Sometime during the time my beloved San Francisco Giants were getting swept by my current hometown Kansas City Royals in Kansas City, I had plenty of time to think. Obviously, no self respecting sports fan enjoys getting swept. Hell, no self respecting sports fan enjoys losing. It sucks. It sucks when you are surrounded by thousands of happy fans, cheering for every base hit, every double play, and every run. Given, I have been a Kansas City resident for 19 years. I grew up watching Royals baseball at Kauffman Stadium, but my father was a smart man. From day one he raised a Giants fan. I didn’t know it when I was younger because it was incredibly difficult to keep up with a west coast team that plays daily, but as I grew older, the fervor grew as well.
I remember in 2003, getting to see Barry Bonds live in Kauffman Stadium. It was one of my first times getting to see the Giants in person. The Giants ended up losing 6-1, with Barry Bonds striking out looking to closer Mike Macdougal. A such begins my curse with seeing my teams lose in person. Off the top of my head, I will list all of the teams (Bay Area) that I have seen live, and lose.
- 2003 Giants at Royals
- 2012 Canucks at Sharks (First Sharks game)
- 2013 World Baseball Classic (Japan falling to Puerto Rico)
- I saw the Giants at (then) Pac-Bell Park when I was really little. Don’t remember but we probably lost that game too.
- 2014 Giants at Royals- 3 game sweep.
In all fairness, I saw the 49ers beat Kansas City in 2013 preseason and saw the Golden State Warriors beat Phoenix in 2013 (First Warriors game). Lets just ignore that and pretend like I have never seen my team win live. Seeing my team, whether it is the Giants, Sharks, 49ers, or Warriors, is a gift in itself. I came to terms this weekend that I don’t need a win. The win is just the cherry on top of an already great weekend.
So back to the original point. You know, about being swept. I was on my way to drown my sorrows in Fiorella’s Jack Stack baked beans when I ran across my friend post this on twitter.
Happiness isn’t about getting what you want all the time. It’s about loving what you have and being grateful for it.
It was actually, almost, serendipitous that this was posted on my way to eat barbecue after the game. My happiness doesn’t stem from seeing the Giants win. My happiness stems from having the opportunity to see the team that has given me so many good memories (winning 2 World Series in 4 years, and so much frustration (any time things go horribly awry). In the Royals 45 year history, the Giants have visited three times. First being 2003, where I saw them once. Second being 2008, where I missed the whole series due to work. And lastly, being this past weekend, where I witnessed the sweep in all of its tragic glory. That happiness isn’t in the result. The happiness isn’t in the autographs that I wanted. The happiness is being 10 feet away from Tim Lincecum warming up in the bullpen (even though he isn’t the same Cy Young winner he once was). The happiness is being 20 feet away from Brandon Crawford throwing the ball around with Pablo Sandoval during batting practice. The happiness knowing that Hunter Pence saw my "Hunter Pence sign" and beat writer Hank Schulman taking a picture of me with my sign. The happiness is simply seeing this beautiful, storied team in the place you call home, during their lowest point of the season, being surrounded by friends who root against the Giants and family who root for the Giants, being 20 feet from those you have idolized for years, and knowing that deep down, after all is said and done, even when they trample on your hopes and dreams, nothing is better than calling yourself a Giant.
Authors note (Just a cool way to say I’m writing something else)
I’m calling it now. When i fly to Santa Clara with my father to see the Sharks play the Kings at Levi’s Stadium for the 2015 NHL Stadium Series, the Sharks won’t win. But there is no place I’d rather be.