WHAT DID I LEARN IN 2017?

It’s  a few hours ,no several  hours, before we say good morning, good afternoon  , good night, and good riddance to 2017.

So much has happened not only all over the world , but in the United States  as well.

I’m  not one and never have been  one to make New Year’s  resolutions . 

It’s  not that I  don’t think that I could keep them, the whole idea of making them seems like a real  waste  of  time  to me.

I’m not knocking those of  you  who  do make them though.

Do you boo.

While looking at the other social media  platforms  that I follow ,  I saw this question . 

What  did you learn in 2017?

I learned a few things, like how to cook spaghetti  a lot better than before.

I learned to appreciate  New York  City  a lot more than I did when I was younger.

All those museums  that I found boring as a child now as an adult I want to visit as often as I can.

I learned to appreciate and cherish family members that I  haven’t  seen since the  1980’s.

Most of all the main thing that I’ve  learned in 2017 is that I’m  not  as young as I used to be, so when this 64 almost 65 year old body breaks down and gets sick, that’s  God’s  way of telling me one thing.

“Slow it down before it breaks  down”

I hope that in 2018, it’s  a lesson that I  won’t  forget and will always remember  from now on.

Happy  New  Year and a safe and  healthy 2018 to all of  you.

Advertisements

I  DIDN’T  GET A PARTRIDGE  IN A PEAR TREE FOR CHRISTMAS  

December  25 is officially  over ,  but I’m  still thinking  about Christmas  songs . 

You might recognize the song that goes, “on the first day of Christmas ,  my true love gave to me- a partridge  in  a pear tree.”

I don’t  remember  too much of the sing, but I’m  going to  change the words.

A lot.

My true love didn’t  give me  anything  nice on the first day of Christmas . 

Instead, for the first  day of Christmas ,  this was my present  from the city of Boston ; 

A white Christmas ,  chills, a sore throat ,  coughing ,  sneezing ,  and wheezing . 

While many people  were ripping the covers off their presents, I was putting  covers over my body.

I was shivering!

The rest of my “12” days of Christmas  weren’t  any different . 

No, let me stop lying.

It went downhill from the first day of Christmas . 

My second day of Christmas ,  I was on a Peter Pan Bus along with a few other  people  who  were in the same  shape that I was.

Most of us were wrapped  up  warmly, coughing ,  sneezing and freezing  all the way from South Station  Bus Terminal  in Boston  to Port Authority  in “The Big  Apple  “.

(More on the Peter Pan bus ride to and from Boston  in a later post.)

On my third day of Christmas ,  I didn’t  have ladies dancing, there were no pipers piping, or lords a leaping.

I had doctors and nurses taking my temperature ,  my vital signs and doing xrays to make sure that I didn’t  have pneumonia . 

My “last” day of Christmas, day number four, was spent like days one thru three.

I’m  under the covers except now I’m  taking medicine and drinking lots of fluids.

There will be no five thru 12 days of Christmas  because  I just know it’s  going to be like days one thru four, just saying.

I once wrote a post about my favorite holiday . 

Christmas  wasn’t  it, and now I know why.

I didn’t  get a partridge  in a pear tree for the  first day of Christmas  or any of the other days of Christmas . 

Instead ,  I  got a box of  tissues, chicken soup, orange juice, a blue surgical mask, and a bottle of  cough syrup.

Merry Christmas  to me!

OH WHAT A CHRISTMAS  

The tree is sitting in the living room, there’s  not that many presents under it and not that many people to ooh and aah who gave what to whom.

It’s  Christmas   2017 in the city  of  Boston, and guess what?

It actually  IS a white Christmas . 

Snow is falling from everywhere and I can’t  even see Boston Logan Airport from the window, even though  it’s  very close to the place that I’m  staying in.

Christmas  is  usually a time to eat, be with the family and of course ,  watch all those basketball  games that come on every Christmas .

This Christmas , though, I  can’t  do any of those things.

My Christmas  present  from the city of  Boston was to get sick.

Very sick.

I couldn’t  eat, hang out with the family or even watch any basketball . 

