Friday, June 30, 2006

Because "Fan" isn't Masculine or Feminine

So, I guess maybe I should applaud Alex at Bronx Banter for saying that women baseball fans bring something different to the game and should be respected as such, because I guess some women CAN see things differently than men do but...why does there have to be a difference between the sexes when it comes to fandom at all? This isn't really his fault, as it sounds as if Alex hasn't been exposed to many women fans, but man, most of all my Yankee fan friends? ARE WOMEN. My season-ticket crew is one guy...and six girls. And they know their shit too, not in a "Oooh, honey, tell me about the baseball men!" or "Oooh, I'm only watching because there are hot guys on the field." kind of way. And our guy friends? Treat us like equals as a result. I've never thought to thank them for this, but after reading that entry, I'm going to have to give it up to the men who HAVE realized you don't have to have testosterone coursing through your veins to be as in love with a team as they are, and who don't act all "Oh KB, you and your sweet sentimentality and womanly nurturing spirit are the best part of your fandom." BLECH. I want to be seen as a baseball fan. Not as a woman who happens to like baseball and thinks differently than my male counterparts. When the shit comes down, it's all about loving your team, and having boobs or a penis doesn't make you any better or worse or "different" of a fanatic.

Maybe I'm in a minority, but I honestly don't see too much of a difference between myself and my male baseball fan friends (aside from the whole being attracted to some of the players thing -- which, hey, I don't see straight male football fans ogling the cheerleaders and having their fandom questioned as a result, so shut up). Like, we agree that booing A-Rod is asinine. We agree that Scott Proctor is being used too much. We agree that Pink Yankee Hats and The Wave are a sign of the devil. Check out my blog roll if you don't believe me. The stuff that Lupe, June, Shannon, Kat, Erica and myself are praising or bitching and moaning about are the same things Mr. Faded Glory, Paul Katcher and Darth Marc are going off about. How does that make us different? If anything, EVERYBODY brings something a bit different to the table in terms of their writing style or their opinions, but when you shake it out, there's probably a whole lot more at work than being an XX or an XY.

And I will say this: One of the saddest things about being a "woman fan" is that when you tell guys you're a Yankee fan, some will envelop you right away and treat you no differently than they would a guy wearing a Mattingly T-shirt. But others act as if they are humoring you and toss you softballs about Derek Jeter or how many championships the Yanks have won. Then you start spewing everything you know and you see this "Oh shit" look cross their face because...they don't know as much as you do. Then they will try to change the subject. I cannot tell you how many times this has happened, ESPECIALLY while at Yankee Stadium, so I don't get why there would still be this notion that men are more inherently into the game than women are. A man can be as big of poser of a fan as the woman who claims she is a fan of the team but is really only a fan of a certain cute shortstop. Yet you see a guy sitting in the Tier wearing a Yankee hat and you won't think to grill him about the retired numbers or who plays what position because you assume he will know. When in my experience, he might just think that there's only one No. 8 in Monument Park and that Gary Sheffield is still in the lineup.

Sigh.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

PS

You know how people have referred to A-Rod as "phony" and whatnot? Well, I'm seeing that after he hit the home run yesterday, he didn't come out for a curtain call to acknowledge the crowd that had mercilessly booed him throughout the game, who then turned on a dime and cheered him as if he was their bestest friend in the entire world after the homer. You know what a "phony" would've done? Come out and be all "Hey! I love you too!" raising his helmet with a cheesy smile a la Reggie Jackson, telling the crowd that "No, it's all you guys, seriously. I love you too. Mwah! Big kisses!" But instead it was the crowd who was fucking phonier than a three-dollar bill yesterday, and A-Rod, bless his heart, refused to give into that. That isn't starting a war with fans, as some may want to believe -- that's starting a war with the people who THINK they are fans, but deep down know they aren't. It's starting a war with the people who don't deserve a seat in the Stadium.

And for that, Alex Rodriguez has permanently sealed his place in my heart.

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Because You Knew I'd Break My Baseball Celibacy Vow For This

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You see this? I want you to take all your "Non-Clutch, Papi is SO much better, Overpaid Millionaire, He's So Not Jeter, He Deserves to Be Jeered" ideas, "Close-N-Late" stats, and bile-filled boos, wad them up and put them in it. And take your current-while-reading-this-post thought of "One game does not a season make, fangirl" and shove that in there as well. Now take a match, light it up, take a deeeeeeeep puff, deeeeeep enough to fill your lungs, and exhale. Ahh, doesn't that feel good?

Now shut the fuck up.

