“Damn it, Nason…I look forward to three things on Monday. One is your blog, the others are (I honestly forgot…).” – Big Papa, co-worker.
Yes, I didn’t do one last night. I got back late from Sin City (phenomenal), a impromptu bbq/street hockey game (I have a future in the NHL..I can feel it), and a late-night work session (what 8am meeting?) along with a viewing of The Contender. Estimated fall asleep time: 1:30 am. Wake up? 6:30 am. It’s amazing what a large DD coffee can take care of though.
So we’re here and I’m about to disappoint you if you don’t like sports. If you do, go grab a drink. If you don’t, let’s catch up next week, shall we? Same place? You pick the time and bring along your Young MC discs if you can. One note though: I finished Fargo Rock City: A Rock Odyssey in Rural North Dakota and thought it was outstanding. Basically, it’s a book on growing up in the 80’s and discovering bands like Motley Crue, Poison and the era of glam/heavy metal, all while in the rockin’ state of ND. For those of us that grew up in this era, I think it’s most enjoyable. No wonder it’s by Nason-fave author Chuck Klosterman. You can get this for like $5 used on Amazon and I highly recommend it.
Now to the BASEBALL.
–If you read ESPN.com’s page 2, you might have caught a column last week by David Schoenfield. If you need a good blood boil, read this:
Pissed yet? So was I. Apparently, enough other people thought so too and emailed him enough times to crash his Yahoo account. Too bad they took it off the site before I could get to him too.
I also am getting this same ‘Enough about the Red Sox’ attitude in the office as well. If you’ve read previous entries, you know about the mix of sports allegiances I have to work with. While interesting, it can also be annoying. The day after the Sox WS win (which I should have blown off) should have been a New England holiday, but was spent listening to people say, “They finally won, huh? Now you guys can stop bitching, right?” and “It’s not that big of a deal, is it?” If I had a pistol, I might be writing this from prison right now.
Part of really loving and following a sports team is the shared experiences you have with other fans like you. To say you get that following the Sox is an understatement. It’s almost like a birthright into a stressful but amazing existence. When I went to San Fran last summer to catch three Sox/Giants games, the amount of Sox fans out there was amazing to see. So to have metaphorical water dumped on your pizza the night after a World Series win or while watching The Ring Ceremony, it sucks. And since most workplaces frown on interoffice violence, I can’t really do anything about it. After reading this article, I really wanted to go off on this guy but he ran and hid before I could go to work.
Basically, if these fans, writers and media types don’t like the attention that the Sox are getting in the papers, don’t read them. If there’s another feature about the Sox breaking the curse on ESPN or NESN, change the channel. Simply don’t watch it or listen – it’s that easy. It’s a big friggin’ story that people are buying right now and will keep being pushed as long as registers are going off and ratings are going up. That’s what the media is all about, but yet the Sox fans are those feeling the brunt of fans who are left with a case of baseball blue balls because their team hasn’t won since the Yankees reawakened 20 years ago.
What non-Sox fans (and the new inherited ones that have jumped on since the WS win) don’t understand is that unless you’ve lived life as a Red Sox fan, YOU WILL NEVER UNDERSTAND. A cocky statement? Perhaps. But there is something about this team that’s very cultish and drives you to go great lengths to support it. One reader just traveled to spring training for a few games. Myself and five others are heading to Chicago for just one game in the historic Cubs/Sox series. There’s a damn message board that has a waiting list to get in. A waiting list!
My first Red Sox memory was back in 1988 when my dad took me to a game against the Kansas City Royals (I think). The first image I remember was seeing Wade Boggs take ground balls at third base. The color of green enveloped me as I was amazed at this sight I had only seen in pictures and on tv. I was hooked. After thousands of hours and dollars, shirts I can barely remember, grainy pictures brought to me by WSBK-38 via Sean McDonough and Bob Montgomery and every other great and awful memory, last October was the final payoff; a big fat check for all the taunts, tears and torment Red Sox fans have suffered. Shaking your head at the term ‘suffered’ when it comes to a baseball game? Proof-positive that you don’t get it and at this point, I wouldn’t bother trying. The T is full and is taking off for one of those stops that gets you near the street that connects to the avenue that brings you near Fenway Park.
And almost 17 years later from that glorious summer day in 1988, I, and tens of thousands of others, am finally enjoying the return of my investment and the fun tax collectors are trying to take it all away.
