By Tova Fruchtman: Tova’s Take
I’ve never been the most athletic person.
I took dance when I was younger, but I just wasn’t very good at other sports.
So, I wasn’t that interested in sports either.
Except the Braves.
I grew up in Atlanta during the “Brave Fever” era, before the Major League Baseball strike, in the early 1990s when the Atlanta Braves went to playoff after playoff.
Now, with Opening Day just hours away, I’m looking forward to watching another season of Braves baseball.
Lucky for me, TBS broadcasts most Braves games that aren’t broadcast by local networks.
But even now watching the Braves I can’t help but think of those early years.
When the Braves made it to the playoffs that first year, a tent selling Brave T-shirts, hats, sweatshirts, mugs, posters and flags popped up on almost every street corner in Atlanta.
I was in the fourth grade.
I remember I bought big Brave earrings made out of ping-pong balls.
I remember my grandparents took my brother and I out of school to go to a playoff game.
I even remember by heart the recording of Skip Carey my dad had play every time you started up his computer.
“Line drive left field. First run is in. Here comes Bream. He’s safe. Braves win! Braves win! Braves win!”
We did “The Tomahawk Chop” everyday in our P.E. class and when the Twins brought the Braves’ final demise, there was a parade in Atlanta celebrating their return.
Plenty of students were taken out of school to go downtown and welcome our losing team — who were still winners to us — home.
We even stopped class to watch the parade on television.
As the start of baseball season swiftly approaches, I am reminded of that same excitement — the excitement that even for a short time made people in Atlanta forget their differences and share joy in a moment.
Although I am not athletic, there are moments in sports that can inspire and upset and bring fans of all types together.