Joe Lavin

April 2006

From Boston Sports Review

Got Tickets?

Chances are, you don't have time to read this. You're too busy calling your brother's golf partner's co-worker's chiropractor who you heard might have Red Sox tickets.

"Hey, Jim, it's John ... you know, your patient's co-worker's brother's golf partner. Hey, buddy, how you been?"


"Hey, I was wondering if you might be able to hook me up with some Sox tickets?"


"Oh, I meant to say that I'm your patient's co-worker's golf partner's brother, not your patient's co-worker's brother's golf partner. Sorry, my bad."

"Yeah, I know. He called too. Look, I can't talk now. I've got a telemarketer on the other line."

Yes, it's spring, that beautiful time of year when all over New England people are getting in touch with long lost friends, relatives, guys they used to ride the train with, and many others who just happen to have Red Sox tickets.

Really, having season tickets must be worse than winning the lottery sometimes. It must be one long stream of "Hey, it's your cousin's dentist calling," or "It's Vinnie your high school classmate," or "Hey, remember me. I'm the one who stole your car last year. I'm just out of jail, and I was wondering if you have any Sox tickets."

Like many, I went online one Saturday morning in January and tried to buy tickets myself. After spending a delightful morning hitting the refresh button on my browser, I wound up with no tickets and a serious case of carpal tunnel. It used to be that I would go to three or four games a year. Last year, I was only able to get one ticket to a day game during the week. This year, so far, I've had no luck, though I am hoping that my plan to call up the ticket office pretending to be Ben Affleck will at least score me some tickets. (Question: How much better will the acting I do to impersonate Ben Affleck be than the actual acting that Ben Affleck does in movies?)

Admittedly, I was a little picky. I could have probably gotten bleacher seats, but I was aiming for the infield grandstand. Even then I passed up the chance to get obstructed view single seats. I know. I'm spoiled. I guess I'm just used to going to a game with a friend while not sitting behind a pole. Once, I even had the opportunity to get two grandstand seats next to each other. The only problem was that one of the seats was an obstructed view seat, and I think my friend would probably whine a lot if I made him sit behind a pole. Plus, it would be a pain having to tell him what was happening all the time.

It's really only a matter of time before the Red Sox start selling "obstructed view" seats out on Lansdowne Street. We keep hearing about their plans to increase seats and keep wondering where those seats will go. Here's the solution: obstructed view seats outside the park. Sadly, many fans would probably buy those tickets too. The only other way for them to find more tickets to sell is just to let fans stand on the field behind a rope like in the really old days. I'm sure that would go over especially well for Yankee games. Gary Sheffield, watch out.

It wasn't always this way. My father had season tickets in the early seventies and distinctly remembers when having Red Sox tickets wasn't at all lucrative. There were many times he would find himself outside the park on a game night, trying in vain to sell his tickets for face value. Granted, it also wasn't such an investment back then. While helping him clean his cellar, I came across his season ticket application from 1971. That year, his roof-box seats cost $266 per ticket. That was for 57 games. On eBay now, a ticket for one game sometimes costs that much.

Despite the high cost, I've decided to put myself on the season ticket waiting list anyway. Sure, I can't hope to afford season tickets now. However, by the year 2048 when I actually make it to the top of the waiting list, I just might have enough money. Of course, I'll be in my seventies, so hopefully they've done something about the legroom by then.

©2006 Joe Lavin

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