Tuesday, October 31, 2006

In Which It's Almost Just Another Day of the Year

So it's Halloween, and I'm sad to say that I've only seen two people dressed up thus far. One guy was dressed as Pee Wee Herman, and if the delighted reaction of the people on my bus was any indication, he may win a prize if his office is offering one. The other was a woman on Fifth Ave. dressed as a pilgrim, but there's a chance that may not have been a costume since I've seen Menonites around the city every now and then.

To me, it speaks volumes about a person if they don a costume to work, and it speaks volumes about a company that encourages it. These are people/companies that don't take themselves too seriously, and the world could do with more of that. And it's not that hard to do. For example, Dexter's company (a book publisher) is having its employees dress up like their favorite literary characters. I mean, how awesome would it be to get a bunch of girls together and go as The Baby-Sitter's Club? Something like that makes you think about your costume, too. Like, you can't just be a slutty witch or a farmer. It's kinda, gasp, creative.

Plus, there's something challenging about the sun being out when all this goes down. Any fool can dress up for a drunken night out, where everyone else is costumed and tipsy at a bar or a party. But it takes a certain kind of person to dress up in broad daylight, knowing 3/4 of the population of a city isn't dressing up, then having to wear their creation for 8 hours-plus of stone-cold sober work time. That, my friends, is a person with a sense of humor. So kudos to them for embracing it.

Because our big boss was in town today, I couldn't dress up like a slutty copy editor, but that doesn't mean I can't think slutty copy editor thoughts. Rarrrr. I mean, highlighters, proofreader's marks and the AP Stylebook = teh hotness...

Monday, October 30, 2006

Of Course, There'll Be Nothing to Blog About if He's Quiet...

Since I've just about had it with the lord of loud himself, Chewboken, I've finally composed a note to leave for him, requesting that he puts down a rug in his bedroom. The thing is, I'm not sure how he's going to respond (the Great Hair Incident of 2006 comes to mind -- if he's going to fly off the handle that much about something that grows back, I'm not sure how he'd take a neighborly suggestion), so I keep putting it off. But perhaps there is a better way to tell him. So I'm going to let you vote and decide how I can go about doing this:


How Should KB Tell Chewboken That He's Being Too Loud?
Have Erica tell Melissa who tells the landlord who tells Chewboken's roommate who tells Chewboken
Knock three times on the ceiling, or twice on the pipe
Have The Chicken do it
Raid a Hoboken "social club" and blackmail one of the older gents to do it
Spell it out in cookies
Say it in a song, a la Jim Croce
Have his hairstylist shave it into his hair
Have the Hoboken High marching band stomp on the floor above him and see how he likes it
Have a mime act it out for him...oh wait...
Keep blogging about it passive-aggressively in the hopes that he reads it someday
  
Free polls from Pollhost.com

Friday, October 27, 2006

Always Go With Your Gut

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I wonder why it is these "experts" would have so much faith in the Cards to make the World Series without even seeing them play this season, yet kick them to the curb when they do indeed make it to the playoffs.

I'm just guessing they all got high or drank the "Hot Thing At the Moment WINS" Kool-Aid when October rolled around.

I'm sending out bloggery Eeeeeeeeees! to the blogging Cardnials faithful -- I've never had reason to root for another team before, but knowing y'all would be delighted with the result made me actually clap a bit with the final out.

And, uh, has there always been this on-the-field trophy presentation in the World Series? I know it's been six years, but I feel like the Yankees always got their trophy in the locker room...

Thursday, October 26, 2006

You Never Forget Your First Time (Oh, Get Your Mind Out of the Gutter)

10 years ago today, right around this time, the Yankees beat the Atlanta Braves to win the World Series for the first time I could remember in my life.

I remember it was Parents' Day at Delaware, that it was a stunning day, that the Blue Hens beat James Madison in the football game that afternoon and that my parents took me to dinner at Friday's, where I had Yankee pot roast instead of the chicken fingers I so loved there.

I remember I had Lovin' Touchin' Squeezin' by Journey stuck in my head all day.

I remember I was wearing a white thermal shirt and gray sweatpants during the game, too preoccupied with what could happen to even think about looking fashionable.

I remember watching the later innings with the Yankee fans on my floor, Heather and Jason, and that as the game went deeper, that I wouldn't let myself think. Of anything.

I remember my jaw being clenched and my eyes bugging out most of the game, and that when John Wetteland decided to make things exciting in the 9th, that I had to literally clutch onto the cinderblock wall of my dorm room for support.

And I remember the final pop up: it's as if Charlie Hayes was squeezing the most fantastic, soberly drunken, orgasmic, unable-to-operate-heavy-machinery, snow day, Ode to Joy-meets-The 1812 Overture-meets-Tutti Fruitti, electric, first kiss, get the job, see a city skyline, James Brown, sugar rush, Christmas morning, your favorite song on the radio, absurd, sunrise, sunset, beating Super Mario Brothers, getting your driver's license, breathlessly magnificent moment of my life into his glove along with the final out.

I remember the scream that rose up inside me and that I had absolutely no control over it...because the Yankees were champions of baseball.

I remember frantically high fiving and hugging Heather and Jason, running up the stairs to celebrate with my friends on the third floor, (the musty smell of the stairwell at that moment being one of the loveliest scents I will ever recall) running back down and calling my parents at the party they were at and celebrating with more people in the dorm...all in less than three minutes.

I remember a friend telling me later that he was walking across campus and that all of a sudden, this collective roar went up and that he was confused for a moment before it dawned on him: The Yankees must've won the World Series.

I remember I didn't go to bed till about 4 a.m. -- not because I went out and got drunk to celebrate. Nay, I was merely soaking it in that whole time. Elated doesn't quite describe the feeling. It was something beyond that.