And with that, I return to my regularly scheduled interleague exile.

My 1992 Self Would Be Squeeing Over This in My Inbox, But...

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Man, from All-Star outfielder to professional spammer. Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

The Battle of the Bus Seat

Today I won the battle of the bus seat. Yes, I got on the bus, sat down next to a guido yuppie who thought his penis was big enough to warrant spreading his legs out so that his left leg was taking up a quarter of my seat. So I did the bitchy, passive-aggressive thing by pushing my right leg as far as it would go. He didn't seem to get it, and I'm guessing a dude who would take up two seats probably would think I was hitting on him. I debated saying something, but then his phone rang in his pocket -- I know because when it vibrated, I felt it and thought it was my own phone -- and he had to reach over and move his legs to get it and I went in for the kill and staked my claim over the rest of my seat. So Johnny Big Pee Pee had to sit with his knees only six inches apart instead of twelve. Aww. But people, seriously. If you pay for one seat, take one seat. Or you will have me to deal with.

Ah, if only it were the 1950s, someone would write a folk ballad about it.

Monday, June 26, 2006

Get the Point!

So I'm really quite surprised that with the death of Aaron Spelling that TV Land hasn't jumped on a Spelling-a-thon or something. Does the network not know the social signficance of Fantasy Island, Charlie's Angels, and, of course, The Love Boat? I am truly bummed they are not showing the latter because, seriously, it's been way too long since I've gotten to Guess the Plots. And if they're not airing the most bizarrely awesome show on the man's resume, how will people learn to do things like The Isaac? What's that, you say? You've never heard of The Isaac? Come on, you know what it is. I give you, the opening credits anchor lifting up, revealing Ted Lange as Your Bartender, and he's so psyched to be serving you, he doesn't give you a just one-finger point. Oh no, you're so awesome, he gives you a two-finger point.

And this is something you can use everywhere in your life, like when you see someone you think is awesome, of if someone does something awesome and you witness it. Like, it spread around my father's workplace as a signal of awesomeness, and my co-workers are sick enough totally to fully appreciate its value as well. So why don't you take this opportunity to embrace The Isaac? Here, let's have Ted Lange break it down to make it easy for you:

point1
Notice the awesome person looking in your direction/witness an awesome, point-worthy moment, get fingers in position....

2point
...Pow! You've been Isaaced!...

point3
...now smile because if feels good!

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In an effort to get The Isaac party started, The Chicken shows you how cool you could look. He is such a natural at these things.

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Guy the Godzilla is always in point-position.

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However, Gustave would rather act like a Yeoman Purser...whatever that is. To each his own, I suppose.

Moving for National Holiday Status...

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No, El Capitan, happy birthday to you.

Now, everyone go out and dive head-first into something in honor of this occasion.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Just What My Neighborhood Was Missing: A String Section

So of all the Saturday night noises I have heard from this apartment building -- loud, thumping bass, slam dancing, fire alarms, boyfriend/girlfriend screaming matches, roommate screaming matches, creaking beds, hoardes of drunks clomping up the stairs, buzzers being pushed by some other drunken assholes, doors slamming -- well, I wasn't quite prepared for what I heard last night. Because when it's midnight and I'm trying to watch a movie, and I hear some strange noise coming through the wall I'm fully expecting it to be some angry rap song or the "making' sweet love music" Chewboken sometimes puts on (and ew, I know). But when I mute the TV I hear...a violin? Yeah, seriously. It was too quiet to be coming from Chewboken's room, but loud enough that it carried through my wall when I put my ear up next to it. So it was either somewhere in his apartment or possibly in one of the buildings next door. I think I might have to scratch it up to the latter because 1) it's condos on both sides of my building, and my guess is that people who buy condos are on the mature side and wouldn't have a problem spending a Saturday night playing an instrument and playing it well and 2) The violin wasn't eeking out gangsta rap or techno or Madonna, which seem to be the staples of loud music in this building.

