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— Where BTF's Members Investigate the Grand Old Game
Sunday, March 04, 2001
Baseball is Ruining my Marriage
How Manny Ramirez brought joy and pain to one Red Sox fan’s home.
Baseball is ruining my marriage.?When my wife and I married, she knew I was a big baseball fan. She also knew it wasn’t just a passing infatuation; I loved the game.? What she didn’t know, however, is to what extent she?d have to share herself with my ?mistress?.
Through the first seven years of marriage, my wife and mistress coexisted comfortably. Then, Jim Furtado asked me to write a column for the Baseball Primer web site. I wrote a rough draft for a piece about where baseball fit into my life?s priorities.? The article was mostly tongue-in-cheek, but my list of priorities was based in truth. After finishing off the piece, I asked my wife to look it over. This simple request jeopardized the peaceful coexistence between wife and mistress.
After reading over my essay, my wife provided feedback on parts of the article that I wasn’t really looking for. I wanted input on grammar, construction, and spelling. She decided I needed help with the content of piece. She told me she didn’t like my list of priorities:
Now, anyone with children would surely list kids as the number one priority.? After that anything goes. My wife told me she didn’t appreciate being number 10.?She didn’t like being listed so far down on the list, in particular, so far down behind baseball. I tried to explain that, since she was integral to numbers 2,7 and 8, she was really listed above baseball.? She didn’t buy my reasoning. After much discussion and cajoling, I convinced her the article and list of priorities was written in jest. She was certainly number two on my real list of priorities. She was indeed ahead of baseball in the battle for my affection. The peaceful coexistence between wife and mistress returned.
Then came December 11, 2000.?
This day had all the makings of a red-letter day in the Santerre house.? That very morning, the doctor confirmed that my wife was pregnant with our third child.?This was happy news. When my wife told me, I broadly smiled, hugged her and said, ?We did it!? All seemed right in the Santerre house.
That same night, at about 10:30 PM, I got an e-mail from Jim which said Manny Ramirez had agreed to sign with the Red Sox. MY RED SOX!!? I quickly checked the online sports bible, ESPN.com, and was saddened when I couldn’t find confirmation.? Because nothing in sports is true until it is on SportsCenter, I began to suspect that Jim was playing some cruel prank. Although I’ve never known Jim to be cruel, he has perpetrated a few pranks. I called to question him about the news. He swore the news was accurate. I still wasn’t sure whether to believe him. Then, at about 11:35 PM, Karl Ravech uttered the three little words I had been waiting for, ?Ramirez to Boston?.?
Like a cat, I sprinted upstairs to my bedroom where my wife lay blissfully asleep, content with her status in my life. I flicked the lights on and began jumping up and down on the bed while repeating the phrase ?Manny?s coming to Boston!? over and over and over again, with a sense of glee that I had not experienced since Dave Henderson?s 10th?inning dinger in the 1986 World Series.?
After witnessing my, as yet, unprecedented display of elation due to the Ramirez signing, and after comparing that elation with the relatively watered down reaction to the baby news, she was not at all pleased.?Quicker than the time it takes a Pedro Martinez heater to arrive in a catcher’s mitt, my wife began to recount our prior discussion concerning my list of priorities in life. She then handed me my pillow and pointed to the bedroom door. The peaceful coexistence between wife and mistress was shattered.
After a night on the couch, I took the first step toward making peace with my wife. Although a week of buttock kissing helped return normalcy to the Santerre home, my Christmas gifta framed picture of Manny with a note saying ?I hope he will keep you warm.?indicated that this issue was not fully resolved. I knew right then and there more buttocks kissing was necessary to convince my wife of her place in my real list of priorities.
After a few months of chapped lips, an uneasy coexistence between wife and mistress has emerged. With my anniversary around the corner, I’m crossing my fingers the Red Sox won?t endanger the status quo by acquiring a number two pitcher at the wrong point in time. That’s because although Manny’s picture gives me great comfort, it doesn’t keep me warm. It also doesn’t help me when priorities 2, 7 and 8 need attending to.
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