The Yanks would go on to win three more titles in the next four years, and I hold all those moments close to my heart. But there's just something about that first time that superpasses all the rest; Something about the purity or the insane unabashed joy or the "did this really just happen"ness of it.

It is the loveliest feeling in the world, and you keep it in your heart. Always.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Why Didn't We Think of This Sooner?

OMG! I think I've figured out how we can get A-Rod to reach his full potential and embrace his inner clutchiness and be the non-baby eating superhero he's supposed to be!

We must make him wrestle his fear.

rod Picture 1

If that's not the recipe for complete and total success, I don't know what is.

The Other A-Hyphen Person

Aww, my darling little A-Fed is making his way in the world. And singing in Spanish!

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Just Wondering

When did the word "Dentist" become synonymous with "Crook"? Because lately, I feel like anyone I know who goes to get their teeth looked at comes out needing a shit load of work done for an even bigger shit load of money. See: A friend being told it would cost $15,000 to have some cavaties filled, my mom being told she needed $5,000 worth of periodontal work done (when she eventually got it done by another dentist for less than a quarter of that), people being told they need their wisdom teeth out when said wisdom teeth are fine, another friend looking into lumineers, and instead getting her smile insulted by the dentist so she'd go for a more expensive option, and a lot of people I know who go in for a routine cleaning...and come out needing several kinds of procedures done.

I know the mouth is a complex thing. But you can't tell me that it's THAT problematic of a place at all times. And that expensive of a place to boot.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Re: The Other "Pine Tar Game"

Picture 1

If 1) there isn't a full-scale MLB inquiry into what was or wasn't (BWAH!) on Kenny Rogers' hand and 2)He isn't suspended for at least the rest of the Series, I want to hear one loud mother f'ing public outcry for Bud Selig's head.

Although my guess is that if Bud pussyfoots around this (like every other big issue in the game) and the fans start getting pissed off about having trust issues with national pastime and threaten to stop coming out to the ballpark, we'll be subjected to something like Bud's Best. Bandaid. EVER: "The game's tied after the 12th inning? Well, guess what, kids? It's time for the home-run derby tie-breaker! OMG! You LIVE for this!"

Anything to keep that legacy of all the "good" he's done for the game intact...

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Since When Does the World Series Need an Opening Act?

There is so much wrong with this Game 2 pregame, my head is about to explode.

*ETA -- And maybe the worst rendition of the National Anthem I've ever heard. Good show, Anita, good show.

Thank God I Didn't Pay to See It

Did you ever see a movie that made you never want to see another movie again? In a bad way?

That'd be Shopgirl for me.

Maybe it's because I'm a firm believer in not dating a complete stranger just for the sake of dating them and hoping to find "a connection" and therefore can't "get" this movie, but god damn that was two dreary hours of my life I'm never going to get back.

Shades of Gray: What You Can't See With Your Stupidity Glasses On

I really don't get why it is that when the playoffs start, any shred of common sense sports writers/fans/oddsmakers have flies out the window. I don't get how anyone could be "shocked" by the Cardinals "stunning" the Tigers last night. Unless you see everything in black in white, you'd know that this Series (and every other one for that matter) is pretty much anyone's game. Don't feed me that crap about the Tigers having momentum or the Cardinals only having 83 wins in the regular season -- that all goes out the window when you start a new, best-of-seven series. ANYTHING is possible. Yet it always feels like that when an "overwhelming" favorite is picked, people tend to forget that it's two MLB clubs playing here and that one has not suddenly devolved into the team from St. Joe's Home for the Blind. And then everyone acts all "This is SO crazy!" when the "underdog" comes in to take a game or possibly take it all.

Yeah. You've totally been watching baseball for a long time if you fall into this trap. Uh-huh.

I know the Tigers have been dominant in the post season thus far, but seriously. You'd think the Cardinals were playing the '27 Yankees the way people are talking. And last time I checked the '27 Yankees didn't back into the playoffs after sucking the latter half of the season. In fact, the Tigers have a little more in common with the Cardinals because of that. Yet a few playoff performances have suddenly made them "untouchable" or "destined" or something. That's just a load of hooey.

Because the last time I checked, the term "wildcard" isn't included in the definition of "destiny." I'm just sayin'.

Friday, October 20, 2006

It's Officially the Offseason in New York

First off, my sympathies to the good Mets fans out there (and Willie) who are probably hurting right now -- I know there's not much one can say to help it feel better, but know I've got your back.

But to the sucky ones who are mean to people they've never even met (wishing death on grandmas and such)? I hope this hurts like a mother f'ing bitch and that you're crying in a corner somewhere. And peeing yourself.

Anyway. Random thoughts:

Things I hope I never have to see again while watching a Fox game:

The Constant. Closeups. Of Angsty. Fans. Interspersed. With. Extreme Closeups. Of Pitcher. Then Catcher. Then Manager. Then Guy in On-Deck Circle. Then Angsty Fan Praying. Then Batter. Then Fan Talking on Cellphone Next to Fan Pulling Hat Down Over His Head. Then Pitcher. And So On. It's been their annoying-ass formula come the eighth inning for a few years now. Like, give me the pitcher and the batter and I'll be OK with it. Seriously.

-- Rally towels? In New York? Say it ain't so! I suppose it could be worse -- it could be ThunderStix.

-- I love how sadly they light the "Losing Manager Interview". I always half expect that they're going to roll out a dimly-lit piano player, hand the manager a cigarette and a glass of whiskey, and hope he breaks out into "One For My Baby."

-- I'm pulling for the Cards to win the Series for three reasons 1)A great blogger I know will be extremely happy if they do. 2)It's about damn time they pull it out in the post-season. And, the most important of all, 3) Their uniforms rock my world (my second fave after the Yankee Pinstripes/Road Grays). I mean, come on! Little serious-looking, possibly pissed-off birds! Hanging out on a bat! I don't know when I've ever seen that happen in real-life, but on a uni? It fucking rules.