Whoever it was, well, I thank them for the nice change of pace. As long as they don't get like my old Greek landlord (who would play the fiddle at 7 a.m. on the weekends, right above my bedroom of course), I won't mind admiring their talent through the wall.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

In Which I Play Favorites

Last week, Yankeebob brought up the interesting phenomenon of having a favorite person, i.e., somebody who makes your day. He says it doesn't have to be someone you're married to or dating or related to or anything deep like that -- just someone you're really glad to know. And after not having to think very hard about this at all, I've decided I totally have a favorite person...but I can't reveal it here because I don't want y'all getting all sad that I'm playing favorites with the peeps in my life. Not that people should feel bad about this -- I'm sure everyone has a favorite person, and it doesn't mean you LIKE them more than everyone else, just that you...favor them more? I don't know. But there won't be any hurt feelings on my watch, so I'll keep you guessing...which you're more than welcome to do in the comments section.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Gee, You Must Need a Press Credential to Have Figured THAT One Out

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Dudes, I've been saying this for years. How is the idea of a pitcher using 'roids suddenly this big reveal? Get in the now, ESPN. Like, if a pitcher has no neck, temper issues and has been throwing professionally since the Regan era, your radar just might be going off a little bit, as mine has since, oh, 1997.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Dear Clothing Makers...

...if I wanted to look like a gypsy, I'd hop in my time machine and set it back to an era where frumpy skirts and dresses were, like, the hippest thing in the caravan. I can't remember when clothes stayed so fugly for so long, but I'm beginning to think it's never going to end, and Boho-chic is here to stay and make me vomit every time I walk into a clothing store.

What I wouldn't give for something with clean lines or something that doesn't make you look like you slept in it the night before or something that doesn't look like what I made in my 8th grade sewing class.

Blech.

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Say Hello to My Little Friend

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This is the biggest crab I've seen in a long, long time -- he measured 7 inches, horn-to-horn, and I don't even know what his wingspan was. He looked a lot like Jason Giambi size-wise, with A-Rod legs -- and if you've ever seen A-Rod on Letterman, you know what I mean.

Right before we caught it, I'd knocked one off a dropline with the net, being that I hadn't been crabbing in a year and I was rusty and stuff. So when my dad starts to pull this one up and calls for the net, and then when it gets closer to the surface and we see how big it is my dad's all "OK, don't knock this one off." The pressure was on, but I was very Derek Jeter like and scooped it up no problem. Then it proceded to fight back and got loose on the boat and scared the crap out of me because I was barefoot and I like having toes and stuff. But my dad reined him in, and he is now freshly roasted and going to make an excellent crabcake.

Live from crabbing: My new scary pet.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

In Which I Just Might Be Bitter

Now, I don't watch the World Cup because, well, I don't watch a lot of sports outside baseball. I know it's supposed to be exciting and world joining and whatnot, but I reserve my every-four-year joy for the Olympics. That doesn't mean I don't get how deeply felt soccer is around the world, though. In fact, I have a lot of respect for a sport that is so widely beloved. BUT. I find it very interesting when people complain about Americans (who have not one, but FOUR major sports distracting them throughout year, with tennis, golf and auto racing thrown in there as well), not embracing soccer while the rest of the world does, as if America is the only country that refuses to give a sport a chance. Because it's not like these other countries around the world are so accepting of other sports themselves. I give you: Baseball. Yes, a sport that is widely played and beloved in the U.S., Canada, Central America, South America, the Carribean and Japan has been dropped from Olympic competition. Why? Because the rest of the freaking world couldn't care less. Maybe it's not a sport that's as huge as soccer, but you've still got a good portion of the world that gives a damn about it.

But it's Americans who are lousy, good for nothing sports fans. Sheesh.

I'm Going to Sledgehammer THEM in About a Minute

So now the lovely neighbors' masonry crew is SLEDGEHAMMERING something, a something that almost sounds like my building, such is the loudness and the vibration. Oh, and now they're drilling stuff too!

And what time is it? 8 fucking 30 a.m.

If I ever get to go to sleep when I want to and wake up whenever I feel like it while living in this building...wait, so never going to happen.

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Alone on my Anti-Interleague Island

Goody goody gumdrops, it's interleague play time! It's that special part of the season when families will sit down in front of the television, eating their dinners on folding trays (because it's way too important to miss by sitting at the dinner table), ready to take in the wholesome goodness of rivalries that don't even exist. But it's fun, because it's so rare to play the Mighty Washington Nationals, the Fantastic Florida Marlins, et. al! Who cares if this means we don't see our old foes the Mariners, Indians and Angels as much anymore because of it? Hooray for the gimmick that was supposed to make us all forget the strike of 1994!

Sigh. I'm going to be catching up on my Netflix queue the next few weeks, so unless something earth-shattering happens in Yankeeland, I'll see you folks for Yankee-related posts in July.

Quote of the Year

"Get a man a Chipotle burrito and feed him for a night. Teach a man how to order from Chipotle.com and you'll feed him for a lifetime." -- A very fed-up, yet philosophical Jason.

Return of the Yankee Diaries!

