October 22nd, 2007

Let’s hear it from everybody who’s tired of the 2008 election: so how about it, baseball fans?

I don’t know about you, but I’m bone tired of the 2008 election already.

I can’t remember ever feeling this level of fatigue so early in a campaign before. Maybe in previous years I didn’t follow politics so closely, although by the 2004 election I certainly did. Maybe in previous years the elections didn’t begin quite so early. Maybe in previous years the candidates were more inspiring.

Or maybe not. At any rate, there’s something about this year that makes me want to put down the entire topic and only take it up again after a year has passed. That would seem about right; discuss it a couple of weeks before the election. After all, how relevant can what is said today—a year early—possibly be?

And yet, that doesn’t stop the relentless coverage. If you go to today’s Real Clear Politics, for example—a site I usually find very interesting, with a nice assortment of links—you’ll discover that, of the twenty-eight featured articles, thirteen are about the election.

It seems like overkill to me. Despite being a political blogger, I wouldn’t ever charactize myself as a political junkie. They seem to be some sort of special breed. I’ll get interested when the time comes, but that time seems to me to be a long and winding road away.

Till then, there are more pressing things, such as my beloved Red Sox—speaking of long and winding roads—who’ve come from behind to win the American League championship, which means they’ll be going to the World Series for the second time in four years.

The last time—as anyone who follows baseball even the slightest bit is well aware—they won the whole thing, in a fabulous and momentous Breaking of the Curse, the significance of which only fellow long-suffering Red Sox fans (with the addition, perhaps, of those who follow the Cubs, whose agonies are hardly comparable in terms of curse duration) can truly appreciate.

Now the Boston sportswriters are actually getting a bit cocky:

This must have been what it felt like in the early days of Fenway when the Royal Rooters ruled and the Red Sox were regular hosts of baseball’s autumnal showcase. From 1915 through 1918, the Sox won three World Series. They did not win again until 2004, the beginning of a magical October run that has resumed over the last four days.

I’ve written previously, here, about my baseball fandom, the what and the why and the wherefore. Once I got interested in baseball—savoring its grace and beauty, its suspense and slowness—it was clear I was a born Red Sox fan. Despite having grown up in New York in the heyday of the fabled Yankees. they had never really grabbed my heart; they were too slick, too predictable as winners.

No, the underdog Red Sox were the ones for me, and even their 2004 win, celebrated here by Globe sportswriter Dan Shaughnessy, hasn’t changed that. Back in 2004, I was one of the Boston fans who couldn’t believe that the long-awaited impossible had finally become not only possible, but real:

”This is like an alternate reality,” said Sox owner John W. Henry, soaked in champagne (Mount Pleasant, 2003 Brut Imperial). ”All of our fans waited their entire lives for this.”

Or, in my case, for about thirty-five years.

This year it’s different, of course; I doubt there could ever be a sports victory as sweet as that of 2004. But still, winning again would be pretty good.

redsox.jpg

24 Responses to “Let’s hear it from everybody who’s tired of the 2008 election: so how about it, baseball fans?”

  1. Trimegistus Says:

    We’re all tired of the election. Here’s a question: will even the Democrats’ fanatical base burn out before November? Or will the Stalingradesque nature of the campaign drive out everyone but the fanatics?

  2. Juneaudraig Says:

    As a Cape Cod expat — GO SOX!!!

  3. Teresa Says:

    I have been strenuously ignoring politics among many other things lately. It’s way too much, way too soon. I’ll start to pay more attention a few months before the election. Until then, I know there are enough interested parties to pick up on all the bits and pieces – to drag out at the end and make the campaign somewhat interesting. ;-)

    As for baseball… let’s hear it for the sport that hasn’t bowed to the stupidity of instant replay. I realize that sometimes this works in favor of the opposing team – but I prefer it that way! (I’m a Cardinals fan, not a Sox fan – although I’ll cheer them on if only to keep all my New England friends from jumping off the Tobin Bridge. *grin*) Now if only they played all the games outdoors instead of having those “domed” stadiums… Heh.