(That’s  how I know that  I’m  really sick when the SportsDiva can’t  listen to or watch a sporting  event  )

Tea, Motrin, Toast and Soup were my companions for Christmas . 

As I was leaving to go back to New York  the next day, it took me a long time to pack.

I finally did it at 2:30am  and then went back under the comforter.

Thank you Boston for your Christmas  gift to me.

OH WHAT A CHRISTMAS ! 

SPORTS FANS ARE THE SAME IN THE UNITED  STATES  AND  CANADA , RIGHT?

If you  happen  to  live outside of the United  States  or  Canada ,  you’re  probably  saying to yourself, “why do these Americans especially ,  care so much about this thing called ‘The Super Bowl  “?

The rest of the world  gets excited about  soccer’s  World Cup ,  but people  in the United States  and Canada, by and large, really could care less.

Some of us and our good neighbors to the North, actually are interested  in the World Cup.

But not really.

The  Super Bowl ,  which features the two best American  football teams, is quite another story.

It’s  not just about the commercials  that some companies  pay an arm and  a  leg gor, nor is it to see the big name entertainers  that do their thing at intermission ,  which football fans call “halftime  “.

Some of us have placed bets not only who’s  going to win, but by how many points  one team is going to LOSE by.

Many of us like to watch  just for bragging  rights . 

We can’t  wait to tell our friends or coworkers that hate our team that we are the champions (pardon the pun.)of the National  Football  League for the wwhole  year.

Many people  who aren’t  Canadian  or American  want to know just  what  it is about sports that get us all worked up and do really stupid things.

What does it mean to be a fan and aren’t  fans of all the four major sports the same?

Nope, and the Sports Diva is here to tell you the difference  between  the baseball, football ,  hockey and basketball  fans in the United States  and  Canada . 

Some of them might be  familiar  even if you don’t  live in either the United  States  or  Canada .

I could start by telling  you about the  baseball fans who attend and watch, “The Subway  Series” games between  the  Yankees  and the Mets for bragging  rights  in New York  City . 

I could even try to describe  the nastiness  between  hockey fans in Canada, that is  “The Battle  of  Alberta” between  the Calgary  Flames  and Edmonton  Oilers  hockey teams . 

This rivalry got so nasty that at one pojnt, two politicians from Edmonton  and Calgary actually  got into a fistfight  over their teams . 

One may wonder just what is this nonsense all about?

You may think to yourself ,  people shouldn’t  get worked up over other people bouncing  a ball, hitting a ball, throwing  a  ball, or slapping a hard black disc over the ice.

But some of us do, and yeah we paint our faces in the team colors and wear funny looking wigs in the team colors as well.

You might think all of us sports fans are crazy but you don’t  see the difference between  fans of the four sports.

It’s  a lot of screaming and yelling, you say.

It’s  not really that serious.

As  a  sports fan myself, I can tell you that fans of baseball, hockey, football  and baseball are very different . 

I’m  going to tell you how different they are.

Baseball  is the sport that most Americans  grew up watching, and many of us were first introduced  to the game by our grandfathers  and father’s  or in my case, my aunt.

Baseball  isn’t  the most  popular  sport in this country, because  a lot of fans find it very boring.

As a result,if you go to a baseball  game ,  most of the fans of baseball are older and more traditional . 

They don’t  want any changes to  their sport at all.

A lot of them are by and large ,  over the age of 40.

It’s  also one of the cheapest  priced sports tickets to buy . 

Baseball  fans by and large do support their teams, but fans of both New York teams, Boston Red Sox,  Chicago  Cubs, St.Louis Cardinals  and Philadelphia  Philies take it to the extreme.

These  cities   live and die by their teams.

Even Canada has gotten  into the act.

In hockey mad Canada ,  it’s  the Toronto  Blue  Jays  baseball  team  that’s  known  as  “Canada’s  Team.”

Basketball  is the sport that many young people  gravitate  towards.

To say that they’re  excited about  it  would  be  an understatement . 

It might be due to the flash and glamour of the  sport, not to mention many of it’s  stars . 

In many cities though the average  basketball  fan is being priced out of his arena, even if you’ve  been  a fan when the team was pretty bad.