So go Red Birds! As long as you don't start the Yankees Suck chant (rumored to have been going around the Tigers/A's game last week, which, spare me), you'll be A-OK in my book.

But The Yankee Chicken remains loyal to one team and one team alone. Just so we're clear here.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Quote of the Day

"It's like watching 2 Third World Countries play in the Olympics!"

-- Ken's incredulous response to the idea of a Detroit/Mets World Series.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

BWAH!

OMG! Chewboken just came clippity-cloppiting into his room AND HE WAS SINGING.

How...almost human of him.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Three Years Ago Today (Or Early Tomorrow, Depending on Your Time Zone)

Boonegoesboom

Ah, not only one of the best moments to be a Yankee fan, but also one of the best moments in my life. Seriously.

And also, one of my best blog posts ever. Not sure you can ever recapture that....

Sunday, October 15, 2006

The Cow Goes "Moo", The Sheep Go "Baa" and The Scapegoat Goes "Get a Better Argument, Bitches."

Since most of you have your minds made up either way about Mr. Rodriguez's place in or out of New York, I doubt this will do much in the grand scheme of things. But I would like to at least TRY to dispell any of these following misconceptions, as I fear people have been brainwashed or merely are just too tired of thinking about A-Rod to look further into the offenses of which they speak. So, I give you, my Alex Rodriguez Magnum Opus of Defenditude. These are several arguments I've heard writers and fans try to give as reasons that Alex should be traded. I think they're all bullshit. Here's why.

The "A-Rod is a Distraction" Argument: When I was in school, and someone was considered a "distraction" it was usually the hyperactive kid the teacher couldn't handle and was somehow taking away learning time from the rest of the class. But if A-Rod is this paste-eating, wound-up child and the Yankees are the innocent second graders with their perfect macaroni artwork, how exactly did he hurt them?

Cano, before and after injury, was Hits Fucking McGee. Damone had a fantastic offensive year. El Capitan was in the mid .300s of batting average for most of the season. Mariano posted his fourth straight season of a below 2 ERA. Posada had the most impressive year I've ever seen out of him behind the plate. Melky Cabrera showed himself to be "the fewtcha". Wang had a surprising season to some, but not to those who saw the promise in him last year. Like, there was so much blossoming on this team, you'd think they were serving Scotts Turf Builder in the pregame buffet.

So who was he a "distraction" to then? Giambi? Hmm. He did only have a .252 batting average...but the man has yet to figure out how to hit around "the shift" teams employ against him. Perhaps he was so busy taking it upon himself to get A-Rod to man up or whatever that he couldn't focus on changing his swing a bit. Was Alex distracting Randy Johnson so hard that Randy had to keep turning around to look at the ADD-kid that he hurt his back? Was Jaret Wright so freaked out by A-Rod's nose-picking that he could never pitch past the 6th inning for fear Alex might wipe his boogers on him? Was he "distracting" Hideki Matsui to the point that Hideki was too busy paying attention to A-Rod mooning the teacher when he should've been fielding, and broke his wrist as a result? I somehow think not.

Oh, and ahem. THEY WON 97 GAMES WITH THAT PASTE EATER. And what was that? Oh, the best record in the AL and tied for the best in baseball. If I can have someone "distracting" me to that point of success in my life, please sit them in my cubicle or in my room when I need to be writing my book.

Perhaps we are talking about the playoffs then? That maybe the entire lineup slumped after Game 1, and Moose wasn't lights-out when he needed to be, and RanJo and Jaret Wright plain sucked because they were so concerned with what Alex was doing? Saying this is as lame as suggesting that maybe they were "distracted" by Jeter's greatness in Game One and subsequent questions regarding that, and that they felt they didn't need to do anything because Jeter and his clutchiness will always get it done.

Or maybe they're a bunch of grown men who I would hope to god have learned by now that what concerns someone else isn't their problem. Aww, the media's asking questions about him -- I'm sure it's hard to think up a bullshit response or simply say "No comment." If it's because they feel "pressure" because they need to pick up where A-Rod's not producing -- it's still THEIR JOB to go out and get a hit when it's needed. And they're not producing either. I don't care if he's striking out or hitting a home run ahead of you, you're still being paid to get on base for yourself.

So, really, I think the only one A-Rod is distracting is you from paying attention to the rest of the team. And really, whose problem is that?

The "A-Rod Needs to Stop Whining About Media and Fans Booing Him" Argument: I know that I am not omniscient and can't possibly have my finger on the pulse of all the media out there, but when, preytell, did A-Rod have this big hissy fit about the media and alleged fans? I'VE complained about it to no end. So have some blogger friends 'o mine, Rudy Giuliani, Reggie Jackson, Brian Cashman and the random columnist. But A-Rod himself? The most I've heard out of him was the whole "They won't be happy till I hit a walk-off homer in a World Series" or whatever he said. And that? Was truthful. I've NEVER heard him blame his play on what the fans are doing or what Lupicass and Friends are writing about him. He was pretty much a boring soundbite all season regarding this, so I'd like to know just where the whole fable of his non-stop whinyness about this issue stems from.

The "A-Rod Can't Perform in the Playoffs" Argument: I'm going to lay off the whole "Uh, why aren't you just as mad at the rest of this candy-ass lineup for their lack of hitting" spiel for a sec and address this head on. He sucked this series. He sucked in the Angels series. He had a decent opening to the Sox series, then fell apart (ahem, as did almost everyone else on this team, ahem). I will tell you this -- they don't get to that 2004 ALCS without A-Rod. I was at the game he tied up (and almost won, if the ball had gone a few more inches) for the Yanks in Game 2. In Game 4, with the Yanks rallying back from a nice defecit (thanks to the, you guessed it, shaky pitching staff), he pretty much manufactures the winning run all by himself. This was his first playoff series in Pinstripes, mind you. It's one of only four that he's played in.