  4. Roman Says:

    In the middle of the night, grown men (and women) wandered the streets of Boston and surrounding suburbs aimlessly. In a sleepless stupor they were trying to absorb the reality of the Sox’s 2004 win. Just think… not since 1918. Sleep was impossible and the excitement was just way too much. Many fans had to repeat this ritual night after night until their heart rate steadied out to normal again.
    I’ve got my sneakers ready for a repeat of that rare magical (but stressful) nocturnal phenomena.

  5. bird dog Says:

    Which is more escapist, politics or baseball? This is the question I often ponder. Then I give up on that knotty question, and ask myself what I am escaping from, into false and ultimately meaningless drama.

  6. Cappy Says:

    I’m in Cleveland. Tired of both. On call this week so won’t have to waste time with World Series.

  7. Barb Says:

    I’m a Yankee fan. GO ROCKIES!!! hehehe!!! ;-)

  8. s1c Says:

    Go sox, southern boy who fell in love with the 75 team due to some guy named Rice and oh, yeah that ROY and MVP guy named Lynn!!

    Go SOX!!

  9. Lee Says:

    Hey s1c – I was at game 7 of the 1975 World Series – the Sox lost and broke my heart. I will never forgive them…go Rockies.
    BTW – met Freddie Lynn at a charity event here in Orange County a few years back. He is a great guy!

  10. Uh-huh Says:

    Though I am sick of hearing about 2008 elections, I’m a Phillies fan :/

  11. njcommuter Says:

    We are in a record high-pressure presidential race.

    The MainStream Media hopes their misrepresentation of Iraq and their imbalanced reporting of scandals stay under the lid.

    The HillyCat spins up the dirt machine to mesmerize her base so they don’t see her own scandals.

    The Donky Congress scales the Slopes of Slander to preserve faithful attendance at the Wholly Left Revival Meeting.

    The Republicans struggle to remain “relevant” so they are not forgotten when people finally tire of the Democrats.

    Dubya’s bet the Republican Party on Iraq turning so far around that the center will stop trying to forget it ever existed.

    And the RNC is riding the polls barrel down the Dubya falls.

    It’s an exacting caculation of voter fatigue. When they keel over exhausted, do they land on a Red issue or a Blue one?

  12. greeneyeshade Says:

    I wouldn’t say the Cubs curse is shorter than the Red Sox.’ The Cubs haven’t *won* a World Series since 1908, when teams still played in wooden parks! Could this be the Revenge of Fred Merkle?

  13. jimmy Says:

    Neo,

    Maybe you’re tired of the election because it’s already been going on for a f****n year already!! Totally absurd. Who wouldn’t be tired?

    The Sox. The year I moved to Boston (1967) the Sox won the pennant and went on to lose the series. On their win Kenmore Square literally burst into flames, cars turned over, cops with dogs (a scene I’d see on numerous occassions over the next four years), and high-spirited delirium ruled the night.

    37 years later my daughter started her freshman year, living just up the street from where I had been dorm sheltered. And we all know what happened that year.

    So, yes, let’s see them do it again! So, for at least a few moments, we can bridge the red and blue gap. If only for a week or so.

    Go Sox!

  14. Roland Dodds Says:

    You are tired of the election simply because you are:

    1. supporting a candidate who won’t win.

    Or

    2. supporting the candidate who will win.

    I for one, am supporting Frank Moore!

  15. schnargley Says:

    We are winning Iraq after all, the Sox take the series, and Hillary loses.

    All seems right with the world again, in more ways than one.

  16. Danny L. McDaniel Says:

    When Ronald Reagan announced his intention to run for President on November 15, 1979 the pundits said he was announcing way to early. The amount of money needed to run a compettive campign requires a candidate to annouce the day after the last election. That is the sad state of affairs in American Presidential politics. It has turn into a geniune industry; full of consultants, props, media experts, speech writers, etc. I wish it could get back to looking more like a high school class president election.