If you happen  to  attend  a basketball  game  in  either the  United  States  or  Canada ,  don’t  be surprised  if most of the “fans” sitting in those seats are either actors, actresses ,  politicians ,  other sports stars  or rap singers.

Madison Square  Garden in New York  City  and Staples Center  in Los Angeles  are famous for their “celebrity  row  ”

Basketball  fans do love their teams  and will spend  a lot of money on team apparel ,  but attending  a basketball  game  now has become  less fan friendly  and more like an event that one goes to be seen at.

The last two  sports fans  are very similar  and they have some of the most passionate fans in any of the major sports.

It’s  Hockey  and Football . 

Hockey is popular in Canada where most of the fans actually played hockey themselves . 

It’s  not so popular  in the United States ,  but in the places where it is popular ,  you have some of the most rabid fans ever.

Hockey fans, no matter if they’re  in Canada or the United States ,  aren’t  only passionate  about their sport ,  but their favorite team and players.

(I should know, I’m  one of  those  passionate hockey fans!)

Male and female  hockey fans love  talking about hockey not on  to other hockey fans but to non hockey fans who don’t  seem to get it.

Hockey fans will be buy every hockey apparel  that they can, whether it’s  the team they support  or even a player they like who plays for another team.

Hockey fans will ride and die for their team and they will even tell you why their team is better than yours.

Depending  on where you  are, hockey tickets  are fairly easy to get.

This might be because  a lot of  Americans  don’t  follow  the sport . 

Unless you’re  in Canada then tickets are fairly expensive ,  even if you do go on a website like NHL  Ticket Exchange ,  in which season ticket  holders give away their seats because  they can’t  use them.

Lastly we’ve  got Football ,  which is the most popular  sport in the United States . 

Most of us in the country know someone  who played football  and if you happen to be from the Southern  part  of the United States ,  especially, Louisiana ,  Georgia ,  Florida, Alabama ,  Texas or Mississippi ,  not only did you play football in elementary ,  high school  and colkege, there’s  a good chance that   your grandaddy and daddy also played . 

Like hockey, football  has many female fans and you’d  better believe  that a lot of us know the sport  and really aren’t  shy about yelling at  the referee for calling a penalty on our  team.

We will also swear and curse at players on our own team if one of them drops the ball, just like we see male fans do.

Football  games are the most expensive  sporting  events  to attend ,  but the stadiums  are ALWAYS sold out, no matter how bad your team is.

Many fans are season’s  ticket holders and they really don’t  want to sell their seats unless the team really is doing bad.

Football fans, like their hockey  counterparts ,  take being a fan to a whole  another level . 

Let’s  call it one step below cray cray, shall we?

Only a football fan would tell you proudly that their team is special because they’re  known  as  “America’s  Team”.

(That’s  the Dallas Cowboys ,  by the way and yes, they are known as “America’s  Team”)

Like hockey fans, football  fans will not only support their team at home, but they’ll  make that trip to another stadium and well, act the fool.

At a hockey game, depending  on the team, you might see one or two fans wearing the jersey of opposing teams.

Football  fans, being the step above crazy that they are, you’ll  won’t  be able to count how many fans you’ll  see wearing the other teams jersey.

There’s  THAT many of them.

Also unlike the other sports ,  you will NEVER see a football fan wearing the jersey of a team that isn’t  playing.

Going to  a football  game  is like going to  a Halloween  party ,  even though it’s  not.

You’ll  see fans wearing “Cheesehead” hats at a Green  Bay Packers  game.

(Wisconsin  is the leading producer of cheese in the United  States  in case you weren’t  aware.)

If you go to an Oakland Raiders  game, you’ll  see fans wearing  every sort of scary attire, not just the Raiders football jersey.

(Being in the midst of the Raiders fans isn’t  known as “The Black Hole  ” for nothing.

Unfortunately ,  like hockey ,  football  is known not only for the nastiness on the field, but in the stands as well . 

It might be because  of  the  amount of  alcohol  served at both games, but it’s  more of  a case of, you know , people  not acting like they’ve  been  there before.

