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Sporting events will have a different feel in Boston

POSTED April 19, 2013
BY Patrick Tiscia
Twitter: @PatrickTiscia

It will never go away.

The Boston Marathon will go on next year just as baseball did in New York following the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center. But it will be different. The innocent feeling of attending a sporting event for those in Boston will never quite be the same.

I, fortunately and unfortunately, know the feeling.

In 2001, I was lucky enough to attend all three Game 5s of the Yankees' playoff rounds. The ALDS game was the clincher against Oakland after they fell behind 2-0 in the best-of-five series. The ALCS fifth contest was also a clincher, a 12-3 beatdown of a Mariners team which set a record with 116 regular season wins.

The World Series game was a legendary clash as you may remember, with Scott Brosius hitting a two-out, tying home run in the bottom of the 9th, leading to an extra inning Yankee win and a 3-2 series lead.

As each game and series progressed that year, so did the atmosphere at Yankee Stadium. It was truly a wonderful combination of humanity and sports, with people hugging after every home run to epic parades of celebration around the old stadium after each win.

The games were a place people could go to get away from everything - to an extent.

Between every smile, there were feelings of uneasiness in the stands, because, while hundreds, if not thousands, of security guards guarded the place, you never quite knew if you were safe. As time and seasons slowly went by, so did those concerns.

But, for me at least, I am a little more aware of my surroundings now than I was then. When I attend weeknight Yankee home games, I still flinch for a split-second when the News Radio 88 traffic-copter flies loudly over the stadium. Same thing at Citi Field when the planes from LaGuardia fly by.

You can move on from an incident, but it will never leave you.

In Boston, I'm sure a lot fans at events will feel the same way. Little things, like the sound of a custodian rolling the portable trash can in the concourse, will make you stop and look now, compared to not even noticing it before. I can't even imagine the feeling of security at next year's marathon. Securing a closed stadium or arena structure is one thing, securing 26 miles of open land is another.

Despite this, you can bet the house a record crowd will be on hand next year. Speaking from experience, it will be one sporting event those on hand will not forget. I have been to hundreds of games in every sport since, but nothing has compared to the baseball playoffs of 2001.

I one-hundred percent expect the people of Boston to feel the same way about next year's marathon. They deserve it.

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