That Lyric Little Bandbox

The Red Sox are celebrating the centennial of Fenway Park.

It is a grand event, because, as NBC Connecticut/WEEI sportscaster John Chandler so perfectly put it, the Red Sox owners are better party planners than baseball executives these days.

But there is no grander event than the very first time you visit the place John Updike called “that lyric little bandbox.”

Grandpa was a southpaw.

I remember the anticipation, the excitement, the warmth of the moment my grandfather led my brother and me through the brick ballpark gates and up the ramp to the field for our first game.

He’d sprung for box seats.  Nine dollars for the three of us!

That walk up the ramp was the best part.  The first few steps, all you see is the sky.  Bright blue.  Then the grandstand enters the picture.  Look at all the seats!  And finally, the field.  So green.  So perfect.  The place, the moment, just filled us up.

And when we were filled up, with hot dogs and Coke, we made our other big discovery.  The men’s room had troughs!  I remember looking up at my grandfather.

“Step right up, boy, and do your business.”

He was quite pleased.  We are, after all, from a long line of plumbers.

And Red Sox fans.


About Gerry

I've been covering Connecticut news and sports since 1974. I know, I don't look that old.
This entry was posted in It's all about me, Living in the Past, News, People, Sports and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to That Lyric Little Bandbox

  1. Rick B. says:

    Ger, I must say Fenway is a great place to watch a ball game. Many people defer to Wrigley Field; having been to both Fenway has it hands down. In fact people I know in Chicago all have a yearning desire to go to Fenway. That said I’m afraid I can’t join in the 100 year celebration, the reasons are multilayered this is only natural since I am a devoted fan of the “Evil Empire”. Some of the things that stand out in my mind are Graig Nettles vs. The Spaceman Bill Lee, Pedro vs. Zimmer. Mike Torres signing with the Bosox (we did get even though) and “The Hawk” Ken Harrelson being a complete Homer (Mercy!). I do admit we now have John Sterling who is equally obnoxious. There are only two centennial celebrations that I would be able to go to. The first one being the trade of Babe Ruth to The Yanks enabling Harry Frazee to put on a play named No No Nannette. It closed in two weeks, the other being the 100th anniversary of the last Red Sox World Series Title. I know neither of us will probably be around for that but in the back reaches of your mind you’re probably thinking he’s right.

  2. Li'l Em-Kel says:

    Nice going, Gerry. You pretty much nailed every boy’s reaction to his first look at a major league ball field. I would add only the eye-popping effect of the orange infield dirt to your description.


  3. chicksands says:


  4. TJ says:

    I miss the troughs!! I mean, I realize that sounds kind of ridiculous, but as you mention, they did make quite an impression…

  5. Jmar says:

    Troughs!!?? I just don’t get it. But I don’t really understand urinals either. lol As a woman, it would be a “cold day in H____” before I would EVER resort to that. Just saying. Loved your story, Gerry!

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