Monday, March 07, 2005


Why, why, why did I read Jim Caple's column pimping his latest book? Maybe I thought I'd get a laugh at some smart humor poking fun at fans like myself. But all he does is make the same generalizations about Yankee fans that send me into apoplectic fits of rage via his usual columns.

First off, I just want to say I find it amusing that he titled the book after one of the WORST books I've ever read. There's something ironic about that, especially since one of my main beefs with The Devil Wears Prada was the lack of fact-checking, and one of my biggest gripes with Caple was when he blathered on about Yankees in the World Series, only to have his facts wrong while trying to make his argument. OK, just thought I'd get that off my let's get to some of his delicious little bon mots about us Yankee fans:

Yankees fans not only think their team is the greatest in the history of sports, they consider themselves to be the most knowledgeable, the most loyal and the most supportive fans in the history of the game. They refuse to acknowledge that fans in other cities love baseball and the local team as much as they do.

This just burns my ass and I don't even know how to respond to this because I'm freaking agog. You mean all those diehard fans I called friends in college, the ones who rooted for the Orioles and Phillies and Sux were just a figment of my imagination? Then again, I'm just an arrogant Yankee fan, so what do I know?

Even so, they threw so much garbage on the field during Game 6 of the 2004 championship series that major league security stationed riot police at the edge of the field, giving new meaning to the term "guarding the lines."

And as someone who was at that game, I can tell you AGAIN that this was the biggest over-reaction I had ever seen -- on the police being brought out part. The throwing of the garbage, while stupid, was more of an "OH PUH-LEEZE" response than a "HERE WE GO, LET'S BURN THE PLACE DOWN!" response. I'm a 125 pound woman with no upper arm strength and was weak from sickness and I had no terror notions whatsoever, let alone an inkling of fear that would require police armed in riot gear to take the field. Tonya and I just rolled our eyes at the whole thing. But what would we know? We're just arrogant Yankees fans.

The one saving grace is that for all their arrogance -- the self-satisfied smirk is as much a Yankees tradition as the interlocking NY logo -- New York fans can never truly enjoy their victories.

Right. Because you're a New York guy and would know SO much about what it is to be a New York fan. And this is the most preposterous thing I've ever heard, but then again I'm just an arrogant Yankee fan.

The true pleasure in sports comes not from simply winning, but from watching a team overcome adversity to win in the end. The joy of sports is never the final destination, it's the journey. It's experiencing the highs and lows, and appreciating those highs all the more because of the awful lows.

Yeah, it's because I only enjoy the post season that I blog about this team ALL YEAR LONG. That's why I have friends who do the same. That's why the YES Network is so freaking popular, even in January.That's why the Stadium sells out almost every game during the regular season, even in April. But I'm just an arrogant Yankees fan, so what do I know?

It's too easy being a Yankees fan. Anyone can root for a team that wins all the time. The test of a real fan is whether you have the character to stick with your team through thick and thin.

WHOA, WHOA, WHOA. You have just seriously insulted me and my honor and if this were days of yore, I'd totally challenge you to a duel right now.

The Yanks won the first two years of my life, of which I have absolutely no recollection. And then there were years of such suckage, that people became desperate and became Mets fans. But those of us my age grew up adoring that suckage in Pinstripes. And when the Yanks won in 1996, 18 years after their last championship, man it was sweet. Yet even after all the greatness we've witnessed recently, I can still rattle off the rosters of those sucky teams and would gladly dig out my newspaper clippings and memorabilia from those teams in a heartbeat. Is that thick and thin enough for you, Jimmy or do you want blood? Because I'm beginning to think there's no convincing you.

Caple needs to understand the big reason these people are writing in and blowing their stacks at him --and I'll say it for the bazillionth time -- is that is so over the top in its Yankee hating, you have to wonder why we bother going there sometimes. Like for every gushing Sux story last October (and almost any other time of the year), there were three bashing the Yankees. That's why it almost knocked me over when I saw some anti-Sux sentiment written there in the last few months. But I don't expect him to understand this since he's just decided the blowhard label goes for all Yankee fans and that people going batshit on him is a result of some kind of sense of entitlement on our part and not because we just want equal time. He can use the terms "most Yankee fans" all he wants to protect himself, but when the shit comes down, he's still assuming the majority are the assholes, and I know this to not be true. In my personal coterie of Yankee fan friends, not one has displayed braggart, obnoxious tendencies, and in all the games I've attended, I can't say I see the obnoxiousness outweighing the normal fans either. We love this team with everything in us and damn I don't like seeing it get misrepresented. But focusing on the jackasses (who, I agree are out there, but only because they're probably more egotists than Yankee fans) gets you more response I guess.

But I'm just an arrogant Yankees fan, so what do I know?


Kat said...

I read the article too, it made my blood boil. I think it's just jealousy on his behalf. We're the best fans on the planet, and people just have to deal. Fact is, they can't deal, so they have to talk trash about us. Signed, Proud Yankee fan 1967-Present. :-)

Karen said...

I'd love for him to come to a game with me, just so he can see what being a diehard Yankee fan is all about. Then again, I wouldn't want him looking at the field and jinxing the team....

Yankeebob said...

This kind of crap is why I haven't visited for a long time. I've been a Yankee since I was a kid and I too remember the terrible teams we've had. There is never any guarantee that the boys will win. (Look at last year.) The difference for me is that the entire organization is focused on the Yankee traditions, which include being classy on and off the field. They are also focused on winning, but shouldn't every team be? Seems to me a lot of them are just going through the motions.

That crap about other fans is silly. He's obviously never been to a game in Camden Yards. The O's fans are amazing plus I never go without my Yankee colors and there is always some kind of ribbing but nothing bad has ever come of it.

One more thing, we don't just think our team is the greatest in the history of sports, we know it's true. And so does the total sports world. If nothing else works, look at stats. Stats don't tell the whole story of the Yankee traditions, don't let you in on the trials and tribulations of every team or the obstacles they've had to overcome, but for those who can't see these things, or refuse to admit they are real, the numbers speak for themselves.

I remember being in a panic during the summer of 1978 when we were (seemingly) a mile behind and lost Billy as our manager, but the end result was a Championship, after enduring a 1 game playoff just to get into the post-season. The highs and lows of that season are hard to match. The self-satisfied smirk is a Yankee tradition because it's been earned. I wear it proudly all year long.

Karen said...

Well said, YB. All this Yankeefied bile has come AFTER the Yanks have won anything, in years when they've had no World Series titles, which is confusing as hell. But the fact that they ignore the tough times, and awesome comebacks like the 78 season, is just plain stupidity/ignorance on their part.