Confession: Until this year, the Nationals were something that just existed in DC, like motorcades or protests.
When they crossed my path, it would catch my attention, I’d enjoy the spectacle and then move on with my life. Baseball wasn’t really top entertainment for me.
Maybe it’s because I rode the bench in Little League and never really gave baseball a fair shake. It could be because my shoes were too tight or my #Natitude was two sizes too small.
Whatever the reason, the tude or childhood scars I wasn’t really into it. That all changed this season.
I know what you’re thinking. “How could he call himself a fan when he didn’t sit thru a game at RFK Stadium, and couldn’t tell Zimmerman from Zimmermann until this year?” What is the pledge period on that by the way? Is there a test new Nats fans should take, like a citizenship exam? How many seats does Nats Park have? [41,500ish] What President Mascot until this year never won a single race? [Teddy] Can you name a Catcher? [Kurt Suzuki] Who’s on first? [LaRoche] What pitcher was on the mound when we lost game 5?
Whatever the certification process, I’m game! And it seems that there are tens of thousands like me watching at home, lurking on twitter and listening to games on the radio.
Last December when Kelly Collis said we were going to Nats Park for a meeting about the upcoming season I began to feel the tingle. We walked around the completely empty snow-glazes stadium and had lunch up in the press box. It’s a breathtaking view! Talking about excitement for the team this year, how we could be a part of it, and what was in store for DC left me ferociously intrigued.
It was in March that I couldn’t put down a GQ article on this 19 year old Bryce Harper. “He plays baseball like he doesn’t care about anything other than making sure someone else loses,” they claimed. What’s not to like about that?
Kelly Collis, might be the biggest Nats Fan in all of Washington. She checks the boxes of going to games at RFK, her father is a Nats Fan, she’s bringing her son up as a Nats fan and well, she owns red sparkling Ugg Boots. Not to mention she’s slept in Drew Storen and Tyler Clippard‘s house. [Long Story Short:She dated the guy that they now rent from. They’ve hopefully changed the locks.]
Like any good evangelist, Collis rained #Natitude all over me. The season brought our show family so many highlights. From emceeing Lady’s Night at the Nats to supporting the Dream Foundation, popping up on the jumbo-tron to meeting new wonderful friends in line for Blue Smoke, to riding the metro before game five with a sea of red clothes to getting my first Nats practice fleece, being there when Teddy won his first race to being there when Ryan Zimmerman went down in the bottom of the 9th last night.
What an incredible emotional ride this season was. Sitting here, still wearing my Nationals hat because I couldn’t bring myself to not wear it today I can proudly say. I am a Washington Nationals Fan, full of #Natitude and counting down the days til next season! Let’s Go Nats.