Category Archives: Sports

Back to the Dog

So, I said I’d come back and tell the back story on the name drama of our new puppy.

Krystal named a stuffed animal Boston about a year ago, and I commented that I thought it was a great name for a pet. She initially wanted to name our chinchilla Boston, but we ended up going with Joey, which I think fits him better.

When we started thinking about puppy names, I began a list of names. And then I read “The Art of Raising a Puppy” by the Monks of New Skete in which they talk about choosing a name. They suggest a one or two syllable name ending in a long vowel sound (e.g. Nemo, Cookie), or a short a sound (e.g. Anka, Olga). I realized our list needed to be revised, so I went back to the drawing board and came away with about 10 names each for boy or girl pups.

So when we arrived at the house to look at the puppies on Sunday, Krystal and Belle wanted to know their names. The owner explained they really weren’t named, “except for these two”. Those two were named Matt and Pip. Krystal identified Pip as her favorite even in the sleeping pile, and as it turns out, that is the one we are getting. I had brought my list of names with us, but Krystal had ears for Pip only. I was sure I was going to see my name choices disappear.

So we got home and I read through all the names again, and it’s funny how once I gave over some control to the girls that it clarified my favorites. And I was pleased when it was a fairly easy selection to choose Tessie.

Now, I’ve made no secret of my love for the Boston Red Sox, and as it turns out, Tessie has a Boston connection. I showed this video to the girls after we chose the name, and now they love the name, and the song.

Who Says Sports aren’t Real Life?

I’ve made no secret of my love of New England sports teams, particularly the Red Sox and Patriots. I’ve been a Sox fan since I was a child, through all the pain of coming *this* close for so many year, until finally winning our first World Series in 2004. And then again! In 2007! It’s a magical time! And of course the incredible run the Patriots have had this millennium, which sadly finished last year with a heartbreaking loss in the Super Bowl, which I still have not gotten over. Nope, I haven’t. I can’t read any articles about it, I can’t listen to any announcer speak about it. Still. And after the loss last year I made the decision that I was going to be less emotionally involved this season. Ha, yeah, right, we’ll see how that goes!

And then yesterday the unthinkable, yet inevitable happens. Our star, our hero, one of the best players to ever play the game, played half of the first quarter in the season opener, and suffered a season ending injury. And the jaws of all New England dropped and uttered a collective “Oh no!” Followed by, “What do we do now?”

I can’t help it, I care. But I am also glad I chose this season not to get (as) emotionally involved. The pundits have apparently written my team off for the year. As if Tom Brady is a one man football team. Seven years ago Tom Brady was a backup when he was called into duty when Drew Bledsoe, the starter at the time, was hurt in an early season game. We won our first Super Bowl at the end of that season, and a legend, and a dynasty, were born.

I feel sickened for me and for every New England sports fan at the news that Tom is out for the season. But mostly I feel badly for Tom, who is a true athlete, a worker and a lover of the game. I also feel for his backup, who will be starting his first football game since high school next week. Matt Cassel has been Tom Brady’s backup QB for 4 years now and has not been all that impressive. He did a fine job yesterday, but I fear it was an anomaly rather than an indicator. He’s in a unique spot – he has a chance to come in and shine, like Brady did 7 years ago, but he could also be the goat for all New England as the season slowly goes down the drain. It won’t be his fault, but way too many fans, and sports writers (local and national) will see it that way.

Aw, who am I kidding – I am emotionally involved. But I think for me it’s more about the human element right now than it is about winning and losing.

So I’m wishing Tom a successful surgery with a quick recovery and to come back next year better than ever. And wishing Matt the peace and strength to do his best always, and that as long as he does that, he can hold his head up high no matter what anyone might say.

Go Patriots!

Go Sox!  (who are currently beating the 1st place Tampa Bay Rays 3-0 in the 7th inning!)

Catch a Tiger by the tail…

I am not a golf fan.

However, I found myself riveted to the ongoing updates of today’s 18-hole playoff at the US Open between Tiger Woods and Rocco Mediate (who??).  And to the credit of both men (though especially Rocco), even that round ended in a tie, forcing a one-hole sudden death playoff.

Which Tiger won.

Congratulations Tiger, for winning your 14th major title, which we all knew you were capable of.

And congratulations Rocco, for being an unknown who could give Tiger a real challenge. I’m sure you’re disappointed at losing, but wow, to go so far against a golfer like Tiger Woods has got to be something you can be proud of for the rest of your life.

