Fans Do Crazy Things

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A superstitious Cubs fan collects stories form Red Sox fans about how they broke the curse and finally won a World Series.

Fans do crazy things to help their teams win games. Just ask Alan Goy, creator of Through his website and an eventual book, Goy is chronicling the great lengths that Boston Red Sox fans went to help bring their team a World Series title for the first time in 86 years.

“I’ve always been a superstitious fan myself,” says Goy, a devout Cubs fan. “My sister and I never called a potential no-hitter a no-hitter. We called it a chicken sandwich.” In 2001, his superstition worked when he attended a no-hitter thrown by Bud Smith of the St. Louis Cardinals, the same team recently swept by the Red Sox. “Maybe the Cardinals are particularly susceptible to superstition.”

The day after the Red Sox broke the Curse of the Bambino and won the World Championship, Goy began collecting stories. Some of the stories are simple rituals: eating the same foods during the games, watching the games in the same bar or apartment, or not watching the games at all.

Other stories are more complex. One fan turned his master bedroom inside out, emptying his drawers out on to the floor, putting things that had been hanging on the walls in drawers, and turning everything on his bulletin board upside down.

Others are heartwarming. Take the story of a woman whose grandfather had attended a Red Sox World Series game in 1916. An article was written about him in the Worcester Telegram in 1986 which she held tightly in her hands throughout each game, knowing that this would be the year.

One fan simply prayed to her deceased cousin to relinquish the curse. How would that help? Her cousin was Babe Ruth.

Goy plans to compile the definitive collection of how millions of Red Sox fans helped break the curse, but his motives aren’t purely historical. “I’m a Cubs fan. We haven’t won in 96 years. If the Red Sox can do it, so can we, and I want to know how.”

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