Along with our free tickets, a friend and I had also been given a parking pass to the Ipswich Garage. When we got to the garage before the game, an east African immigrant came over and took our keys to park it - and explained that the lot was valet parking.
When we returned around 11pm, others were in line waiting to get their cars back. But one pair of young white men, probably in their late 20s, were extremely agitated. After a moment, I discovered that the problem was that the valets were unable to find their car keys.
All of the people working in the garage were immigrants of various nationalities, a fact that was not lost on one of the young men, whose buddy was worried that he would be late to work if their keys weren't found shortly. "If you don't find those keys, I'm going to call the fucking INS on you!" he yelled, among other profane threats.
To his credit, the man running the operation did ask him not to yell at them, but that only occasioned more yelling, including "fucking Mexican piece of shit!"
I am embarrassed to admit that I was too fearful of how these two young white men would respond, and as such did not intervene.
The whole incident reminded me of the 2004 flap over Barry Bonds' comments that he would not consider ending his career in Boston. Dave Zirin wrote about this then:
In an interview with the Boston Globe, Bonds was asked a cream puff question about whether he would consider finishing his career in Beantown. Bonds shook his head and said, "Boston is too racist for me. I couldn't play there. That's been going on ever since my dad (Bobby) was playing baseball. I can't play like that. That's not for me, brother." When the reporter countered that the racial climate has changed in Boston, Bonds responded, "It ain't changing. It ain't changing nowhere.
Sure, Bonds' insistence that "it ain't changing" was overly grim. But I would certainly say that "it ain't changing fast enough".