Friday, July 1, 2005

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How to reverse New England's demographic decline

Stan Grossfeld reports in the Boston Globe about the deeper social impact of the Boston Red Sox winning a world championship last year:

When Jason Varitek leaped into Keith Foulke's arms Oct. 27, 2004, they weren't the only ones embracing on that glorious night across Red Sox Nation.

Back in Boston, Dr. Robyn Riseberg and her husband, Doug, had a couple of beers, decided the stars were aligned, and celebrated the World Series championship in their own way. ''I will not refute that," said Riseberg, blushing slightly.

Now, there's living proof.

Emma Smith Riseberg, 5 pounds 5 ounces, was born June 18 at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, six weeks early and with a head of hair that would make Johnny Damon envious. She is the first known baby conceived after the Red Sox won the world championship. Baby Emma already has a full Red Sox wardrobe and tickets in Section 16 from her season ticket-holding grandparents. Dr. Riseberg, a lifelong Sox fan, was on bed rest for eight weeks. ''We have Red Sox in our blood," she said. ''She gave me a run for my money, just like the Sox."

There are already signs of a ''Red Sox phenomenon," according to Isis Maternity, the largest provider of childbirth education and parent services in New England. The due dates start roughly in mid-July, nine months after the Evil Empire was destroyed in four straight games, and continue through August.

''Last week we sold more memberships than we had any other week," said Jo Myers McChesney, cofounder of Isis Maternity. ''There could definitely be a little bit of a Red Sox phenomenon going on. People being fired up after the playoffs and the World Series. We have strong class enrollment for couples delivering in late July and August, and they may very well end up being higher than other months."

Red Sox newborn baby clothes are flying off the shelves faster than Dave Roberts dashing for second base.

''We have definitely sold record numbers of Red Sox paraphernalia," said McChesney. ''Onesies for babies, teeny tiny T-shirts for newborns with Red Sox logos. We have definitely seen and expect to see an increase in kids named Manny."

Click here for the Globe's accompanying photo essay.

posted by Dan on 07.01.05 at 09:29 AM


Paging King Herod

posted by: Josh on 07.01.05 at 09:29 AM [permalink]

I am sick of the "Red Sox Nation". Who cares about a bunch of northeasterners and their stupid baseball team? It's not like it is something important to life - like the Cubs. I wonder if UofC should give tenure to Red Sox fans. Actually, I do hope Dan gets tenure so he can be in town this fall for the Cubs/White Sox World Series. Is it really a subway series if the train is actually elevated most of the way between Addison and 35th Street?

I think this story about an increase in births nine months after the Red Sox World Series win will turn out to be apocryphal just like all of the other stories about an increase in births nine months after some event (big snowstorm, blackout, etc). Lazy reporters use some anecdotal evidence to write the easy story. When the actual numbers are examined, it turns out to be false.

posted by: Martin on 07.01.05 at 09:29 AM [permalink]

That's nice, but the real way would be to suspend space and time and make early Fall (or "Autumn" as they say back east) last all year.

posted by: The Lonewacko Blog on 07.01.05 at 09:29 AM [permalink]

So does this mean that nurseries in the Bronx are correspondingly full of empty beds? Hmmm...

posted by: Tamoshanter on 07.01.05 at 09:29 AM [permalink]

Global Warming might help more.

posted by: Richard Heddleson on 07.01.05 at 09:29 AM [permalink]

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