Dear Diary,
Well, tonight was certainly interes....owieeeee! Jeezy, it hurts just to even move my back slightly, thanks to getting hit back there tonight. Let me tell you, I was PISSED. I mean, how many times can we get hit and take it like men? But color me surprised when Randy's pitch kept tailing in and in and he got ejected from the game because the ump thought it was intentional. I'm not sure but... I think Randy just defended my honor. And I'm, like, woah. He likes me, he really likes me! Maybe he'll ask me to hang out at the Yankee Stirrup Sock Hop next month. I'd totally be down with that, but only if he promises not to pants me.

I have to think of something to wear!

Hasta la Pasta,
Jorge

Dear Diary,
If I get suspended for pitching inside and not even hitting anybody Jorge's going to have some hell to pay for acting like a little girl, let me tell you. He keeps looking over here like he's in awe or touched or something. Doesn't he know I just wanted to get out of the game early to see the latter half of AFI's 100 Years...100 Cheers program? I couldn't wait till they talked about my favorite movie, Pollyanna, but it didn't even make the list. What's that about? Do people not appreciate the whole "when you look for the bad in mankind expecting to find it, you surely will" moral? Le sigh.

And what is UP with Yankee fans? They boo me like crazy on Friday night and today they practically want to make me their king. Are they schizo or merely on something?

Gruntingly yours,
Randy

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Query

To my Yankee fan friends:

If I was trying to get my mitts on 7 Tier tickets to the Saturday, July 29th game, (which Ticketmaster is saying I can't) or for the Saturday Aug. 12 game, how can I go about this? StubHub isn't really helping (they have tix for the Aug. 12 game at an OK price, but our preferred date is the 29th, which doesn't have the quantity we need or the price we want). A site called Ticket Liquidator has enough tickets for the 29th at a little more than I'd want to pay, but I'd deal. Has anyone ever used them before/are they reputable? Or is there any other way?

Gracias.

Monday, June 12, 2006

Jackhammer: The Revenge



Don't you wish you could live here too?

Pop Quiz!!!

So I've been thinking lately that you can separate the "Educated Fans" from the "Idiot Fans" pretty easily. All you have to do is sharpen your No. 2 pencils and take the following quiz...

A True Yankee is:
A. The most bullshit term you've ever heard in your life.
B. A player who has won a championship in New York. Oh wait, Mattingly and Winfield never won here? Hmm...
C. Paul O'Neill. Remember that time he hit two home runs in a game for that sick kid in the hospital? OK, it was a home run and a triple with an error, but beat that, A-Rod.

You glean your baseball opinions from:
A. Um, hi, myself.
B. Other Yankee fans, particularly that guy who has the 1998 championship banner in his cubicle and Frankie at the Bar, who blew a gasket when the Yankees got rid of Jeff Weaver.
C. Sports Guy, Mike and the Mad Dog, and the various columnists around New York City, particularly that knowledgable chap, Mike Lupica.

Robinson Cano hits a leadoff triple with the Yanks down by one in the bottom of the 9th. Two outs later, A-Rod strikes out swinging. You are:
A. As equally irked with Damon and Jeter for making outs themselves.
B. Think to yourself, "Papi would've gotten a hit."
C. Boo.

You go to a game:
A. Because I just want to be there.
B. Because of who the opponent is.
C. Based on where my seats are located.

Pat Kelly:
A. Had that game-winning hit against the Angels to cap off an 8-0 comeback in 1993!
B. Was friends with Mark McGwire in St. Louis, right?
C. Who?

The Yankee retired numbers:
A. Are as ingrained in my brain as my telephone number.
B. I only know Ruth, Gehrig, DiMaggio and Mantle.
C. Um, I can't even name the numbers of the guys who are alive and on the field right now.

The most iconic visible fan at games is:
A. Freddy the Fan
B. Rudy Giuliani
C. Entourage's Adrian Grenier!

Ladies, when deciding what to wear to a game you:
A. Go with what's comfortable and weather appropriate.
B. Decide on my cute Jeter shirt, or whichever player is most popular at the time.
C. Like, my 4-inch strappy sandals, a teeny denim skirt and shirt that shows off my awesome boobs. I mean, Derek Jeter could see me in the stands and fall in love with me! Who cares if it's 49 degrees outside!

You're sitting behind the Yankee dugout. You:
A. Gawk in awe and can't believe your unbelievable luck.
B. Get pissy when players won't sign autographs for you.
C. Bust out your cell phone and call everyone you know, waving to the camera for the first 5-6 innings so your Mom, your husband, your pet turtle and Frankie at the Bar can see you. What? Mike Mussina is pitching a perfect game? I had no idea!

