) great art.

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      Yes, please do

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      SoBoYupster is what my old mother would call "againsty". It is a singularly repulsive personality trait. Learn to lead with something else, SoBoNotFromHereAndProudOfIt -- you're tiresome and don't get invited to parties.

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      You claim to love Boston but

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      You claim to love Boston but want anything Boston removed from the city. I know plenty of Boston residents who are sports fans. From blue collar workers to the upper level execs in my company and anywhere in between. Now it's possible that your very small circle of friends aren't sports fans, but that hardly defines the whole city. It's more like a Pilates class group of people who are like minded as you. Snobs who are afraid of anything they don't have an interest in and think they are sophisticated (better than).

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      Yes.

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      I love Boston which is why I root against the sportsball teams. Whenever there is a home game the quality of life in the city drops.

      My neighbors (especially my elderly ones) shouldn't have to deal with suburban bros acting crazy. who wants to deal with... "doood, my grandfather grew up in Southie, that make me a bostonian. let's go into the city and get crazy for the pats game!"...

      i do agree that it is fairly easy to ignore sports here. there is so much going on in boston that has nothing to do with sports.

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      So people roam your

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      So people roam your neighborhood on the way to Fenway or the garden? And if you are so able to ignore sports why do you constantly whine about Boston sports?

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      stats?

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      Whenever there is a home game the quality of life in the city drops.

      you've got stats for that? Or just feelings?

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      No you don't

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      I love Boston which is why I root against the sportsball teams.

      No you don't, and no it isn't. You root against so-called "sportsball teams" because you are perverse, not because you love Boston or anything but the sound of your own voice.

      It's certainly possible to oppose something for reasons of love, but to do that, you need to oppose something that does harm, and you need to do so in meaningful ways. Neither of these is true in your case. You're just againsty. It's an obnoxious trait, and if you decide you're ready to grow up and get over it, here's a short video that will help you.

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      Ozawa was a Sox Fan

      He used to go to games in the 70's and 80's.

      The BSO had a big slump owing to some "oft injured" free agent signing out of NY; James Levine. Like that mutton head Clemens, things seemed to clear up once he got back to NYC.

      And yes, Andris Nelsons is fantastic. Huge upgrade for good money. He puts a lot of passion into his work.

      On Plimoth Plantation - The European actors stay in character and fret about the harvest and the threat of a Dutch ship attacking them.

      The Native American actors however are mostly Canadian First Nations people who are from Quebec. On the two times I've been there in the past 10 years they will absolutely talk hockey with you when no one else is around.

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      The BSO signing Levine was a

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      The BSO signing Levine was a bigger bust than Ramiro Mendoza for the Sox. And he was already accused of "unthinkable" acts before he even began here.

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      James Levine

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      was one of the best things ever to happen to the BSO, which saw its reputation drop precipitously in Ozawa's later years. Levine improved the level of performance enormously, and greatly broadened the range of things that the BSO does well. They used to be known as specialists in French music, which is very nice as far as it goes. Under Levine they became superb at Mahler, Mozart, and Schoenberg as well.

      Levine's schedule bordered on irresponsible, especially for someone with his health problems, and it's no wonder that he couldn't keep it up. However in the time he was here he did very good things for the orchestra. He may have even rescued it from oblivion.

      Andris Nelsons is a fantastic conductor, and we are lucky to have him. However I often find myself wishing that he had more of Levine's wide-ranging taste and understanding.

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      Another thumbs up...

      ... for Levine (if not his schedule and his health) -- who I admired all the way back to his time in in Chicago/Ravinia. But I won't sneer at Ozawa (or Nelsons). ;-)

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      Ask a bunch of the musicians

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      Ask a bunch of the musicians under 18 at Tanglewood how Levine "treated" them and then look up the accusations from the 70s. I wonder if the BSO was negligent in letting him around minors at Tanglewood?

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      I read it differently.

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      To me the joke wasn't "Ha ha, Bostonians sure are sports crazed! What if they were that crazy about arts and culture?"

      I read it as "Ha ha, Bostonians sports fans sure have an inferiority complex about NYC! What if their arts and culture patrons were the same way?"

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      He probably

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      wouldn't have been too good as a closer; he didn't really have the high heat. But he might have done quite well in middle relief. He could change speeds with the best of them.

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      Thank you for sharing this -

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      Thank you for sharing this - it was one of the most hilarious things I have read in a while. I was a little confused by most of the other comments. Were they being ironic?

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      I think a whole lot of

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      I think a whole lot of commenters never bother to click the link. They just comment on what they BELIEVE the linked post is about.

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      On the internet?

      They just comment on what they BELIEVE the linked post is about.

      That's unpossible!

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      Don't forget the Arts

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      Since they held the tour show of the Harry Potter costumes and props. With that display, they could talk about the tech involved in movie making (but really, it was more about the Potter Hype - from my take on attending).

      With the football display, they can draw kids in using hero worship and then talk about stats and physics (hopefully)

      With the movies they play, the laser shows they put on, yeah, Boston only cares about sports.

      Every year, from kindergarten to 6th grade, we had a field trip to the MoS. One of the highlights of the year, honestly.

      But hey, way more fun to bash 'spawts' (not even a good spelling rendition of the accent, IMO).

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