So the next time you see a game in the United States  or  Canada ,  whether it be on TV or in oerson, and you’re  under the  impression  that  fans are all the same, no matter what the sport is, think again.

THE BEST DECISION THAT I EVER MADE

It was  two years  ago  this December  that I  made a decision  that I  can honestly  say that I never looked  back  and  and asked myself ,  ‘why did you do this?’

I didn’t  even  ask myself, ‘what  on earth was I thinking ? ‘

No, it wasn’t  the start of writing my blog  or even deciding to write a blog.

Nor was it the first  30 Plus  Teams  Tour  that  I  had ever taken.

It was much more personal  than that . 

It was the day that I walked  into  my  supervisor’s  office and announced that I was giving  my two weeks  notice . 

Even though I had been  working  for this particular  car company  for only six years, it was time to go.

I had suffered a mini stroke just a year before after my weekend  12 hour shift at the company . 

I will never forget  that  look on my supervisor’s  face when he asked me,

“How much is the new company  that you’re  going to  be  working  for going to be paying you? We’ll  match it.”

Rather than feel insulted that NOW that I was about to  leave the company ,  I was being offered more money, I actually  wanted to bust out laughing  in his face.

I didn’t  though.

The company  could  NEVER match the amount that I was going to receive  from my decision.

The questions  from my supervisor  didn’t  stop there.

More questions  were to follow . 

“What company  are you going  to  be  working  for?”

“Are you going to be working  for the airlines again?”

“Are you moving  back to Las Vegas  or Boston?”

If I was moving back to Boston, I was informed  that the company  had a branch there ,  not far from where I had lived in Boston, and I could work there.

For less money than I  was making in New York  City ,  mind you.

My answers to two of the questions  were, ‘no I wasn’t  moving back to Boston  or Las Vegas ,  nor was I working at JFK  for Delta Airlines  again.’

I was, however, very happy to tell him the name of the new company  that I would be working for.

The V.H.R. Company.

You’ve  never heard of it?

It has millions of “employees” all over the world . 

It’s the Very Happily  Retired Company.

I had been working since 1974, and  I  had gotten to the point that  where I now knew the answer to the question  that I had asked my brother and  sister  in law  just two years earlier.

‘When do you know that it’s  time to  retire?’

I had turned 62, was going on age 63, and I was collecting early retirement  money already.

(In the United  States ,  you can collect Social  Security  retirement  benefits at age 62.)

It wasn’t  that I had gotten lazy, I   was tired and if having  a mini stroke wasn’t  a sign that it was time to  go, I don’t  know  what  was.

I knew that it was time to say goodbye to my working career and move onto another chapter of my life.

While a lot  of  my coworkers wished me luck, and said that they wished that they could do the same thing, a lot of them wanted to know how was I was going to survive  on a fixed income, which I  now have . 

Many  of them knew how much I loved to travel, not to mention all the sporting events  that I attended . 

They assumed that since I  wasn’t  going to be getting a steady paycheck, I wouldn’t  be  able  to maintain  my “lifestyle.”

News flash,by the Grace of  God ,  and as you can tell by a lot of  my posts, the Sports Diva  is doing okay  in the  travel department . 

I’m  not  doing too shabby in the going to the sports events department ,  either.

Most of all, a lot of them worried that I was  going to  get bored by not working everyday.

I guess everyone  forgot that we live in New York  City ,  where in the words of actress Myrna Loy, “If you get bored in New York  City ,  it’s  your own fault , ”

It’s  been two years  since I  became  the newest “employee  ” of the V.H.R. Company, and I’m  not going to  lie.

It’s  been one of the  best decisions  that I’ve  ever made.
What about you?

What’s  the  best  decision  that you’ve  ever made?

Was it leaving your job?

Was it moving to another city, state, or country?

Was it getting married  divorced ,  or that decision  to have a child?

Let me know by dropping me a line in the comments  section  or  shoot  me  an  email  at sportsdiva63@gmail.com.

Once again ,  thank you  for  liking  and  supporting  30  Plus  Teams , 30  Plus  Dreams . 
SportsDiva64