Saturday, July 01, 2006

Oh, (Come On) Canada

Those of you who have read this column for a while know that I continually rant about the obsolescence of Fenway Park. I still believe that. However, trust me people, it would be much worse if we were ensconced in Toronto's concrete and plastic fantasy world known as The Rogers Centre (AKA, SkyDome). Everything about this place screams, "Fake!" From the plastic turf (the warning tracks actually look like a mauve version of the aluminum Christmas Tree my family had in 1966) to the overly big and way too loud Jumbotron. The robust Blue Jay "crowd" totaled 17,311—on a Friday night for a very good team that is nipping at the Red Sox heels. Go figure. The local sports shows were leading with the crucial news that 2 guys were being released by the Maple Leafs.

Maybe the worst part of the Rogers Centre experience is the embarrassing "between innings" shenanigans they engage in to whip up the comatose Torontonians. For example, ex-Red Sox star John Olerud actually sat along the third base line and delivered answers to trivia questions about his past hitting feats. Yikes! Not to mention the almost indescribable seventh-inning stretch fiasco—basically some kind of combination calisthenics and Macarena. I promise I will never again complain about the genuine Fenway outbursts of fan enthusiasm (Neil Diamond, you are forgiven). All in all, if you like fake, come on up to America Lite—they've got plenty of it!

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