NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Every baseball season comes with its own tale of failures and successes. Nobody knows that better than a Mets fan who lives by the mantra “You gotta believe.”
A grandmother nicknamed the “Queen of Queens” is the focus of this week’s Snapshot New York with CBS2’s Steve Overmyer.
A visit to Citi Field brings you up close and personal with a rare breed.
Mets fans are the most intense, baseball savvy, tormented souls. Even the beauty of the blossoms in front of the stadium can’t distract from the nightly mission.
Gloria is a devoted Mets fan. She has enjoyed the glory and endured the tears. Being a fan of this franchise builds character. Lessons in life are literally written on the walls.
“As we have the Jackie Robinson mottos around us, persistence, among other things,” Gloria said. “You have to hang in there and go through bad times and, hopefully, on the other side you get the good times and you enjoy those as much as you can for as long as you can. Yeah, you gotta hang tough.”
Who better to give life advice than the fans who have seen it all — from the Bill Buckner play to Bobby Valentine in disguise, the Subway Series, Mike Piazza’s 9/11 home run, Johan Santana’s no hitter and the Carlos Beltran strikeout. Being a Mets fan takes courage. Maybe it’s fitting Gloria’s last name is Feit (pronounced “fight”).
“I’m Gloria Feit, Long Beach, New York. Let’s go Mets and play ball!” she says on a video played on the scoreboard.
On the night CBS2’s Overmyer visited her, the Mets were honoring her as the season ticket holder of the game. She has attended nearly every home game over the past three decades.
“I’ve been here for 32 years,” Gloria said.
“I’ve got you by a couple. I’ve been here for 39!” Mets PR man Jay Horowitz said.
At Citi Field, she’s instantly recognizable. Players want hugs and everyone knows her.
It’s easy to see why she is the “Queen of Queens.”
Gloria’s husband is a Yankees fan, so she usually comes by herself. Her normal pregame routine of reading a book was replaced on the day Overmyer saw her by digging in the dirt. She got to take a little of the Citi Field infield home with her.
“My husband will be thrilled,” she said with a laugh.
Later, Gloria spoke to Mets slugger Jay Bruce.
“Jay, I’m a big fan. It broke my heart when they released you last year and so I was so thrilled when you came back,” she said.
“Thank you, Gloria. Here I am,” Bruce responded.
Mets fans and the team have a familial relationship, something Gloria agrees with.
“They’ve been there for you and you have to be there for them. It works both ways,” she said.
Overmyer: “There’s something special about coming to the ballpark every night. Do you ever get tired of it?”
Gloria: “No. It’s only six months, so the other six months I recover.”
On average, the Mets draw about 30,000 fans per game. It’s not the most in the majors, but maybe they’re the most loyal.
“Yes, even when it doesn’t make sense. You have to be. If you’re a Mets fan you’re a die-hard. Otherwise, you’re not really a fan,” she said.
It’s not hard spotting the real fans. Even when the Mets are trailing by three runs the fans are persistent in their belief.
And even in a moment of heartbreak in the middle of a Mets loss, Gloria found yet another life lesson.
“You have to work hard for everything you get. Nothing is coming to you,” she said.
Overmyer: “You really do have an optimistic outlook on everything.”
Gloria: “Yeah, well, you have to. You harden yourself to the bad times and you know that somewhere on the other end of it is going to be good times. You know it’s possible, so you hang with them and hpe that it’s going to be possible this year, and if not you come back next year and do the same thing.”
Gloria grew up a fan of the Brooklyn Dodgers, but after they left for Los Angels she was heartbroken. So no matter how frustrating it gets with the Mets, she’s grateful to have a team to call her own.