If you don't know who this is, you will by the end of the month.
Ahhh February... This is it. The end of Baseball Winter. Non-fans often wonder how there can be so many months of baseball, but after a winter of licking your wounds and reloading for the future, by February, like an unbroken boxer coming out of our corner in the 10th round of a fight where we've already been knocked down four times, Padres fans are raring to go.
So it's the first of the month and the first month of our Baseball Fan Happiness Project. Our theme and goals for this month focus on grounding ourselves in the Padres rich history. With nothing really happening game-wise it's the perfect opportunity for us to get a firm understanding for what it means to be a Padres fan and a baseball fan in general.
Will getting some historical perspective make you happier? Considering the Padres history, maybe not. However, when the Padres win the World Series, you will be glad to have cultivated your knowledge and appreciation of the team. Also, it might help for Trivia Night.
You don't have to do everything that I suggest, though I'd encourage you to come up with alternative resolutions for the month. I also think that focusing on the theme will probably help by osmosis.
So onto the first month... Immersion into the past!
Why focus on the past?
Think about a time when you've voluntarily taken an art history or music appreciation class or film class. You've graduated beyond just "liking something pretty" into wanting to have a deeper understanding of what it is you're consuming.
Part of being a sports fan is immersing yourself in the culture of your adopted team. With the Padres basically always being under the shadow of free agency and a small market, we don't have many stars and there have only been a few highlights, so it shouldn't be hard to learn who those stars were and know the Padres Lore that every Padres fan should know about.
Every February before the season starts, I go through my own little ritual of grounding myself before the games start and I imagine that many of you do the same thing so this may be easy for most of us. If you don't go through a pre-pre-season ritual, you may find that this gets you in the proper mood for enjoying a season of baseball
So here are the projects we're going to undertake. If you have anything you want to add, recommend it in the comments or a FanPost. By the end of the month, our goal will be to have a better understanding of Padres history and a better understanding of baseball history in general. Only by knowing our past can we optimistically look towards the future!
- Read (or re-read) a book about Padres history
- Review some important Padres moments of the past
- Visit Friar Fest and touch a bunch of old junk
- Learn more about baseball history in general
- Pick a favorite "Old timey time" Padres player
Recommending reading this month:
- Bob Chandler's Tales from the San Diego Padres
- Baseball in San Diego: From the Padres to Petco (Images of Baseball)
- Baseball in San Diego: From the Plaza to the Padres (Images of Baseball: California)