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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

How To Love…Your Teams


Fenway Patk, Photo by Haley Van Orman

“So, you’re from Boston? Tell me what suburb you’re really from.” That right there is one of the classic “Condescending Wonka” memes that are sweeping the Internet. The phrase applies very well to sports fandom, because when it comes to being a true Masshole, there are more posers then true believers. There are too many people who grab a game with their dad’s season tickets, booze up, and head out to the Garden to pretend to be real fans for a night. If you’re one of those people, I can help you out. Here is a guide to the basics of being a good Boston sports fan.


Oh, your sister’s getting married? Sorry, the Sox are on at 4:05 and you cannot miss them. This may seem a little harsh, but being a great fan takes some sacrifices. Telling people what you miss for the sake of a game can get you major fan cred, and sometimes can get you on TV if you make a poster exclaiming your sacrifice at a game. Personally, I don’t engage in that practice, but I respect any fan who’ll give up important life moments to catch a regular season game, especially if a playoff berth has already been locked up.


This might seem silly, but what you wear to a game can hugely determine whether or not you’re a real fan. Ladies, wear the real team colors. No pink jerseys, no sequins please. If you’re at a Sox game, for example, any jersey or T shirt is acceptable, although a Jacoby Ellsbury jersey is very predictable, so you might want to stay away from that. Guys, honestly, less is more when it comes to jerseys. No face paint, no stupid costumes. Rolled-up sleeves are acceptable and encouraged, but going shirtless, even on a hot day, shows that you’re trying too hard to fit in. The only exception to that rule is if you have some sort of team-related tattoo on your shoulder/ back/ chest area. In that case, flaunt it. Show how much you love the team through your ink. That will surely get you some quality time on the jumbotron.


You’re at a game, not church. Loosen up a little. Gone are the days of people attending games in suits and cocktail dresses. Class has basically left the ballpark. Swearing is totally acceptable as long as it is not directed towards someone bigger than you. Also, I, as well as many other fans, am guilty of faking a Boston accent at games. It’s a classic “When in Rome” scenario. You should be able to have a full Boston sports experience, and that includes screaming “You’re a bum” at the top of your lungs in a thick Southie voice at least once in the course of a night.

These are just three things. We haven’t even touched on food (it’s gotta be hot dogs), or transport (the Orange Line for Bruins games), but these are the essentials. If you follow these rules, and maybe try to get a good sunburn, you are well on your way to being a true Masshole.

If you have any rules that you want added, please send them to [email protected]. If they’re not stupid, we’ll put ’em in the paper.