Let's see. In the last four playoff series (that A-Rod has also been involved in), Jorge has hit .222, .259. .239 and .500 respectively. With 0 RBI in that first series, 2, 2, and 2 in the next (keep in mind those last two RBI were completely meaningless as the Yanks were being mauled at that point -- because I know this is an argument A-Rod's detractors like to trot out, that being how meaningless his hits/RBIs can be). People weren't crying for his head -- oh, right, because he's a True Yankee. So let's look at the Giambino then. He...well, lookey here. He never saw a playoff game in 2004 because he was popping roids (to cheat, mind you, not for his health) like candy and nearly killing himself. I wonder if that hurt the Yankees at all? Naaaaah. Anyway, so in the other two series he's seen since A-Rod's been here, he hit .421 and .125 respecitvely, with a whopping four RBI in total for both series. I guess because he takes his criticsms like a man, he gets a free pass.

Now, for Mr. Sucktastic himself, A-Rod -- .421, .258, .133 and .071, 3 RBI, then 5, 0 and 0. Hmm. So he was productive in two series and sucked in two. But so have the guys listed above (and others I don't have the energy to bring up right now). And they get to play without people like me having to go in and defend them on their blogs. Nice.

The "He Isn't Liked In the Clubhouse/Isn't Liked by the Team Captain" Argument: This one is rich because in today's Daily News, they ask Jim Leyritz what the Yankees need to do to win the Series again. He says they need someone like himself to light a fire in their belly. He doesn't say anything about A-Rod, but they used this quote in their "Trade A-Rod Now" spiel. Interesting that in either 1992 or 1993 (probably before many even knew this team existed), someone (rumored to be Don Mattingly) left a note in the big-headed Leyrtiz's locker that read "There is No I in Team." That was a good few seasons before he became "clutch" in the playoffs. And let's not forget Reggie Jackson vs. Thurman Munson and Reggie vs. Billy. Yeah, he was great in the playoffs, but if you were running the team, he'd have been out of there simply because, ohmigosh, he wasn't liked!

This isn't high school, these are grown men. Yet everytime I see this argument, I have to wonder how many people are stuck in 90210 mode. And I don't see Jeter and A-Rod growing sideburns anytime soon, so whatever.


The "He's a Liability at Third" Argument: He was atrocious at third this season. Nobody knows why, for sure, but he did seem to come out of it the more the summer wore on. If he'd been god-awful the first two seasons, I'd be very concerned, but the fact that he had two pretty solid seasons defensively before this makes me think this to shall pass.

And stop using Chuck Knoblauch as a measuring stick. Just becauase he went all yippy for a few seasons following his bad one, doesn't mean A-Rod will. Who's Chuck Knoblauch, you ask? OY VEY.

The "If We Trade Him, We Can Get A LOT Back For Him" Argument: Sure, Johann Santana is interesting or any other big-name pitcher or Chone Figgins or any "role player" you could get for A-Rod. But remember why you want to trade Mr. Rodriguez here: You think he (with his 35-plus homers and mid-hundreds RBI totals per year, and MVP performance of last season) can't hack it in New York. Is there any guarantee that somebody from a small market team (hell, even a large market team) can come take the heat of New York? Uh, didn't you just want to ride A-Rod out on a rail because of this?

There's "A-Rod to the White Sox for some of their pitchers" (Uh, yeah, you really think the World Series champs from last year is going to deal their bread and butter?), "A-Rod to the Cubs for their pitchers" (What IS this? Pitching is at such a premium, and the last time I checked, a huge part of winning the game -- you truly think you're going to trade pitching for offense when you don't have a leg to stand on without said pitching?) And my favorite fan trade talk is A-Rod for...Adrian Beltre and Felix Hernandez. Are you laughing at this? It might be the best joke I've heard all year. Adrian had one breakout season three years ago, has been mediocre since then (and was pretty damn mediocre before said breakout year), while Fernandez posted a mediocre 4.52 era last season.

You're giving up an MVP First Ballot Hall-of-Famer, who, you know, actually makes a significant contribution (oh, wait, you don't see this. My bad.) for THAT? I'm going to go pop a few Advil now and chase it with a bottle of Vodka.

The "He's Hurting His Career By Staying Here and Should Go Somewhere Where He Can Grow Again": That's a nice thought. But seriously. Do you REALLY think the only reason he's being picked on right now is because he "can't produce" in New York? He IS producing. So he had an "off year," big fucking whoop. If he goes to Anaheim and cranks out a .342 batting average with 56 homers and 154 RBI, he's STILL going to have the stigma over him that he couldn't make it in New York (and that he's a stat-padder). Even if the media/fans don't say that (which they will, who am I kidding?), he's proven himself to be a bit of an obsessive sort, (as have the media regarding him) and that's always going to stick with him. He'll be considered a fantastic player, but when he had his chance to "prove himself on one of the biggest stages" he "failed". So he can't win if he's shipped out, either. But you'll be happy because the Yankees won't be missing the 113 runs he scored (third to Jeter and Damon) or his lifetime .573 slugging percentage or anything like that.

The "He Can Never Win With the Fans" Arguement: Yes, because I want the frat boys from Westchester — who come to one game a year decked-out in the Yankee finery they bought two days ago, who think Luis Sojo is still on the team, who drink about seven beers apiece (by the third inning), who get pissed off when people in their section don't join in The Wave they're trying to start, who read Mike Lupica and believe all the shit they hear on Baseball Tonight (when they watch it once a month), who start booing A-Rod because it's is the Livestrong bracelet of 2006 — to be the ones making the decisions for my team. (Do I really need to insert an eyeroll here?)

