As many of you know, I am a huge baseball fan, more specifically a huge Mets fan. During the season, since I live outside of Philadelphia, I order the baseball package offered by DirecTV and watch just about every Mets game. In recent years it's become somewhat of a father-son bonding experience. Junior Bear has even become a Mets fan like me. I haven't forced this on him (swear it), I think he just likes what I like right now.
In addition to the Mets games, I like watching just about any baseball game that's on and Junior Bear will watch along with me. One of the channels offered with the baseball package is a "mix channel" that shows eight games on one screen. Junior Bear especially likes this channel and will stand at the TV and ask me who he should root for in each game.
This mindset of his has carried over into the baseball playoffs. He feels a need to root for one team over another even though I keep telling him it doesn't matter who we root for because the Mets aren't playing (something I am used to saying this time of year).
Well, being Mets fans in Philadelphia we have a special dislike for the Phillies. And being a Mets fan anywhere, I also hate the Yankees. Actually, I don't really hate the Phillies, it's more the fans I don't like. But when it comes to the Yankees I hate everything about them, fans, players, everything!
So, you can see how this upcoming World Series is going to be one of the toughest... no, THE toughest World Series I have ever endured. I have pondered the question since the Phillies beat the Dodgers in the NLCS who I would pull for, the Phillies or the Yankees.
I have played out every argument (I won't waste your time with all the particulars) and I keep coming to the same conclusion -- nobody. I don't want anyone to win. I actually want... never mind I won't say that, but point is I want both teams to endure a painful loss. A very painful loss. Problem is, there can be only one loser and I am sick over that.
As a result, I am trying to ignore everything about this series. Usually a faithful sports radio listener, I have resorted to listening to elevator music to just ease my emotions. I try to keep a positive attitude at home. I mean, Mama Bear, Peanut Bear and Cookie Bear are Phillies fans and I don't want ruin it for them, but it's very hard.
It got even harder last night when Junior Bear asked me, "Dad, we like the Mets so we have to root for the New York team. Will you root for the Yankees with me?"
I wanted to tell my son I supported him and his decision, but I had trouble. You want to say, "Sure son, I'll root for the Yankees." But I didn't. I didn't say no, but I didn't say yes either. I said, "You can root for whoever you want."
Don't get me wrong, I'm happy he doesn't want to root for the Phillies, but I can't accept the rooting for the Yankees. How could any self-respecting Mets fan root for the Evil Empire? Well, I can't do it. I won't do it!
I imagine this is the just the first of many decisions Junior Bear will make that I won't agree with. Part of your job as a parent is to let your children live their lives and make their own mistakes so they learn from experience. Let it be known right now, that this is the first mistake I am letting Junior Bear learn from. Trust me, I'm not happy about letting him do this, but at the age of six, it's better he learns now rather than later. I just hope this doesn't scar him for the rest of his life.