The Yanks are losing 9-4 in the 6th. You:
A. Stay put. You've seen crazier things happen.
B. Decide to get a jumpstart on traffic and bail.
C. Start the wave.

Scoring:
Mostly As: Keep doing what you're doing. I won't have to hit you should our paths cross at the Stadium.

Mostly Bs:
You may want to consider stepping away from the bandwagon people and start thinking for yourself and enjoying this team for what it is, rather than ragging on them for what they're not.

Mostly Cs:
Go away.

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Though I Doubt These Were Real Fans...

If you were a big enough idiot to boo Alex Rodriguez today at the Stadium (after he DID get on base and DID score a run), I hope to god the next time you fuck up at your job that people turn around and start booing the crap out of you. Especially if you've had a great track record and were employee of the month last month.

Dickheads.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

GRRRRRRRR.

You know something is off when the Yanks' last two not-so-great efforts are the least of the things pissing me off the past two days. So let's visit with the people pissing me off right now:

-- My neighbors. No, not Chewboken...seriously. This time it's the people in the condo building nextdoor to ours. These geniuses have decided that it's quite alright to have a masonry crew JACKHAMMERING up their patio slab since 11 a.m. today. And they are only halfway done as of 4:45 today. Like, have they not heard of, oh, DURING THE WORK WEEK? When many people aren't home? Oh, I know, let's do it when the people in the five or six buildings surrounding your yard, all within 20 feet of it no less, are all home and trying to have a day of restful enjoyment. It's a beautiful, cool, breezy day too. One in which you don't have to use the airconditioning because you can open your windows wide. Oh, wait, no, YOU CAN'T, with the constant pounding and all. If it continues tomorrow, I'm throwing Chewboken's rolling chair at them.

-- The jackass walking up to the Tier before last night's game who was all "What's with these shit tickets" to his friend, who then went on to be all "see that camera pit over there? I sat next to there last game. Not like these shit seats." He continued to whine about it THE ENTIRE RIDE UP THE ESCALTOR. First of all...I'm a proud season ticket holder of those "Shit Seats" and second of all, do you know how many people would trade places with you in a heartbeat for those "Shit Seats"? You know, the ones who would just be appreciative to be at a Yankee game? Stay home next time, asshole.

-- The obnoxious woman behind us last night. Holy LUNGS, Batman. And the fact that she was screaming about shit she had no clue about ("A-Rod you ain't done nothing since you been here" was my personal fave) was making my skin crawl even more. She had a loud comment for EVERYTHING that went down, and by the fifth inning, all I could think was "Please, let there be a rain delay, so this fucking bandwagoner will go home." Seriously. I WANTED it to rain. And when it does and there's the hour-long delay, she and her group leave, never to return, and the losing doesn't bother me so much after that.

Ah, that felt good to vent that all out. And what do you know, as of 5, the jackhammering has stopped. Just in time for Chewboken to come home and start stomping around and screaming about his hair or something. Yay.

Friday, June 09, 2006

Fuck you, rain.

Thursday, June 08, 2006

You Think He's Kidding?

The Chicken has a message for the seemingly unending cloudyness and rain that has besieged the NYC metro area of late:

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Seriously.

Cupcakes, Cakes, None Left Out in the Rain

So we're feeling a little celebratory in the copy department today, as Jason is having a birthday and has reached "the age of the rock-star death." And while rock stars generally die in pretty edgy fashion, I'm sure diabetic coma would be considered way awesomer by comparison, thus why Rana and I baked for our friend's big day. Oh, all right, we don't want to kill him, but we do want him to have a fabulous, sugar intense day. So Rana made some cupcakes with fantastic chocolate frosting and I managed to make a cake that looked somewhat like a record, and so far they're big hits with our co-workers (Art even called the cake "One of my favorite top five albums"...rimshot!) and Jason got to have a bit of a photo shoot as a result.

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We do do the whole celebration thing pretty well in this department, if I do say so myself. But it's not that hard when you have such a convivial bunch, especially when the birthday dude in question leaves an e-mail for all of us today that reads "A.M. Rush PDF" and turns out to be...well...

draw

Nice.

Read, and Be Informed

Now, I know they annoy me with their anti-Torre bile (though I do love them for everything else), but please, for the love of all that is holy, take some time to read Nomaas' wonderful shut up Sports Guy column today. The fact that it fully supports my theories on A-Rod too (and said in much better terms than I could ever string together) is just gravy.