Real fans aren't booing A-Rod, and real fans know that their frustrations shouldn't lie with just one person on a team. You know, the team RBI leader. (And before you start in with those those "non-clutch" RBI or whatever, let me remind you that before he came to New York and was So Much Better Than Derek Jeter or whatever, he had a lot of big stats, including RBI totals. Were THEY all "clutch"? Probably not -- yet it didn't deter people from thinking he was the best thing since sliced bread. But put a Yankee uniform on him, and now it's simply not good enough. Interesting.)

We don't know that it's the media and fans and ensuing hullabaloo that made him have this "off" year anyway. The only time I heard him offer anything in the way of an excuse was when he vaguely alluded to the fact that he was hurt and didn't want to talk about it (and which everybody promptly pounced on him for making a "convenient" excuse) And I'm sure if he does bring anything up, even if it's the truth, he'll get shit on for it. Because he really can't win with some people.

But that's not a reason you deal a future Hall of Famer.

Think of all the promising players who came here and couldn't deal with the pressure...and actually sucked. Think of all the players who DON'T want to come to New York because of the "pressure". Yet he has a no-trade clause because, gasp, he wants to stick it out here. Instead of pushing this dude out the door because you are frustrated with the entire team (but refuse to admit this to yourself), why not keep that in mind -- for all the crap he's taken (and not "whined and complained" about it) he wants to find a way to win. Here. Perhaps he knows he doesn't need people behind him to actually accomplish something, but I'd like to think it'd be a lot more fun if they actually did.

The song has remained the same since 2002 -- the Yankees need pitching. Like, four quality starting pitchers and not 2 1/2. With some bullpen help that isn't 74 years old. And they need the ENTIRE LINEUP not to choke in the postseason like they've done since then. You look at the 2002 ALDS, 2003 World Series, 2004 ALCS, 2005 ALDS and 2006 ALDS it has been some combination of the those two things that bounced them. NOT ALEX RODRIGUEZ. Yes, it is frustrating to see him do lousy in big situations. But it's just as frustrating to see it out of the other 8 batters and 2 1/2 pitchers when it counts.

You trade him, he will come back to haunt you, I guarantee it. But more importantly, if you're trading him because you think he's the only problem and that the Yankees will get another title once he's gone...well, that's your opinion and you're entitled to it.

I just happen to think it sucks.

Why I Don't Listen to Sports Talk Radio

So my dad and I were just driving around, looking for a sincere pumpkin patch, and listening to ESPN radio. Of course, the talk is of the Mets/Cards series, but it slowly turns into the exact reason why I 1) Have lost complete patience with the sports talk-radio format and 2) I hate living in a two-team town: It becomes about the Yankees, more importantly, how much Yankee fans suck. Now, I know the station wants to do this to stir up the ire of both fanbases and get people calling in. But it also brings out the fans I hate the most: The Stupid Ones.

For example: this dude calls in and is all "I was at a Mets/Marlins game and these 20-something girls come in in Yankee gear and start harassing the Mets fans. I don't understand Yankee fans. Met fans NEVER do this."

Au contraire, mon frere. I recall a game two years ago (it was either the Bloody Sock Game of Doom or a Tampa Bay/Yankees game in September -- I don't have the Journal handy. All I know is that it was just me and Tonya and some nasty weather) where in two teenage girls in Mets shirts sit ahead of us, and proceed to mock Yankee fans and talk about 1986 and generally be obnoxious and screamy for the entirety of the game. It prompted the guys next to us to be all "Were you even alive in 1986?" Also, let's not talk about the Met fan who referred to a dear friend of mine as a "whore" and wished death on her grandmother because she has the audacity to root for the Braves and Yankees. Ahem. But I've never gone around and assumed that all Met fans behave this way. I can see the forest for the trees.

And I KNOW my fanbase has assholes. Do I see it in action? Not really -- the people I hang with are classy as hell (unless provoked, and even then they stick to the facts). But I can't claim ignorance simply because of what I see. I am not the mighty and all knowing. I've heard stories second-hand, and I know the bandwagon is overflowing -- the jackass people who refer to themselves as Yankee fans are out there and deserve to be bitchslapped. Had the caller left off the whole part about "Met fans NEVER do this," (and not insinuated that all Yankee fans behave this way) I would've been on his side completely.

I also know for all the Stupid Fans and Harassers out there, the majority are not like this. Like I said, they probably let this blowhard on the air to stir up blowhard Yankee fans and start an on-air war of words. But it is a disturbing concept, especially when the talk of the day should be about what the Cardinals and Mets did the night before and what they're going to do tonight, and not about people painting fans of the other team in town all the same color while being ignorant to your own.

...and then they started in on the "A-ROD MUST BE TRADED. NOW." talk from a guy who said he hasn't been a diehard fan since "The True Yankee Days", and I just lost it completely. But that is a post that is forthcoming...

Thursday, October 12, 2006

I Heart The Office

Any show that can work in "On the Wings of Love", badly sung — and accompanied by a recorder, no less — is a show after my own heart.

Though Jim has to get away from Stamford and now. I don't care if he's flirting with a girl I share a name with. She's NOT PAM.

Oh lord. I've turned into a 'shipper. I am so ashamed of myself... or not.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Dear God

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Cory Lidle?

Oh man, this puts a lot of shit in perspective.

Just...god.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Oh, Sweet Sarcasm, How I Love Thee

Best. A-Rod post. EVER. (And no, that's not sarcastic.)

Just a snippet, so you'll want to go over and read the whole, AWESOME thing yourself:

In the end, Cano and the other Real Yankees tried so hard to overcompensate for A-Rod killing their chances, they hurt their own abilities to hit. Jason Giambi (whose YGH quotient almost equals his HGH levels) wracked his brain so hard last night trying to figure out a way to save the team, Torre had to rest him in this deciding game. Even though he’d have been useful against Jeremy Bonderman, who Tigers’ manager Jim Leyland said struggled with good lefties, he just didn’t have the mental stamina to play today, at least according to his manager.

