As Josh Beckett walked the red carpet of last night’s Second Annual Beckett Bowl, we noticed he was wearing a gigantic belt buckle that, at first glance, looked to be the Red Sox B, paired with jeans and a button-down shirt. But when we spied the same logo on a bracelet his girlfriend was wearing, we saw it was a little different.
“It’s his brand,” Whitney Hayes said over the wails of frenzied fans begging for autographs.
As city-dwelling northerners, we immediately thought she meant it in the sneakers and politics sense of the word. But she meant it in the traditional cattle-singeing sense of branding. (It also appears on the gates of Beckett’s Herradura Ranch.)
After that bit of culture shock, we needed something familiar and comforting. So we were happy when Glen “Big Baby” Davis arrived on the red carpet.
Unlike during the Celtics victory parade, Baby kept his shirt on, despite pleas from one rabid fan. The Celtics rookie mugged while posing with sick children, then patiently tried to answer questions as his fan begged him to show some “Cajun love” and sign an autograph.
We asked Davis if the optimum playing nail for bowling was different from basketball. But clearly, his mind was more on the competition than his nail-care line.
“It’s a little different,” he said. “It’s more of a concentration, mental approach to bowling. We’ll see what I’ve got.”
ESPN’s Steve Levy arrived shortly after Baby went inside, and told us that he wasn’t confident about his bowling game. He was right—when we checked in on him later, he wasn’t exactly setting the lanes on fire. Maybe being only a few lanes away from ex-girlfriend Hazel Mae was distracting him.
The scene inside was chaotic. Bowlers tried to navigate the press of cameras, and the sound of falling pins was overpowered by guests trying to collect as many autographs from the sports stars as possible. But the celebs/jocks were patient with the fans, especially Javier Lopez, who was great with his young teammates.
While the red carpet felt slightly disorganized, with celebrities appearing without proper introduction, the kids had a blast bowling with their heroes. And isn’t that what Beckett Bowl is all about?
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