Recently I’ve spent time visiting at Mass General, and as in all hospitals there is a lot of waiting around. One night while I was there, a fellow vistor spotted my Red Sox hat and started talking about growing up a Brooklyn Dodgers fan. From there, detailed discussions followed of baseball well before my time. Stories about meeting Duke Snider and Pee Wee Reese. Comparing recollections on Bobby Thomson, Ralph Branca and the Shot Heard ‘Round the World. Of specific teams, players, plays and dashed hopes from 50 years ago. And about different grudges with the Yankees. It struck me what great escapism this was. How many subjects let strangers connect so easily with a sense of shared history and mutual passion? While they exchanged amusing anecdotes the Red Sox game on TV slowly chewed up the hours of waiting.
Now, of course, had this gentleman been a Yankees fan it would have been completely different situation.