Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Tha Battle of the Gardens

The “New” Garden (Gahdin: in Boston speak) has finally adopted a name that has a link to its past. It only took 14 years and a series of Banks that folded quicker than the San Jose Sharks come playoff time, but it has now adopted a name that even the most beer-soaked fan can finally remember; The New Garden.

Name wise, it’s not exactly a paragon of imagination or creativity, but at least it’s not something fruity like “the Greater Boston Sports and Exhibition Pavilion”.

But the question remains for those who can’t figure out why cars ever got rid of vent windows: how does the New Garden stack up against the “Old” Garden.

Truth is, it doesn’t stack “up”, seeing as the new one was built next to the old one as building it on top would have strained the tensile strength of rats, WW1 era pot metal, bricks of Aztec origin and various sports announcers coagulated cigar smoke. But I digress…

As far as comparisons go, I’ve decided on some informal statistics listings, and by informal statistics, I mean:

a) They aren’t listed or counted by any known means
b) I made them up.

So lets get on with the vital statistics and comparisons...

1) Average amount of time it takes to acquire a beer between periods:
New Garden- 7.4 minutes
Old Garden- 7.4 days

2) Average amount of distance traveled to said beer vendor:
New Garden- 64 steps
Old Garden- 7,356 steps

3) Chances of finding a Strawberry Daiquiri or frozen Mudslide cocktail:
New Garden- 100%
Old Garden- 0%

4) Chances of getting beaten up for asking for a Strawberry Daiquiri or frozen Mudslide cocktail:
New Garden- 0%
Old Garden- 100%

5) Chances you’ll get stuck in hearing range of a self-absorbed twit on a cell phone during the game:
New Garden- 105%
Old Garden- .0214 %

6) Chances you will walk away from a urinal with pee on the top of your shoe:
New Garden- 10%
Old Garden- 35%

7) Chances you will actually find a bathroom:
New Garden- 85%
Old Garden- 12%

8) Chances that something toxic will fall from the ceiling into your beer
New Garden- 2%
Old Garden- 60%

9) Chances that you will be wedged next a very large person who hasn’t bathed since Independence Day:
New Garden- 3%
Old Garden- 25%

10) Chances that you will be in a seat with a stunning view of a part of the building superstructure, directly in the line of sight:
New Garden- 0%
Old Garden- 15%

11) Chances you will be stuck behind some over-eager mouseketeer who keeps a giant foam finger raised in front of your face:
New Garden- 35%
Old Garden- 0%

12) Chances you will suffer temporary hearing loss during a Bruins come-from-behind go ahead goal:
New Garden- 1%
Old Garden- 40%

13) Chances you will be surrounded by a crowd that knows when to cheer without the aid of a “jumbotron” or other tacky and foolish means:
New Garden- 0%
Old Garden- 100%

14) Chances of having to suffer through the 12,372nd listening of “Welcome to the Jungle” blaring over a PA system:
New Garden- 100%
Old Garden- 0%

As you may have noticed, each venue has (or had) a somewhat different appeal. The “New” Garden is a relatively state of the art sporting facility, offering sports enjoyment to a newer and pickier crowd, one that expects entertainment, comfort and convenience.

The “Old” Garden offered few of these same items or amenities, it made you suffer a bit to enjoy your favorite team. You left the Garden either with a clear memory of a great game or with lower back pain, ringing ears and a possible bronchial infection.

The difference is like comparing a new performance car to a vintage muscle car. The new car is as fast or faster, offers more comfort, better mileage, and an up to date look, while the muscle car offered terrible ergonomics, noise, pollution, no handling or braking, but when you endure a 500 mile trip in either vehicle only one offers you a sense of significant accomplishment.

The Old Garden was that muscle-car, the new Garden, while very nice, just isn’t the same.

Of course a person would go insane trying to drive a muscle car day in, day out. The moral of the story is, essentially, you can’t go back…no matter how much you want to.

And unfortunately, that’s probably a good thing.

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