(Thanks to Lupe for the permalink!)

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

He Ain't Heavy, He's The Chicken's Possible Adopted Brother

Chicken: OH MY GOD PLEASE TELL ME WE CAN ADOPT MELKY CABRERA.
KB: Well...
Chicken: I WANT TO BE RELATED TO HIM!
KB: Uh, Chicken, I know he's utterly fabulous and all, but he's 21. He's a legal adult.
Chicken: And what, preytell, does that have anything to do with it? He's still younger than you.
KB: And so is Erica, but you don't see me adopting her now, do you? She's only a little bit older than Melky...
Chicken: YESSSSS! SHE CAN MARRY HIM! HE CAN LIVE HERE WITH US!
KB: Dumbfounded
Chicken: And then you must marry Derek Jeter. Think of what a great double wedding that will be!
KB: I'm going to bed now, Yente.
Chicken: Oh come on...hey, maybe you can sign up for that Big Brothers/Big Sisters thing and get Melky!

Blonde, Yankee Fan Moment of the Day

So it's performance review time in the copy department, and Art had us attach our forms to an e-mail and send them to him. Mine gave him trouble opening yesterday, so today he asked me to send him a new copy, which I had saved on my desktop. About an hour later...

Art: Um, Karen, I don't think I can use your review...
KB:What? Why?
Art:...because I don't think [Human Resources] would accept this turns computer screen for all of us to see, revealing...

Picture 1

Yes, my friends, I attached a document with photos of the Yankees (which I used to make Tonya's going-away card, hence why they all look so bummed out) instead of my performance review. This gave the copy department a very hearty laugh for the day (I'm still guffawing over it at random moments). Art decided the photos could be interpreted for my review, but that would mean I'm not happy here. And after incidents like this, how can I not be?

Hee

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I don't know why I love this...OK, I do -- Varitek all sprawled out on his back like a tipped-over turtle or cockroach or something, and Melky looking like he's being chased by the devil -- but it's awesome.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Bischfest

I'm sick and cranky and just wanted to get a few things off my chest:

-- I hate the term "Baby Bombers". Just...Ick. Call them kids, rookies, new guys, the fewtcha, whatever, but the whole "Baby Bombers" things brings to mind caricatures of Melky, Andy, et. al in diapers with pacifiers shoved in their mouths as they hang out in a playpen. But then I thought the Muppet Babies were annoying as all hell, so this could be reminiscent of that.

-- I can't deal with the people who bitch and moan about the "old guys" playing over "the kids." Because while it's nice to see what the fewtcha's going to bring, people don't seem to remember that "the old guys" are making a ton more money, and that this game is a business and the business owner (that being George, craziest owner in all of baseball), would probably want to see his well-paid players actually, you know, earning that money. It sucks if the kids are producing, but so far, I haven't seen this team having trouble scoring runs, even without the kids in the lineup. Besides, the Yankee organization has made great strides in not giving away the farm when it comes to possible trades -- that these kids are sticking around means they WILL get playing time, when said old guys' contracts are up. Small steps, people, small steps.

-- It's the middle-aged guys, not the kids or the old dudes, doing most of the producing ANYWAY.

-- I ABHOR Pitch-by-Pitch. Hi, I just lived the at-bat TWO SECONDS AGO. Chewboken didn't sneak into my aparment, whack me in the back of the head with a vase and give me amnesia, thus making me forget what the batter just did. So stop thinking I need to be stimulated at all times and just show me what's going on on the field at present.

-- Sux fans are the only fans in baseball allowed to do the Yankees Suck chant. They invented it, and therefore it should be patented to Boston. When I hear fans in other parks doing it, it makes me feel like they are equating themselves with the suffering that Sux fans had to go through for that long stretch, or that their team's rivalry with the Yankees is as caustic and as long-standing as it is with Boston. And just..no

-- I want to eat something that actually has taste. BLEH.

Yankee Fever

Warning: LONG POST AHEAD.

So, when Darth Marc suggested a nice Yankee fan group trip down to Baltimore a few weeks ago, and the new roomie seemed intrigued by the idea of seeing Camden Yards (I'd already been a few years back), I figured "What the hey? A little roadtrip in June will be lovely." And it was lovely but...oy, fucking driving in downpours and stomach virus. That's the stuff you don't count on when you decide to make nice little road trips.

