The Beauty of Bay Ridge
By: Liam Sullivan
Chapter 1: Coney Island Dreaming
My name is Joseph Galligan. It was the good old days. I was a reporter for the Bishop DiCostanzo football team. Coach Gaetano knew of my involvement with the newspaper. I had never really played sports since middle school.
Game Three. We drove to Coney Island for our game against Father Johnson High School. I remember when I was a child going to Coney Island. Both my mother and my father used to take me there; now I just go by myself, if I ever find a reason.
Oh yeah. So, about my father. He moved out of the house and went to New Jersey. My mom did not want him anymore so left. He was an alcoholic. That was the biggest problem with him.
Anyway, back to football. It was the mid-2010s. Football was booming. Odell Beckham was on the Giants and that was all the rage. I was a huge Giants fan. HUGE. I had posters in my room, and not a shade of Cowboys blue. Only the Giants colors.
I got off the bus carrying my iPhone and laptop. I was going to take photos of the players during pregame as I always did. After I thought I got enough shots, I would go and shake hands with all the players.
“Let’s get it.” “Have a great day today.” Those were some of the phrases I would like to support the players with. It was special for me. I was only a sophomore, but the varsity coach said that he wanted me to take photos. The varsity coach. I had loved DiCostanzo football since I was ten.
We were in the locker room before the coachs’ speech. I was very excited to cover this game. I normally did JV, but unfortunately, the varsity reporter was not there, so I had to step up.
The coaches gave a very impassioned speech. “We are all men of DiCostanzo. We are strong Catholics. Whenever we tackle our opponents or beat them on a run, we show that we are stronger in faith and tradition,” said Coach Gaetano, as he wanted the team to improve to 2-1.
We went out. The ball got kicked off, and the game was away. Francis DiRuocco let the ball go out of the endzone and we started the game on the 20. Martin Valdez was our starting quarterback. The first play from scrimmage was a sweep six yards to the left of the line. Marcus Dobbs got brought down at the 26 to open our offensive side of things.
The first quarter went as planned. We had a 21-7 lead at the end.
Second-quarter was not that bad. We increased our lead to 28-7.
I got a little distracted after. There she was standing there. She was attractive. She was wearing an Odell Beckham jersey. I was supposed to go into the locker room. However, I decided I wanted to talk to her.
She was on her phone. She had brunette hair, blue eyes, and a tan from the summer.
“Hey,” I said to her.
“Hey there,” she said back. “You are a Giants fan?”.
“Yeah, I am. My father works as the Giants beat reporter for the Brooklyn Neighborhood Chronicle. So he gets two complimentary tickets to each game. It’s a different seat every week, but since I have been to all their home games, they may give me a sideline pass.”
“Really? That’s so cool.”
“Yeah, maybe you should come with me sometime.”
“It depends, you know. Church and all, but I will figure it out. Hey, you got snap, a number, facebook, or anything?” She proceeded to give me her Snapchat, which I thought meant everything as a fifteen-year old kid. She went on to tell me she lived in Bay Ridge. The reason she was at the game, was because her friend’s cousin played football for Johnson.
Adrianna O’Callahan. She told me her mother was Italian, and her father was Irish.
I took photos of the second half, but I could not stop thinking about her. The game ended. We won 42-14. Coach Gaetano said I was a first-class skilled photographer, and he could use my photo skills as an assistant cameraman.
I had never met anyone in my life like her yet before. Such a lovely girl. A Giants fan too. You do not get that combination every day of your life.
I went on the bus back home. Crossing over the Verrazano Narrows Bridge, I was very passionate about the day. A win. A new friend. And now to celebrate, watch some college ball over some good food.