O – Outside at last

Running is my exercise of choice. I don’t get to do it as much now as I used to, or as much as I’d like. But if I’m going to set aside time to exercise, running seems to give me the biggest bang for my sweat bucks. I’ve taken aerobic classes, and spinning classes (well, make that class – I only did it once) and kickboxing classes. And while I enjoyed parts or even all of them, nothing makes me feel as if I’ve actually worked out the same way running does.

When I started running in earnest, it was to keep my weight in check. Actually, it was so I could eat whatever I wanted without gaining weight. And it worked that way for a long time. Right up till I turned about 30 or so. I ran a few road races to keep it interesting, and did a marathon for charity in 2000. Which I’d love to do again. In all that time, I always ran outside. I’d usually get up early, before work, and head out from my house for a 3 mile loop, even during the winter.

Due to my parenting responsibilities, the only time I can run anymore is during my work day. Also, in my old age I’ve gotten slightly wimpier about the weather. And since there is a small gym at my employer that I can use, I’ve been using the treadmill for my workouts since about November, when the weather just got too nasty to think about going outside (not to mention hauling that quantity of workout stuff back and forth everyday). I hate the dreadmill (as someone I know has dubbed it) with all my being, but I hate what lack of exercise does to my body and my psyche even more. So I’ve been doing it.

Until today, when I finally ran outside for the first time in nearly six months! It was glorious to be out in the sunshine. Running outside feels different from running inside, and my workout stuff wasn’t as sweat-sopped as usual. It was a very nice change of pace to feel the sun and the wind. I’m looking forward to a lot more of this in the coming weeks and months as the weather (hopefully) gets nicer and nicer.

Post Super Bowl

It’s only now that I can begin to write about it.

The Patriots did not win Super Bowl XLII. I can’t believe I just wrote that. I feel like I am living some bad dream, and any minute now I’ll wake up on the morning of February 3rd and we’ll have a Super Bowl that evening, the one where the Patriots win. The one were Junior Seau finally wins a ring. Four in seven years. 19-0. Finally wiping that smug face off Mercury Morris and the rest of those 1972 Dolphins. Perfect.

Alas, it was not to be.

I am sad. It does hurt. And this has caused me a lot of introspection these last few days.

Sundays in our house from September to January are football days. I plan our activities around being home in time to watch the Pats play. Towards the end of this year’s season, when we were marching towards an undefeated record, every game took on that much more significance. And I was not always pleasant to be around. I am very physical during critical times in a game – I jump up and move around, I wave my arms and shout at the TV. B helps out by shouting, “We need a touchdown!” If anyone tries to talk to me while a play is unfolding, I shush them (this despite the fact we have a DVR and I can easily rewatch if necessary).

And this loss has made me rethink this.

It’s not that I’m bitter about losing (though I am, a little). It’s that I believe the whole thing became more important in my life than it had any right to. And that’s on me. Because I do not play football. Any win or loss by a professional sports team has nothing to do with me. I enjoy watching, and I enjoy rooting for my team. But to have let it occupy a piece of my heart? Well, that’s not right. I actually had trouble sleeping Sunday night, and I am not the only person I know to say that!

So, congratulations to the New York Giants, who certainly played the better game on Sunday night. I am going into football silence for a little while and cuddle with  my children a bit more. Adjust those priorities just a tad, doncha know.

Odds and Ends (mostly odd!)

My mother just got back from a three week trip to China. As she was recounting her trip to me, she said “I didn’t even see any Chinese people there. I think because I have Chinese grandchildren and I just don’t see them as different.”  [My two girls were born in China]  I can’t even begin to tell you how offensive I find this! While I certainly am not consciously thinking “race race race” in my daily dealings with my children, I also don’t deny it. They ARE Chinese. And no one would ever look at them and not see it! My mother scares me in that she is not willing to even acknowledge this in her own family.

On a related note, we were visiting at a family who I know casually today. K is friends with their daughter, and B and I were just hanging out for a few. I said something to B and the dad misheard me and thought I had spoken in Chinese. He said he was very impressed that I had learned Chinese. We got that cleared up (sadly, I only know a few words), but he then asked me, in all seriousness, if  B was “born knowing Chinese.” To which I replied, “were you born knowing English?”

And I just have to mention my 13-0 Patriots who showed a tremendous effort against the Steelers today. I’m still on an emotional high!

Weekend Over

Back home today – work and school resume tomorrow – insert heavy sigh.

