Nostalgia | My childhood coming down piece by piece.
February 2, 2009
The New York Times recently ran an article about the demolition of Shea Stadium. For those of you who don’t know, or are not a native New Yorker as myself, Shea Stadium was the home to the New York Mets for over 40 years. Within the last few years they have been building there new stadium “Citi Field” right next door in the parking lot. Now, this may be about sports and while I’m not an avid sports fan, I still do try to follow what happens with the Mets. I may not know every players name, but I always like to check up to see how there doing. The only reason I feel this attachment to them is not because they are the best team in baseball (anyone should know that!) but because as a child I used to go to there home games frequently with my dad.
My family, especially on my father’s side is all about sports! My dad is a die-hard New York Mets and New York Jets fan. Starting when I was just 1-years old he would put me in full on head to toe Mets apparel (the hat, the shirt, the pants, and even the bib!) When I reached the age of 4 he would begin to take me to the New York Mets games. I didn’t know what was going on but I remember having fun. The games and the people were always so exciting. His job always had season tickets for both the Mets and the Yankees, but since he was the only Mets fan in the company along with his boss, the tickets were pretty much split between the two. Therefore I went to Mets games more times than I can count. This tradition of going to Mets games continued for most of my childhood, all the way until my senior year in high school!
I think I sat through Mets games in every weather element possible. As I grew older I began to enjoy the people around me. They were loyal Mets fans. As the underdog team in New York, I could sense that Mets fans were more down to earth, always there to support their team no matter what. While the Yankees continue to buy there way to world series, I felt Mets fans enjoyed the game for what it is and there was always good sportsmanship no matter what.
I can say that today I still consider myself a Mets fan. I don’t judge the team by there stats, by there world series championships, but instead I like them for being true people. Shea Stadium to me was about an experience in my childhood. That is what I remember the most. The stadium itself was unique itself. I was not the nicest looking stadium, but it had its on qualities. Each level was a different color. I always sat in the front row seats of the mezzanine (green) section, box 4 to be precise. It was located behind home plate slightly towards third base, and I always felt it was the best seat in the house because you could see everything! The scoreboard was huge and so was the home-run apple directly behind the center outfield fence. Airplanes would roar over the stadium as they took off from nearby LaGuardia Airport. At every game the Jumbo-Tron would display an animated airplane race with the four different colors (Oranges, Blue, Green, and Red) representing each section. The planes would race around the city and and the first plane to reach Shea Stadium wins! (Somehow green would always lose but that seems to be a stigma that follows me!) However, after September 11th, the airplane race was converted to a car race. It was just a great experience and I would really get into the excitement. I would start yelling and thats normally something I don’t do!
I’ve been to games in other stadiums. I’ve been to New York Yankees games, San Francisco Giants games, New York Knicks games, New York Jets/Giants games, and nothing compares to New York Mets games. I can’t imagine Citi Field having the same excitement. Of course they needed the new stadium, Shea was just becoming to brittle. I welcome Citi Field, and of course I will try going to a game in Citi Field in the future. Maybe this time I will bring my dad instead. I know that being away in college for the past four years he misses doing these things with me. I should definitely return the favor.