I have been a Red Sox fan all my life -- and a devoted one at that. I remember crying tears of happiness on a magical October night back in 2004 and begging my Dad to take me to Boston for the parade (which he did). I also love the Patriots (Tom Brady), and the Celtics are okay, too. The only Boston team I don't support are the Bruins (go Caps!). You’re probably wondering what my point is…
My point is that when you live in another state and pick the University of Massachusetts, things instantly change for the better:
You get to root for Boston sports.
All my life, as I rooted for Boston sports teams, I had nobody to celebrate with. I also felt slightly guilty for not rooting for D.C. sports, but in my defense, D.C. sports make die-hard fandom really hard. When I got to UMass, I could finally embrace Boston sports as my own; I went to a UMass football game at Fenway Park AND celebrated the Patriots Super Bowl win during my freshman year alone!
You get to go to Boston whenever you want.
Besides getting to root for Boston sports, I also get to be near Boston itself! Taking weekend trips to the city with my friends is the perfect getaway. There are so many places to eat, shop, and take pictures. Plus, you never know what celebrities you might see walking down the street. My friend once got a pedicure next to Big Papi.
You get to use Massachusetts slang.
Another wicked fun thing about moving to UMass is getting acquainted with Massachusetts slang. The slang barrier when I first got to school was definitely real. For example, I’d ask “What's the move?” and my new friend would look at me like I was crazy. And then they’d ask, “Who’s throwing down?” Of course, we were both just wondering what we should do that night, but I was speaking DMV (D.C., Maryland, Virginia) and they were speaking Massachusetts. Sharing different go-to terms with in-staters was a great way to start conversations and make new friends.
You get to be a New Englander.
Finally, I get to call myself a New Englander. I get to channel my inner hot chocolate-loving, sports-watching, Patagonia-wearing self and thrive. I’ve always enjoyed these things, but being surrounded by people who feel the same, I finally feel like I’m home.