In october 2011, I had a reason to go to London and play tourist—my younger sister had started her junior year abroad at the London School of Economics, and I had some available vacation days coming from my job working for the Boston Red Sox. Although the job itself was rather low on the totem pole—I was a sales associate in the ticket office—it was nevertheless a dream come true and, as far as I was concerned, it was a stepping-stone toward a lengthy career in professional sports, my lifelong ambition.

My father tells of the time when he was talking to an old friend whom he hadn’t seen in a while and, when the friend asked how his three kids were doing, my father replied, “Well, my oldest daughter is in Harvard Medical School, my youngest daughter attends the London School of Economics, and my son works for the Boston Red Sox.”

Your son works for the Boston Red Sox!” the friend exclaimed. He didn’t care, nor did he probably even hear about what my sisters were doing. It was my association with the Red Sox that he found so incredible.

Anyway, my sister was engaged in her schoolwork, so one evening I sauntered over to The London Eye, the massive Ferris wheel that provides a birds eye view of the city. But as I neared the Eye, I saw that it had been commandeered for some special event and that no tourists were being allowed to board.

The event?

Ticketed patrons (I found out later that tickets were about L15,000) were getting into the capsules for the trip around ...

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