DELANO, Calif. - There are Dodger fans and then there's Delano resident Boomer Rivera. His office "mancave" at the school where he works, is a shrine to all things Dodgers.
Pennants dating back to the 40's and ticket stubs from the '88 World Series & '57 (the last year the team was in Brooklyn) adorn his walls. There's also pins from the days of Jackie Robinson and original seats he picked up from Dodger Stadium.
He has grass clippings from the field that he now has growing on his desk. But it's he picked up off that grass that takes his fandom to the next level.
"I remember telling my kids 'Look that's Manny Ramirez' gum!' They thought it was gross but I didn't," he recalled. "I saw it as an opportunity to have something no one else had."
On a 'Fireworks Friday', as fans were allowed onto the field, Rivera picked up the gum with a receipt and now keeps it in a cup at work.
Historians remember the team as being named after its fans; dodging trolley cars in Brooklyn on their way to Ebbet's Field. Rivera bought an original sign from one of the trolley cars that ran on Flatbush Avenue.
During the team's historic skid--with LA losing 16 of 17 games this September--Rivera went to Chavez Ravine to intervene. "I just reached over (the outfield wall) and sprinkled some holy water on the field," he laughingly said. "Now we're here (in the World Series)."
If the Dodgers 29 year title drought finally comes to an end, Rivera will be waiting in the front of the line for the parade to start (wherever that may be). Ready to take more pictures and add more memoribilia to his shrine.
"What's a collection if you can't show it off? I think of it as my little piece of heaven," he said.
Rivera has plans to attend Game 2 of the World Series Wednesday night.