That Lucky T-Shirt Needs a Wash…Or Maybe Not

There’s a strange mental issue with sports fans that we here in Boston take to a new level.

Traditions in our public sports accommodations are known far and wide.

You have the seventh-inning ‘Sweet Caroline’ tradition at Fenway, and the Patriots ‘This is Our House’ chant that makes opposing fanbases hate us, and the low “Tuuuuuuuuu” that Bruins fans let out when the beloved goalie stops a 100-mph-slap shot.

But things get really weird in the homes of sports fans.

One of the biggest decisions right now for many fans in Boston is whether or not to wash the lucky shirt/jersey in the midst of two great Bruins and Celtics playoff runs this year.

I have a Bruins T-Shirt that I’ve worn on playoff game days for years. It’s the standard grey cotton T-shirt, but I got it in the 1980s when the team wasn’t at its best. It stuck with me.

In 2011, when they surged to the Stanley Cup, I put the old shirt on for the seventh game against Toronto. That win capped off an amazing comeback for the B’s and propelled them to the Cup. The next thing you knew we were cheering them as they went down Boylston and a giant Bruins flag flew from the old Hancock tower.

It was magic.

And I haven’t washed that shirt since that 2011 Game 7.

You see, the balance of the team’s performance rides on the back of whether or not I wear that shirt. Putting it through a wash cycle and the dryer could wipe out all that Game 7 magic, which of course, came from my T-Shirt.

I swear on games where I forgot to wear it, they lost miserably.

To love a Boston team the way a Boston person does is to understand that each individual fan’s actions determine the outcome of the game – no question.

So when we launder our lucky T-Shirt, we’re putting everyone in Bruins or Celtics nation at risk of losing out on another championship season.

I swear I won’t do it, no matter how hard my wife pushes.

I hope all the other fans hold their end of the bargain too.

Naturally, we’d like to see the players do well too.

My wife is a total Pats fan, and while I like ‘em, I can’t claim to have the years of rooting them on that she does. Truth be told, my heart’s on the ice.

So it was that she got a brand-new Patriots jersey for Christmas – a smart red one with her name on the back.

She wore it for the first time on the Super Bowl. It was the one where Eli Manning somehow completed that horrible pass to set them up to kill our undefeated season.

The $300 jersey went off to the dustbin.

I’ve not seen it since.

That’s how we roll in Boston.

  • • •      •      •

Not for nothin’, but I have some concerns about the music I often hear emanating from the cars that pass by on the streets.

At a stoplight recently, I heard enough of one song to know it was bad enough to embarrass a sailor in a brothel.

Mostly it’s the rap music where you hear such lyrics and lewd suggestions, but it isn’t confined to that.

How is it that popular music and rap music has escaped the microscope of the movement to purify how society looks at women?

The “art work” I heard at the stoplight last week discussed beating a woman (using a profane word), tying her up and doing unspeakable things. Shouldn’t we be marching against that too?

If anything influences young men to misbehave, it’s music that glorifies such things in a society that devalues positive male role models.

Count me first in line.

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