fimmtudagur, mars 19, 2009

the putative red sox fan

There's a guy I see almost every day at the school where I work. He's a student, but unlike the other Icelandic students around him, he's always attired in 90s-era American college gear: baggy plaid shirt, jeans, and a baseball cap. And the cap is always a blue cotton "B" hat with the "hanging sox" logo stitched on the back.

Now, it's not often in Iceland that one sees the good ole "B" hat, the uniform of many a modern MBTA rider. Just like everywhere else in the world, in Iceland the "NY" swastika is ubiquitously stitched onto caps and jackets: that marquee of a dying club sported by clueless locals who, when pressed, thought that they were just supporting "New York" in general. Much like a lot of that team's in-city support, these people aren't remotely fans of baseball, the game. And that team logo has been printed so much it's lost most of its value. Kind of the Icelandic króna of sports graphics.

But on the other hand, the "B" logo: now that's the mark of quality. That's the mark of a person who knows who he is and where he is in life. The wearer of the "B" hat belongs to a select group, an inner circle that can recognize its own members the world over.

After months of not having a good shot to talk to my Icelandic twin, I finally ran into this guy in the hall today. I was ready to make the connection. I smiled and said, "Great to have another Sox fan in the building."


"The Boston Red Sox, the baseball team?"

"I'm not a baseball fan, no."

"So how come you're always wearing their hat?"

"This is just a comfortable hat."

So much for the tight-knit international brotherhood.

...but he did tell me he's tried three times to see a game at Fenway, but the boys haven't been in town when he has. So there is some hope yet.

Also, this isn't the first time I have written about the Olde Town Team. Related posts from the IR archives: nation expands 2004 fan promise


Blogger Farbror Willy said...

Easy on the big words man!! "Putative"??!? What the fjárinn does that mean? (I know now since I googled it)

But good post.

Blogger JB said...

Funny that you should be the first commenter on this post, as the character in the "B" hat is actually quite a bit reminiscent of you. I was even thinking of using the adjective Villi-esque to describe him but then thought better of it.

I had to look up "putative" too. I thought of the title before I began to write the post (as happens sometimes) and first had to be sure I was saying what I wanted to say.

Anonymous Nafnlaus said...

Entertaining post. You elicited one guffaw.

Thanks for reminding me about this word. It's been a while since I've heard it and I don't think I've ever used it myself. I think I use the word 'episcopalian' more.

Blogger Dave Elder said...

Funny post! I'm doing the Boston-to-Reykjavik move in a couple of months, so I'll be sure to bring my Sox hat along.

Blogger JB said...

Dave, we could always use a new member of the Icelandic Nation. Look me up when you get here!


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