Dear John Henry: Last Place Teams Should Have First Place Service

Sox tickets jon lester 2014

Dear John Henry:

This is my souvenir ticket stub from Tuesday night, Jon Lester’s second-to-last game in a Red Sox uniform.

I went to Fenway Park expecting no issues getting a seat to watch a last place team. I was so wrong. Unlike other evenings when I’ve purchased Standing Room tix, this game really was sold out. Wall to wall people — a wonderful sign of a faithful fan base.

The line at the Game Day ticket office on Lansdowne Street extended the full length of the Green Monster, meaning that I was guaranteed to miss an inning or two. I didn’t care. I was meeting a childhood friend who I don’t see often and the ballpark is my favorite place to hangout.

But Fenway’s charming atmosphere shattered the moment I handed over my credit card. After I signed the receipt and put the pen down, I heard the ticket agent behind the bulletproof banker’s window mumble something I couldn’t understand. I smiled at him, said “thank you” and started to walk away.

“I SAID, PUT THE PEN BACK UNDERNEATH THE WINDOW!!!” he yelled through the glass.

His angry facial expression and tone would be appropriate if I had been trying to steal something from the Red Sox gift shop. I told him to chill out and walked away, trying my best to forget this unfortunate “Welcome to Fenway.”

Oh, I still had a good time and have a thick skin, but even if I had tried to steal your employee’s 10-cent pen, do you think this is the first impression Red Sox fans should get when they go through the turnstile?

I suspect that this hothead (who was working in the far left window the evening of July 29) has yelled at other patrons before. I bet this kind of employee behavior would get you waterboarded at Disney.

A more apt comparison is Yankee Stadium, where I was recently shocked at how over-the-top nice all the workers are — even to those of us in Red Sox gear. All of the ushers there carry pinstriped signs that scream, “HOW MAY I HELP YOU?

Take a look:


WORLD CHAMPION CUSTOMER SERVICE – My friend George was embraced by Yankees staff in spite of his Nomar Garciaparra jersey.

Granted, the rest of the Sox employees I met that evening were nice. Yankee-quality nice. But do you really want ANY hotheads working for the Boston Red Sox?

Do you really need an Alfredo Aceves in the ticket office? I’m hoping you know who I am talking about (though I suspect he’d be overly kind to the ownership) and that you can hook him up with an anger management webinar.


Darren Garnick

Loyal Red Sox Fan Since 1976

P.S. I would be happy to send you more pens if it would help put your ticket agent in a more peaceful, Zen-like state.

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