Let me backtrack to Friday at work, when my stomach decides to start terrorizing me, and I pass it off as what I ate for lunch that day. Then I get home and it terrorizes me some more and I know it's more than bad lunch choice. And then I find out that A-Rod's been benched with a stomach virus and I'm all "OMG, parallel lives!" and send a mental fist-bop down to Baltimore. But A-Rod probably doesn't still have the medication prescribed to him from the last time his stomach terrorized him (though while this sucked, I wasn't NEARLY as bad as I was last December) and I pop one of the anti-stomach terror pills and am OK for the rest of the night. And don't yell at me about expired drugs and whatnot because my stomach was being evil and this stuff put that bitch in its place, so nyah.

Saturday morning dawns crappy and damp, and I feel a little worn out, but chalk it up to not eating much. Erica and I hop in our rental car and after a wrong turn down a one-way street (shut up), we get on the road to Maryland. And that road is covered in Chick-Fil-A's, don't you know. We make a special stop in Mt. Laurel, NJ to get some breakfast, and I try their chicken breakfast biscuit and holy GOD it was good. I didn't eat the whole thing and didn't eat the hashbrowns, though, in an effort to keep my stomach at being nice. But can someone PLEASE put one of these in NYC or Hoboken or even Jersey City so I can get this stuff more often? PLEASE?

The road to Maryland is also very rainy in parts, and at one point, we drive through the worst downpour I've ever driven in. Thankfully, it lasts all of two minutes, but it's making me concerned about whether or not it will rain during the game, which, as you all know, we have a lot of experience with. But by the time we pass through Delaware (woo!), the rain has stopped and it's just cloudy when we get to Baltimore. After a rather annoying search for parking (which Erica deserves a gold medal for her co-piloting skills/eyes for spotting a lot that wasn't only for "hotel guests and permits"), we find a spot and walk around the Inner Harbor for a bit and....holy Yankee fans, Batman! I swear to God, I knew Yankee fans would be there, but I didn't think they'd take over the whole damn city. It was so freaking awesome. I'd been afraid to wear my Yankee hat at first because 1) I don't want people thinking I'm wearing it to be an antagonist and 2) I didn't want to get harrassed or anything, but dude...Yankee fans EVERYWHERE. I felt so...at home. The hat stayed on all day.

Erica and I walk around the Inner Harbor with all of our Yankee fan brethren, taking in the crowds and the waterfront and stuff (it was my third time there, but my first time when it wasn't a class trip), and that's when I start to feel a little...tired. I again chalk it up to not eating well, and when we walk over to the stadium, I get a pretzle that seems to help a bit. We meet up with Paul Katcher and his crew and by the time Darth Marc shows up, I've got an inkling that there's more at work in my system than just a passing stomach bug, but I'm determined to stick it out. After all, the weather is turning out to be nice and this is my first time seeing the Yankees outside of Yankee Stadium, and, oh, we just drove four hours to get here.

When we get our tickets, Erica and I leave the rest of the crew at the bar across the street head inside the stadium, as I just want to sit down and get some fluid in my system, and when we're seated in left field, I actually feel A LOT better. It was overcast, but warm with a nice breeze blowing, so it was refreshing just to sit there and watch the Yankees take batting practice with our section...who are almost entirely Yankee fans. And little children from some Baltimore area elementary school, who are divided evenly between O's fans and Yankee fans. They have a little gang war when the game starts, each group of fans screaming "YANKEES!" followed by "ORIOLES!" And this was charming for awhile, but then you realize kids have boundless energy and don't tire of repetitive things when beating out their classmates is involved, so after a few innings I was ready to get all crotchety old lady on them and smack them with the Yankee Journal (also making its first trip to see the Yankees outside of the Bronx).

That crotchetyness was what let me know I wasn't entirely well -- I mean, it normally takes a good dose of A-Rod bashing and stupid fans trying to sound smart that sets me off. And when I start getting chills and ask Erica if it's warm out and she's like "Um, yeah," and the stadium announcer says it's 78 degrees outside and I've got goosebumps, well...hello fever! For the rest of the game, I alternate between feeling overly warm and freezing, but I'm coherent and not sleepy or anything, so I know whatever I've got temperature-wise is pretty low-grade. It's good enough to make me mellow through Ranjo's mini meltdown early on, so while some of the Yankee fans in our area are all ready to kill him, I'm like "Eh, it's early." I chalk this up to having been sick at that goddamn Game 6 two years ago, where it was freezing-ass cold and rainy and Curt Schilling walked on water and made the blind to see or whatever -- now THAT's a bad game to be sick at.