    Most Americans haven’t even started to pay attention to the election next year. The only people growing tired of it are the “pols” who wish it couldn’t get here quick enough.

    Danny L. McDaniel
    Lafayette, Indiana

  17. Mark Says:

    Agree with you on the political end… not much of what is said today or since the first candidate opended their mouths mean much. Except for the fact that, like terrorists, candidates (especially democrats in primaries) have a tendency to tell people exactly what they are going to do.

    As for the Sox winning the series:

    Rockies in 6 :)

    Yes, I’m a Rockies fan.

  18. njcommuter Says:

    Yes, but if you want to know what a candidate–or a terrorist–is going to do, don’t listen to them only when they talk to you. Listen to them when they talk to your friends and to your enemies–and to the people who are undecided. Do they tell the same story to strong and weak alike? Do they promise the same to all, or do they promise contradictory things to different audiences? And to which are they most likely to be loyal?

    If the politician breaks his campaign promise, is it because the other party blocked him, or because he was being loyal to his real base, the ones who get him millions of dollars?

    Are you dealing with a candidate–or a guerrilla–who stays bought, or one who serves a new patron every season?

    The parallels are ugly.

  19. Election Exhaustion « Ennuipundit Says:

    [...] neo-neocon is feeling drained from the ceaseless campaign. I don’t know about you, but I’m bone tired of [...]

  20. Americaneocon Says:

    It is a long drawn-out campaign. This year’s primary season is more frontloaded than ever and trends in the campaign finance system have made raising ever larger warchests a necessity. The media loves the horse race coverage, because frankly, it sells. We get tired of it, and then come back for more, especially when some big new development comes along.

    I’m a political junkie, but by necessity: I teach this stuff everday, in addition to my daily posting at the blog.

    Hillary’s big this year, of course. So that might be driving the intense focus, but there’s no GOP annointed-one, with Dick Cheney out of contention.

    While our process is agonizingly long, we do at least have some clear competitive processes in this “invisible primary,” especially in the money game and poll standings. The Republican nomination is up in the air, which makes it incumbent for us neocons to report on and influence the race.

    Congratulations on Boston winning. I’m an Angels fan, but once Boston swept Los Angeles in the ALDS, I threw my support to the Green Monster Boys for the World Championship.

    Have a great day.

  21. Laura Says:

    Hey Neo! I was SO glad to see this post! Baseball is so wonderful, I just love it; now more than ever. Baseball to me offers a few hours of respite from the divide in this country, from the war, from everything but the much beloved game.

    How bout it Neo, fellow Sox fan! Are you learning how to dance like Papelbon?!

    Great post!

  22. Mark Says:

    njcommuter:

    The parrallels aren’t just ugly… they are downright scary. You do bring up good points about ‘who is the audience’. At least I give Bin Laden credit for being consistent in his message (the 9/11/07 tape partially excluded).

    My prediction for the WS:
    Game 1: Rockies win 7-2
    Game 2: Sox win 6-3
    Game 3: Rockies win 12-1
    Game 4: Rockies win 5-4
    Game 5: Sox win 2-1
    Game 6: Rockies win 8-5

    How about it folks? Some specific predictions from you?

    Cheers :)

  23. Richard Cook Says:

    Late to the party though I am I must have input. I hate, hate, hate the Red Sox. I hate them with the blood hate of a 30 year Yankee fan. Slacken not Sox nation. Our time will come again.

  24. David K Says:

    Living in S.F., it’s hard to tell which is more spectacular… the wholesale demise of our sports teams (all of them) or the liberal sinkhole swallowing up entire towns (Oakland being the latest to go – who thought the idea of a Muslim bakery appealing?).

    I’m viewing politicians thesedays in much the same way I view my favorite team, the *clear throat loudly* San Francisco Giants. I mean sure they suck, theyre badly run, they are even an embarrassment… but, what am I going to do, root for the other guy???

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About Me

Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.
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