If A-Rod could only handle it, then the Giambino would have been there today.

Let’s not forget A-Rod's succubus effect on the pitchers. Mike Mussina tried his hardest to keep A-Rod’s imminent failure out of his mind. After all, when he tossed A-Rod under the bus before, no matter how deserving the third baseman was, it was not good for the team chemistry. So he tried to keep his mouth shut and do his job. But when the Tigers were rallying in Game Two, Mussina knew that A-Rod was going to let the team down. So he tried to be fine. He tried to be perfect. And in the end, he failed.

Nay, A-Rod failed.


Thanks to June for pointing it out.

And A-Rod's the Head Case?

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you, Gary Sheffield:

"We were worrying about all of that stuff, and we still had a game to play. If I'm on the other side, and all of a sudden they're putting Rodriguez eighth and putting me or Jason on the bench, you wonder what's going on. Those guys [the Tigers] were asking me about it. I think it boosted their morale. It gave them confidence they didn't have.

"[Tigers manager] Jim Leyland took advantage of that. He can make you believe anything. He can put a fire under your belt like you never had before in your life.

"Not to make excuses, but we didn't have that."


And I give you... Gary Sheffield:

"I knew a lot of stuff was going to come out soon after we lost but I didn't expect the finger to be pointed at Joe," Gary Sheffield said. "I didn't think anybody would point the finger at Joe because he is a hero in New York."

Asked if Torre deserves blame for two straight first-round exits, Sheffield said it goes to the players.

"It's always on the players," Sheffield said. "I don't care, it's always on the players."



Now, I liked that Gary's first quote was somewhat in defense of A-Rod (and please don't get me started on the "Oh, OK! Let's get rid of A-Rod because the most productive third baseman in recent Yankee history is the sole reason they can't win a World Series. He's a 121-non-clutch-RBI distraction that stopped this team from being the 1998 Yankees re-incarnated. AND HE GOES OUT IN 98-DEGREE WEATHER WITHOUT HIS SHIRT ON. OMG!!! He must die!!! They don't need starting pitching and the lineup to stop flaking out all around! They need to get rid of his pretty boy ass! ") but don't be a fucking hypocrite.

Then again, I guess I can't trust the media worth a damn and maybe Gary didn't say anything remotely close to any of this.

Is it February yet?

Point/Counterpoint

For a different view of how the Yankees can be bad for baseball, please check out Philly2Hoboken's response to my previous post.

Monday, October 09, 2006

A Little Bit of This and That

Things comforting me today:

-- All the Yankee hats/jackets I saw this morning. I swear, in my ten-minute walk, I saw one every few feet. It was so lovely. I can never leave New York.

-- The brownies Rana made for me. Because everyone knows that losing sucks, but at least a little chocolate can soften the blow just a bit.

Saw this on Shannon's blog, and I gotta say, she sums it up pretty well:

But if there was one thing I could change, it would be the hate for my team that everyone who is not a Yankees fan seems to have. This tangent is brought on by a number of things, the foremost of which being I just saw that Tommy Lasorda "October is a time to root against the Yankees!" commercial because it got me upset all over again. I'm sick of every other baseball fan hating the Yankees just on principle. I'm sick of people hearing "Yankees fan" and automatically writing me off as a bandwagon asshole. I'm sick of my team and my fans always being the bad guys, the evil ones. I'm just so tired of it. I'm tired of people making me feel guilty for loving the Yankees, for treating me like I'm less of a fan than they are because my team has had success. I'm tired of feeling like I have to apologize for it. I don't think it's fair.

I'm sure the haters would be all "Aww, pity poor Yankee fans" but seriously. A competitive team every year is awesome. Having to take such shit for being a fan (and I'm not talking about good-natured ribbing here) is not. I mean, you deal with it and know it comes with the territory, but every now and then I'd like it if people didn't just assume I was a bandwagoner/omigodderekjeterismyhusband person the second I say I'm a fan, and would understand that I love my team as much as they love theirs, and that contrary to popular belief, the good Yankee fans actually outnumber the assholes. Like every other team. I know every story needs a villain, but can we just find a new one already?

And with this year marking the seventh year in a row a different team has won the World Series, can the whole "Yankees are bad for baseball" crap just stop already? I can't see how they're that detrimental to the game 1) when they have the biggest road-attendance in the sport and 2) Haven't stopped lots of "underdogs" from taking the whole shebang. If you haven't learned by now that a big payroll means jack, then you need to get your head out of Mike Lupica's ass.

And some nice photos from my weekend at Seneca Lake:

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This is what happens when you don't have a tripod. The moon falls out of the sky...

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...or looks like a Bat signal for Mickey Mouse.

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Just a cute little duck.

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Peaceful looking water that does not fortell the disappointment about to come later that day. SIGH.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

In Which I am The Sad Clown

The only good thing I can say about yesterday (aside from the whole joyfulness of getting to see Hollis and Chris get married) is that I didn't have to see It. I had to hear a chunk of It on the car radio, but I didn't have to see the abysmal excuse for a season ender with my own two eyes. And then I had the distraction of the wedding reception for a few hours so I wasn't allowed to react right away, meaning nobody got strangled or I didn't bawl uncontrollably until my eyes fell out. It worked out for the best.

Before all the badness of the game, there was a reading at the ceremony from Paul's Letters to the Corinthians, and of course my brain went and processed it like a baseball fan. In fact, if you are a diehard fan of anything, it could probably apply: Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil, but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. Of course, by the time I got the text from Erica/phone call from my father that the game was over, I wasn't feeling patient, kind or persevere-y. And thus I spent the rest of the night trying to push the game (and what's to come in the next few weeks) out of my head. But I have to deal with it now.