And the game is way fun, what with the "Lets' Go Yankees" chants going around the stadium being as loud as they are in the Bronx (I'd say the crowd may have been about 50/50...seriously), and all the cool fans in our area (the little kid behind us cursing when the Yanks would screw up was AWESOME), half the Columbus Clippers in the starting lineup (whom I now refer to as All My Children), and the two-row singalong to Movin' Out when the O's make a pitching change...all of it awesome.

However, when Proctor gets all meltdowny himself, I do start to get agitated when it's all tied in the 9th and it looks like they may blow the game entirely right there. Erica's like "You know, we don't have to stay for the whole thing," and I'm like "I'll take you up on that if the Yanks don't score in the top of the 10th." The Yanks get out of trouble, and I'm envisioning this to be a 21-inning game at that point. I call down the row to Darth Marc that I'm feeling less-than-stellar and that we'll be heading out soon if the Yanks don't score and the words are barely out of my mouth when Damone goes yard and I'm like "THANK YOU DAMONE!" who I will now think of as the most considerate Yankee EVAH.

Picture 1
Johnny Damon: A man totally in tune with a woman's wants and needs.

After that, Erica and I decide to leave the game on a good note, and props to Rick for texting me the final score -- we'd heard they were bringing Wang in as we were exiting the ballpark, and when it took awhile for Rick's text to come, I was all "Fuck me, they blew it" but thank god, they pulled it out and we're able to hit a Chick-Fil-A on the way home in celebration (Yes, two stops in one day. You got a problem with that? Alas, I only managed a very plain grilled chicken sandwich, living vicariously through Erica who was having the yummy chicken strips) and have a very uneventful trip back home, except for that whole finding parking in Hoboken thing which...gawd, I am NEVER owning a car in this town.

I still feel kinda crappy today, but the fever is gone for now. If the Yankees sweep, perhaps that will make it all better.

OK, now about Camden Yards itself. Since this was my second time to the Baltimore stadium, I was finally able to realize what it was that I didn't like so much on my first visit, and that is: Camden Yards is a beautiful ballpark...with all the soul of a Bennigan's. Now, hear me out. It's a LOVELY, scarily clean ballpark, and the people who work there (that I came into contact with) were all super nice and I'm glad it's not an ashtray stadium and that it's trying to get an oldish vibe going on there. But...Bennigan's, I swear. Maybe it's the green color scheme inside or the overuse of Top-40 pop music before the game and in between innings (at one point they played Baba O'Reilly and I was damn near stunned, since the likes of Coldplay and Michelle Branch were ruling the day over the PA System), the poor use of an organist (I think he played less than a handful of times during the game), eschewing Take Me Out to the Ballgame COMPLETELY (I know Thank God I'm a Country Boy is their tradition and all, but no TMOTTB at all? Are you kidding me?)...I don't know, it's totally not me.

I guess I should be happy that they do keep things baseball oriented there and that there's no rock-climbing wall/ball pit/hot tub in center field or fireworks after every home run or something. So a nice place to watch a ballgame? Yes. A place that gives you chills (of the non-fever variety)? No. I'm beginning to think that Yankee Stadium, Fenway and probably Wrigley when I see it are the only places that will every do that to me, as I'm a sap for the historical -- which isn't the ballpark's fault, I know, but I think real retro will trump faux retro any day for me. Also, I've decided I like the "stadium" feel to ballparks, as opposed to the "Intimate"' feel of the smaller places they're building now. I like the feeling that baseball's being played on a grand stage, not the community theater hall. Which is what I'm fearing the New Yankee Stadium will be, so, shut up New Yankee Stadium.

All in all a great trip, which I'd totally do again sans flu-like symptoms, since this kind of took me out of things a bit. And next time, nothing stands between me and the Chick-Fil-A nuggets. NOTHING.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Live from Yankee Stadium south!

Thursday, June 01, 2006

The Butler Did It!

Yes, Farnsworth, or as Steph and her dad have started calling him, Fahhhnsworth -- because his name sounds more like an early 20th century butler than a man who should be saving baseball games...and he plays that way too sometimes -- has finally fucked up enough to the point where I don't trust him. Strikeouts and finding ways out of messes he created be damned, the man is just plain scary out there. I don't appreciate being put through the mill every time he's put in the game -- an inning with Fahhhnsworth is the emotional equivalent of living an entire game, and mixing in having to hear your neighbors do the nasty. In other words, it's draining and uncomfortable when he comes in. Not sure what you can do about this, but when you've got a guy who I trust about as much as I did Felix Heredia and making juuuuust a bit more money...well, I guess that's George's problem.


And Wang? What WAS that? Yeesh.