Wednesday, September 16, 2009


On the heels of the ESPN Boston fiasco, I came across another abomination: Supahfans Streetwear. This is where some of those awful Boston sports T-shirts that you may have seen around, or that I probably saw you wearing today, come from. The design elements of the amateurish election shirts on the home page are almost as poorly chosen as the athletes' names in the imaginary — and frightening — Boston sports electoral tickets.1

I did some more snooping and found another site that's almost as bad: Chowdaheadz.2 The dog bowl seen in the image above is from Chowdaheadz, and I believe it's an exact replica of the bowl from which Zdeno Chara eats his dinner each night.

This description on the SupahFans site sums it up for me: "SupahFans Streetwear is a t-shirt company designing smart products that speak to your New England soul. Kinda like those If-you're-not-from-here-ya-wouldn't-understand concepts that mean just a little more to you because we're on the inside together." No, I understand it. You're proud of spelling stuff wrong.

1. OK, I guess they mostly make sense. But again, I don't get the Lucic obsession in this town. I hate to admit it, but there could be some half-decent Bruins to pair with Thomas on a fake election ticket. Lucic isn't one of them.
2. Note that it's never enough to spell "chowder" like "chowda." Here, folks go the extra mile and add a z.

Monday, September 14, 2009

ESPN Boston? That's dumb.

Today, a helpful tip from Garden Pest Nithin: "I'd like to point out that on the main page of ESPN right now after an amazing weekend of sports, the cover article is not the TD tour de force of Drew Brees, the incredible shot by Roger Federer, or even the always safe go-to article about Brett Favre. Rather, the main article is the creation of a new site, to provide information on all things Boston sports. Now as a fan of the Red Sox (albeit less so after the facade of non-Steriod use has been shown wholly false), the focus on Boston as the second city in the US to receive an ESPN website (Chicago #1) may prove that this blog is indeed on to something."

Well put, Nithin. Note: Click here or on the image for the official Garden Pest take on this whole thing.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

More sightings; Redskins day 1

[Post-game update: Well, that was a fun NFL season.] I went to Burlington, Mass., yesterday so I could have a meal at the nearest Chick-Fil-A1 and to escape the hustle and bustle of downtown Cambridge. The meal was delicious (chargrilled club value meal with large waffle fries and a classic sandwich in addition), but this Papelbon sighting ruined it. I also saw Milan Lucic and Marc Savard jerseys. Savard is a good hockey player, and it was a kid wearing the jersey. But Lucic? The guy was in Abercrombie & Fitch.2 Lucic is an awful player. These fans don't make any sense.

Anyway, Comcast or the NFL or someone messed up, because the Redskins-Giants game is supposed to be on TV here, so I'll watch it at home. That does go against the whole Garden Pest philosophy of showing up at local places and rooting for out-of-town teams, but since the people here don't really like the Giants anyway, I wouldn't be making a wortwhile point.

1. Tied with In-N-Out as the best fast food joint in the world, according to U.S. News and World Report. Penn is third (Penn can't crack the top 2).
2. I wasn't shopping at Abercrombie & Fitch. I just saw the guy in there.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

You can't swing a dead cat...

Today's lunchtime walk was spoiled by the Papelbon jersey you might be able to make out on the guy on the left. Then, at the gym, someone had a green shirt that said "Papelbon's Pub" or something. I guess I just don't get what's so special about this guy. If he even makes it into a game, he only plays for around one inning. How hard is that? I can guarantee you that if you open my closet, you won't see a stash of Gregg Olson jerseys.

Meanwhile, I learned while doing my monthly check-in that the Orioles swept the Red Sox in their recent trip here, which just ended yesterday. (I meant to actually go to the games, but I found some horse tranquilizer, so I used that instead.) And by "swept" I mean, of course, an "Orioles sweep" — that is, that the Orioles recorded at least one hit in each game against Boston. Things are looking up.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Behind enemy lines

It's hard rooting for the Washington Redskins in Boston. Not because I might get attacked for wearing a Redskins hat around town or for supporting them in a sports bar. It's hard because "rooting for the Redskins" probably means "digging for potatoes" to most Bostonians. It may well be the case that no one is supposed to care about the Redskins — even the Redskins don't want you to like the Redskins. And their owner, Dan Snyder, sometimes makes even my baseball team's owner, Peter Angelos, look like Steve Jobs.1

But I support my teams anyway, so I'm mostly looking forward to the Skins' season opener against the Giants this Sunday afternoon because the Patriots aren't playing at the same time. That means there's a slight chance that a TV in a sports bar in the whole Boston area will accidentally be tuned to the Redskins game for just a few minutes before the bar's management discovers that it meant to show either bass fishing or St. Louis vs. Seattle. 2

1. Other times, Angelos makes Snyder look like Jobs. It's a vicious cycle, but Jobs tends to win.
2. My money's on bass fishing.

Monday, September 7, 2009

The mission

Unlike most of you, I don't just adopt the sports teams of any town I move into. New cities actually have the opposite effect on me — I grow to loathe their teams more and more each year. There will always be some franchises — like the Pittsburgh Penguins, the New York Yankees, the Dallas Cowboys, and the Pittsburgh Penguins — for which I'll save my most darkest, most negative feelings. But as I begin my fourth year as a resident of the Boston area, its teams — especially the Boston Red Sox, the Foxwoods Patriots, and the Boston Bruins — have gradually but surely infiltrated my top 10 list of hated sports clubs.1  All those hats, all those jerseys (I've seen more Papelbon shirts this week in my Cambridge neighborhood than Cal Ripken2  jerseys in my entire life), all those winning streaks and championships... it's enough to make a loyal but tired follower of Baltimore/D.C. sports go into hiding. But I had to make a brave decision. As a large person once asked, "What makes a man? Is it being prepared to do the right thing, whatever the cost?"

As fate would have it, the Bruins will play my Washington Capitals in their first game this coming hockey season, at TD Banknorth Garden. I have my tickets, and this year, I vow to be the best (TD Banknorth) garden pest I can be — supporting my own team in a hostile stadium, fully decked out in Caps garb. As you can probably guess by the seriousness of this issue, the posts on this blog will all have something to do with the general theme of standing up for what you believe in, against all odds and despite what those around you think. I witnessed the Capitals' Alexander Semin do it last season, humiliating supposed superstar goalie Tim Thomas here in overtime.3 And this year, and in years to come, I vow to follow Semin's example and suck the lifeblood from my host city's sports consciousness.

1. The Celtics are basically exempt. That's because my little brother, Doug, and I went to a Celtics game. I'm also OK with the Lowell Spinners for the same reason, but Lowell is far enough away from Boston anyway, right?
2. The greatest player in the history of sports, even though baseball is not technically a sport.
3. Watch goalie Thomas do his best Bonnie Blair impression at the end of the clip.