I can't read the papers today, and there are even some Yankee blogs I'm going to avoid for awhile. I just don't want to hurt anymore than I already do, and people going off about who's getting fired or how much A-Rod sucks (conviently forgetting the whole lineup was sucktastic the past two games, but he's got the target on his back, so whatever) or how money can't buy you everything...some of what they say is true, some of it not, and all of it is painful. There is just no point for me to dump bitterly-written salt into a gaping wound.

I'm not ready for this season to be over. In year's past, I'd been majorly bummed, but almost relieved when the Yanks got knocked out, if only because the battling with Boston (in the regular season and playoffs) would just take the life out of me and I needed to sleep again and heal my burgeoning ulcer. But this? It wasn't supposed to end so soon. And not this badly. These next six months are always tough, but it's going to be tougher since I wasn't ready to say goodbye yet and the hope I'd built up was frozen solid by the sudden inability and fickleness of the team. And the next six months are going to be chockfull of negativity. I wish I could escape to a nice non-tabloid getting, ESPN-deficient island until April, but I suppose what does not kill us makes us stronger. Or something.

As I packed up my hotel room this morning, I tried to go over what went wrong. Why did the lineup just shrivel up and die? Why did Torre keep f'ing with the batting order? Why couldn't he motivate this team? Why couldn't the Captain? How could a team that looked lights-out and dominant for a five-game sweep against their biggest rival look completely...blah...the past three games? How come they could overcome a 9-run defecit back in May, but couldn't come back from one run down on Thursday? As I heaved up my suitcase and backpack to head to the lobby to check out, I decided that I couldn't come up with any answers, but that the most frustrating thing about it all is that as a fan, you have no control over what the team can or can't do.

But you can hope the next six months go quickly, cross your fingers that you still recognize this team in spring, ignore the haters and put your Yankee hat on.

Love never fails.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

RISP? I'll RISP Your Ass if You Don't Step it Up

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*$^@%#$%$)!@^*&Simon and Garfunkel, this is UNACCEPTABLE.

I am going away for two days and when I come back, this had BETTER be rectified. Or The Chicken will come after you with his inflatable bat, and I assure you, Yankees, that isn't something you'd be looking forward to.

Keep in Mind, I Actually Have to Work, Too

I think this is only the second time in my life as an adult Yankee fan that I've had to deal with a playoff game at work. And on a deadline day no less. I hope my co-workers like wild-eyed, head-spinning-off, pacing, frothing-at-the-mouth, muttering-to-one's-self KB, especially since not being able to watch it is going to make me all the more, um, insane.

Will have to make do with headphones and "watching" on Yahoo when Sterling and/or Waldman inevitably send me over the edge.

Ahh. I LOVE October!!!!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

At Least I Get to Catch Up on My TV Viewing

So, the rain-delay-turned-rain-out has given me the opportunity to watch Lost live, and I have a theory. So if you are Dexter or anyone else who hasn't seen it yet and reading this, cover your eyes:

I think The Others got Jack's info from him. He had injection marks in his arm -- they probably gave him truth serum and are using his words against him for some psychological plot. They're not some mighty and all-knowing group. And if this is the case, I'm going to be very pissed off because one of the things I like best about the show is that I can't guess what's going to happen. And other than the first five minutes, this was a snooze of an opener. Blah.

And 45 minutes into The Nine and I think it's the most over-hyped show of the season.

Why the hell couldn't they be playing baseball tonight? SIGH.

I'M NOT THERE, I SWEAR

You can't blame the rain on me this time.

But I can blame the dumbasses who thought up the 8 p.m. start time. This game is SO not ending till past midnight, and, just, ARGH.

Presents from the Past

So Jason just brought in a bunch of his old baseball cards, and among them? Lots of our friends from the early 1990s Yankees. I mean, he has FIVE Scott Kamienicki cards, four Greg Cadarets and a real, live artist's rendering of Kevin Maas outside the Stadium. All your faves are here: Mike Humphreys, Mel Hall, Andy Stankiewwicz, Matt Nokes and the great Alvaro Espinoza. I was like, "Little did you know when you were collecting these that 14 years later you'd meet someone who could truly appreciate their beauty."

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Kevin Maas: See the fewtcha!

It also made me truly, utterly and completely appreciative of the team that's currently wearing Pinstripes. Like, seriously. Mental hugs for Jeter and A-Rod and Sad Clown and Moose and everyone.

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

October! Baseball! Fox! Woo!

-- One minute into the broadcast and already I want to murder Fox. WTF with the Audioslave video? I mean, you know this game is already going to go late, so why not add a completely irrelevant musical montage? 11:45 end time for the game? Sign me up!

-- Why is Jeanne Zelasko wearing Liberace's coffin lining and soap opera special occasion jewelry?

-- Oh, here comes the first A-Rod A-nalysis, only nine minutes into the post season. My guess is it'll get rehashed in A-Rod's first AB. ETA: Yes it does! I am so clairvoyant! Or this issue has just gotten pathetically predictable.

-- I did not miss you, Joe Buck, in your conspicuous absence from the Fox booth during the regular season. Even though you wouldn't let us forget you in those creepy Holiday Inn commercials. I never thought there'd be something worse than bedbugs that you could pick up in hotel, but there you go.

-- Shut up, Chewboken and your stupid stomping. I might be missing something important in the pregame show...bwah!

-- I wonder how many people in the Stadium tonight area actually Yankee fans? I'd love it if in the future, there could be some kind of retinal scan that tells ticket takers if the people coming in in the playoffs have watched any games that year. And if the answer is no, their ticket spontaneously combusts and they aren't allowed to bring their front running ass to any important game.

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-- The Yankees bust-out third inning? Brought to you by The Yankee Chicken. He wasn't watching until then. I do not think it's a coincidence.

-- I love the smiles on the guys early in the game. They look like they're having a good time. And it keeps the agita at bay for a bit.

