It was July of 1984, and the first Red Sox team of my lifetime without Carl Yastrzemski in its lineup was struggling along at under .500 and nearly 20 games behind the Tigers. By the All-Star break it was clear that the Sox had no shot in the AL East, but my mind wasn't really on baseball anyway.
Driving home one day just before school let out in June, my buddy Marc and I passed two girls we recognized as among the best-looking sophomores in school. We asked them if they wanted a ride home, and this being The Cruising Vessel they naturally jumped right in. A few days later we took them out for a Saturday night drive, and the car worked its magic. This was the first time I had ever dated a girl from my own school, and I envisioned several months of summer bliss followed by a triumphant senior year of walking down halls hand-in-hand with the lovely Miss X.