After watching the Giants struggle for a few innings of Sunday Night Baseball, my son announced, “I want the blue team to win.” I like to think that I’m an open minded parent – I’ve painted my son’s toe nails before, my daughter loves toys typically marketed toward boys, I don’t bring out the soap when my daughter occasionally swears, and I wouldn’t freak out if either came out to me as gay. I want my kids to grow into the people they want to be. Or at least I thought so until my son decided to root for the Dodgers. That is the line in my parental supportiveness sand.
“WHAT?! THE DODGERS?! We NEVER want the Dodgers.”
“They’re winning,” he explained. “The Giants only have 1 and the Dodgers have 3.”
“You are a fair weather fan! And the Dodgers are the worst!”
“What hat did you wear while outside today?” my husband asked. “Who won the World Series last year? Not the Dodgers!”
“But the Giants are losing.”
Within a few minutes, the Giants tied it up, and my son announced that he changed his mind and he wanted the Giants again. It was too late: his college fund had been transferred into his sister’s account and his stuffed animals bagged up and donated. I’ve read touching accounts of die hard fans of various team rooting for their rival team to support their kids, like the dad who was the Red Sox fan cheering on the Yankees when his daughter grew up loving the Bronx Bombers. I’m not that mature. I could learn to live with a Cowboys fan, a USC fan or an Oakland A’s fan, but I would never be okay living with someone who loves the Dodgers. As it was, it was a long inning before my son returned to the embrace of the orange and black, but I’m happy to report that we pulled together as a family to get through that difficult period and hopefully we’re stronger because of it.