-- Quote of the night provided by Jason via text-message: "Giambi is so meaty that if I were a cannibal, I'd want to - no, love to - eat him."

-- Denzel Washington is the only celebrity there who doesn't annoy me in some way. Could Melania Trump LOOK any more bored? Isn't there an evil spawn with dollar-sign pupils you and the Donald should be home tending to?

--BAH. The SAP button isn't working. We're stuck with McCarver and Buck. SIGH.

--Um, Fox? I know you want to get the essence of the city into the game, but when you show the glittery subway sign in Times Square, I'm gonna know that you can't catch a train to Yankee Stadium from there. I'm just saying.

-- It's nice that McCarver and Buck like the Tommy Lasorda/MLB campaign, because MLB lost me at the whole "rooting against the Yankees is a great part of the postseason" ad. Shut up, MLB.

-- You know, I'm beginning to forget what the first pitch of an inning looks like.

-- If I never hear the term "soft underbelly" again, it'll be too soon.

-- 5 for 5?! I'd just like to know where that "overrated" survey about Derek Jeter is right about now. Oh, right, probably playing golf somewhere.

-- What is UP with Fox and their obsession with showing closeups of any player/fan looking forlorn/down-trodden/angsty? And always in the late innings. Like, it doesn't make the game more dramatic for me -- it just makes me want to not watch and listen to the radio, and that's saying something.

-- A three-hour game? What, four and a half hours isn't good enough for you? Hmph.

Gag Me With the Gridiron Crap

Chad Bohling, the director of optimal performance, set up a screen and turned off the lights. What the Yankees saw were clips of "Rudy" and "Any Given Sunday" mixed in with highlight clips of themselves for positive reinforcement.

I'm not sure what the original source is, but I just saw this over at Shannon's blog, and I have to say, this is something that has irritated me for years: There are so many motivational baseball movies out there, and yet the Yanks ALWAYS focus on...football. Like, yeah.

For those of you who don't get to go to games, let me explain my angst. In the early innings a few months ago, there'd be this whole big JumboTron shout-out to Friday Night Lights, with Billy Bob Thornton going on and on about whatever clich├ęs football coaches spew in movies, interspersed with Yankee highlights. When the Yankees are losing late in the game, we get the whole "No one comes into our house" spiel from Rudy. And every now and then, Any Given Sunday rears its ugly, boring-ass movie head. I don't know, maybe I'm being silly here, but that ending of The Natural? A LITTLE MORE FITTING.

But we don't even need the movies to be "inspirational" in the traditional sense. If I were the director of optimal performance (what do you have to major in to be that? Because that job title rules.), I'd show them Major League — show them the Yankees being hated and losing to f'ing Tom Beringer and Corbin Bernsen. Show them the lamely-named For Love of the Game and Kevin Costner no-hitting them in their house (as a Tiger, no less). Show them Fever Pitch (GAH. Almost made my head explode to write that)...no explanation necessary there. For god's sake, light a fire under them with celluloid negativity!

Or if all else fails, god damn it, show them World Series highlights from 1996-2000, even the good stuff from 2001. That there is some inspiration if ever I saw it. It's applicable, unscripted and geez, it's baseball. And baseball done right at that.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Where/When the Hell...

...is the Yankee Rally this year? MLB is doing their Rally Monday thing again, and so far I've seen that the Twins, Dodgers, As and Tigers are all having events tomorrow. I know the Mets are doing something Tuesday. Last year, the MLB-sponsored Yankee rally was in Bryant Park and it drew a big crowd. This year? WTF?

ETA: And the confusion continues. Note that in the subhead, it says "EIGHT playoff-bound clubs celebrate postseason berths," yet only seven teams are listed. MLB or the Yankees really dropped the ball on this one, I'm afraid. And if it's a superstition thing on the Yanks' part, I suggest they get the hell over it. It's going to look mighty stupid for the Mets to have a rally in the same city, while the other team in town snubs its nose at it. It's for the fans anyway, dumbasses.

Thoughts on The Last Day of the Regular Season

Man, the Bernie love is killing me. In a good way. Seeing him fight a smile while coming to bat, and while at second, and hearing the crowd chanting his name...damn, it's something else.

And although it's kinda disappointing that El Capitan fell out of contention for the batting title today, to see him snag that ball at short earlier with a well-timed leap, well, that's what he's all about. And a .343 average? Yeah, not much to sneeze at.

I've decided what I want from the post season is this: Bernie to do well should he get in there. A-Rod to beat the living snot out of the ball. RanJo to be at least 75 percent the old RanJo. Mo to still be magical. The bullpen to hold it together. Utter dominance from this lineup. The crowds to be balls out in their cheering and make the Stadium shake, foresaking the fucking wave for the Let's Go Yankees chant, complete with foot stomping.

And then I want the Yankees to take it all. And fuck everyone else.

It's No Hoboken Idol, But...

I seriously have the awesomest friends on the planet. I mean, I'm not sure there are many people who would actually turn out to celebrate the birthday of an inanimate object, especially when they aren't feeling well/coming from a long day of prior commitments/going to other commitments after celebrating said inanimate object's "birth." But my homies came out and showed their appreciation for The Chicken, and not once did anyone call me crazy. Also, they were getting Italian food and cake (thanks, Ken!) for free, so maybe they weren't about to question my motives. But still. They rule.

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I bet your birthday cake wasn't this awesome.

And then when the party night-owls bust out a game of Scattergories till 3 a.m., where you learn that bathtubs can be sticky, "labium" is actually a word, gynecologists and grand marshalls might wear a uniform, faucets might be considered furniture, "I kill you, you're dead" can be considred a crime for the letter "i", Opening Love's Door: the Seven Lessons could actually come in handy and that Laosian food is sweeping the nation, well, it makes for an awesomer time.

Why can't The Chicken have a birthday every day of the year? Wait a minute...why can't he?