We spent most of today in the car, driving the 400+ miles from our friends’ house back to our own. It always feels soooo  much longer on the way home. And today, since so many others had also gone away for the weekend, we had the pleasure of sharing the road with far more cars than is usual. At one point I pulled into a turnpike rest area for a break and to get much needed gas. The line for gas was so long that I decided to get back on the pike and get to the next rest stop, 30 miles away. This worked out very well, since I only had to wait for one car to finish filling up. Unfortunately we did run into stop-and-go traffic for a bit after that, but phone calls with a couple of friends helped pass the time (yes, I wore an ear piece!).

Seems like I had other things I wanted to mention today, but frankly, I’m so exhausted from being away from home and the drive today that my brain is simply not engaged. My Patriots are playing tonight which I intend to watch – we’ll see how far into the game I make it – it may depend on the halftime score!  Go Pats!!

Patriots 24, Colts 20


I am a crazy football fan.

Patriots beat the Colts today, 24-20, in a real nail biter. As a Patriots fan, I’m thrilled! But man, my heart was beating so hard during the entire 3+ hour game that you would almost think I was playing the game myself. I kept having to take deep breaths to calm myself, and even my kids had to keep reminding me to “Breathe, Mom, breathe!”

Earlier in the day I attended the baby shower of a friend, and most of us in attendance are also Pats fans. There was discussion around the possible final score and of those who expressed an opinion (including the experts, I might add), pretty much everyone thought the Pats would win by 14 or more points. I was never sure before the game, and it took till there was only 3 minutes left in the game before I could relax, knowing we would pull it out. We were down 20-10 in the 4th quarter, trailing in the 4th for the first time all season. It looked bleak. But two touchdowns in four minutes clinched it.

Next week is a bye — they deserve it.

Then on to the pursuit of an undefeated season, hopefully capped off by a Super Bowl win!  Go Pats!

First NaBloMoPo Post!

Yep, it’s November 1st! My first NaBloMoPo post! So far, I don’t have a theme, but maybe I’ll develop one in the next few days. I guess I first ought to catch up with the goings-on of the last few days!

The Boston Red Sox won the World Series!! I’ve followed and loved the Sox since I was a child – no bandwagoner here. It was a true thrill to witness it not just once in a lifetime (that would be 2004), but twice (so far!). I wish my father were here to enjoy this. Even though I was not emotionally invested in a sweep, I am glad it did end in four games, as I’m not sure I could have withstood staying up so late another night! Seriously, the games start so late, and last so long. Only the strong (and dedicated) fans survive! I read somewhere that the commercials only add about 10 minutes to the total playing time. It claimed that the length of games is in the long at-bats we see today. Batters have to step out of the box after every pitch to readjust their gloves, pull at their shirts, hike up their pants, take a few swings, bang on their cleats. Takes forever. And the fact that endless foul balls can keep a batter up indefinitely. Baseball might want to consider taking a look at that!

Just a few rants:

  • Scott Boras announcing Alex Rodriguez will opt out of his contract with the Yankees during Game 4! WTF!?!
  • Tek – what have you done with that ball? Don’t go all Mientkiewicz on me!

Actually, that’s it – only two! I also want to congratulate the Colorado Rockies for a fantastic season and for their performance in the Series. They have a bright future!

World Series


This is the text of an email I just sent to a friend who lives in Colorado:

Hi Cammie!

I sure hope you are doing better – I think of you often!! And it takes the World Series for me to finally get around to letting you know! I don’t know if you are a sports fan, or follow baseball at all. Having been born and raised in Massachusetts, I am a huge Red Sox fan. I used to keep baseball scrapbooks as a pre-teen, and the 1975 World Series (Red Sox vs. Reds) was something I followed minute by minute. (Yes, I really am that old – I was 12 that year). Anyway, I’ve lived and breathed the heartache caused by the Red Sox my entire life — until 2004 of course, when we finally, deliciously, won it all!

Which brings me to THIS year! We’re in it again, and playing what I have to assume is YOUR team! It’s exciting to play the team of friends. I must confess to not knowing much about the Rockies – I’m certainly an AL girl with a strong East Coast bias. But I understand this year’s Rockies team is pretty special, and is on one heck of a roll!

I’m watching Game 1 as I type this, and while of course I hope the Red Sox win this one tonight, as well as the next 3 (or at least win 4 before the Rockies do!), I wanted to say hey, and wish your team a great series as well.

Hope you, Brett and each and every kid is doing great – our love to you all!