I’ve blogged before about the importance of donning team colors when you go to a sporting event, but this Braves super-fan has everyone beat. This past weekend in Atlanta, J and I saw an almost equal number of Boston Red Sox and Atlanta Braves fans in attendance at Atlanta’s Turner Field for the teams’ three inter-league games, but none of them were as elaborately dressed as this fellow with his pseudo-deerskin tunic and turkey feather headdress. If you’ve wondered where the Braves’ former mascot Chief Noc-A-Homa went after he was retired due to complaints of racism, I might have found your answer.
Even if you aren’t in the market for a colorful Native American costume, it can be expensive to wear your team affiliation on your sleeve, particularly if you buy an officially licensed team jersey with the name of your favorite player. And if said player subsequently leaves your favorite team, you’re left with a conundrum: what to do with your outdated jersey? When Johnny Damon left the Red Sox and signed with the Hated Yankees, true-blue Red Sox fans found all sorts of ways to “recycle” their old Damon jerseys, including this bit of sartorial revision:
If your favorite player left your favorite team under friendly terms–or if he at least didn’t sign with your arch rivals–you can get away with wearing his old jersey proudly. After the Red Sox recently acquired long-time Braves’ pitcher John Smoltz, J immediately bought one of Smoltz’s old Braves jerseys on eBay, figuring he’d wear it if we got to see the future Hall of Famer pitch for the Red Sox against his former team. As luck would have it, Smoltz didn’t pitch in Atlanta, so J didn’t taunt any Braves’ fans by wearing his John Smoltz shirt with his Red Sox cap. We did, though, see several Boston fans sporting jerseys for the Red Sox’ former short-stop, Nomar Garciaparra, with the lamentation “No-Mor” added above his name:
If buying jerseys old or new is still too pricey for your budget, you can always make your own fan-wear. If you do, though, be sure to double-check your spelling. Whereas a misspelled Washington Nationals jersey raised $8,000 at a charity auction earlier this year, wearing a home-made Jacoby Ellsbury T-shirt that misspells the name of your favorite Red Sox is just plain embarrassing.