So to guys like Schoenfield, the Yankee fans who are beside themselves with jealousy as they flounder in last place and everyone else who is trying to belittle rather than enjoy, I have two simple primal words:
And also, don’t get blinded by the glare off the World Series rings.
And also also, we won!!! We really won!!!
While biding my time until Schoenfield comes out of his internet hiding cell, I was forwarded another story to read. This one was about the Philadelphia Eagles’ 2005 schedule and how it was unfair that the Patriots got an ‘easier’ schedule even though they were both champions of their respective divisions. Hmmmm…first off, New England won the Super Bowl so point 1 was out the window already. Overall, the article from Philly.com didn’t make any sense so I took 10 minutes and researched both the Patriots and Eagles’ 2004 and 2005 schedules. Not surprisingly, I found that all his points was invalid in every possible sense. So I decided to write him a reponse and point out the errors. I got a shitty response apologizing for one of the points he made but not backing down from anything else he erroneously wrote. Unbelievable.
In case you want to read this crap, click below. I think you have to sign up for free, but it’s worth it:
My email to him:
Rich – a friend of mine in the office forwarded me your Patriots/Eagles piece about the NFL schedule being unfair to the Eagles. After about 10 minutes of research, I can pretty much sum up that you did ZERO investigating into your column. I’m also sending this to Aaron Knox, the Philly.com sports editor so he’s aware of what’s runnign on his pages.
Here’s what you missed by simply not comparing the two schedules both from last season and this one upcoming.
1) The Pats played the day after X-Mas last season. The Eagles did not.
2) The Eagles played two of their first three at home last season. The Pats did not.
3) The Patriots played six 1 pm games last season. The Eagles have “just” 5 this year?
3) This year, the Eagles play two of their first three at home. The Pats do not including playing AT Carolina and AT Pittsburgh. The Eagles? Against the lowly 49ers and the same Raiders this writer complains about.
4) The Patriots play back-to-back home games once this season. The Eagles do twice, including three in a row.
5) Finally, the Patriots play against THREE teams who made the playoffs in 2004 in their first five weeks. The Eagles? One.
This article is fruitless and by the data above, makes NO sense whatsoever. Can you possibly refute this? What do you have to say about your column now? I haven’t written sports for a paper in years, but still know a thing or about research.
Again, this is like two days past the Sox column, so I was a bit on edge.
For those of you that stuck around, it’s time for Random Thoughts!
–Is it just me or should the hip-hop industry be the next focus of Congressional hearings? Other than the Armed Forces, is there another business in the world where the workers are under constant fear of being killed or being put into hazardous situations? Just last week, my VH1 music news email featured the following headlines:
–“Benzino Slapped With Sexual Harassment Charges.” – He’s the former editor-in-chief of The Source, the industry’s biggest magazine. He had a running altercation with Eminem and also tried to be a rapper himself. Uh huh.
-“Foxy Brown Pleads Not Guilty To Nail-Salon Assault.” Didn’t Ill Na Na come out in 1997? What’s happened since then?
–“Michael Jackson’s Accuser’s Mother Takes Stand” –oops, we’re not talking about white guys. Sorry.
But you get the point. If you don’t hear about a murder or attempted murder within a day of following the hip-hop industry, then you’re listening to Will Smith.
–Self-checkout lines: How stupid are people, really? To watch people struggle with perhaps one of the greatest inventions in the last five years is mind-numbing to say the least. Designed to be the quick way out has now turned into the slowest possible way out thanks to old people and idiots. This should really be the role of supermarket cops – to police this areas and mace as needed.
–Finally, jokes submitted by a reader! Use at your local juice bar or church ice cream social!
1. I was so poor growing up .. if I wasn’t a boy … I’d have had nothing toplay with.
2. A girl phoned me the other day and said, “Come on over; nobody’s home. “I went over. Nobody was home.
3. During sex, my girlfriend always wants to talk to me. Just the other nightshe called me from a hotel.
4. One day I came home early from work I saw a guy jogging naked. I said to theguy, “Hey buddy, why are you doing that?” He said “Because you came home early.”
5. It’s been a rough day. I got up this morning put a shirt on and a button felloff. I picked up my briefcase, and the handle came off. I’m afraid to go to the bathroom.
6. I was such an ugly kid…When I played in the sandbox, the cat kept coveringme up.
7. I could tell my parents hated me. My bath toys were a toaster and radio.
’til next week,