Thursday, December 16, 2004

For Tradition's Sake

What the hell did Pedro say at the press conference today? There was this one line, after he was asked about money, which got replayed on several sports reports, where Pedro said, "I've been a millionaire since I was 23. I was already a millionaire when I got to Boston. So don't think it's a dump in the street..."


And after he said it, all the reports broke into laughter. All I can think of is that he was saying "bump in the street," like "bump in the road." But what sense does that make? And if he did say that, why did everybody bust out laughing?

Somebody clear that up for me, please.

I'm afraid the New York media (and therefore the New York fans, and, all of baseball)will soon discover that Pedro is an awesome, fun-lovin' guy, who's one of the craftiest, smartest pitchers of all-time, and not an A-hole who "can't beat the yanks." And they'll assume he must have changed into a "new Pedro," when we've known all along how great he his. Except for those of us who have tried so hard to run him out of town. I heard Shaughnessy on 1050 ESPN radio saying how he doesn't know how Pedro could leave the "cushy existence" he had in Boston. I don't know, maybe he read the papers, or worse yet, got a glimpse of boston burnt dogs or tree frogs or skirt hogs or whatever. What's not brought up on that site, by the way, is how Pedro's initial statement in the Mike & the Mad Dog interview was to say how much he loved the Boston fans and how we'll always have a place in his heart.

The 'Big Mullett to the yanks' deal is not official yet, but if it is, good to see the yanks continue to give up prospects.

I met Chan at the Westchester Mall (it's roughly halfway from my area to his area) tonight for our annual "Try To Do Christmas Shopping But Not Get Much Done Except Buy Pyromania On CD For Myself Because I Only Have It On Tape And Vinyl" trip.

It's a weird tradition. It started when Chan moved down to southern Westcheter after college, and we'd meet up to hang out, while getting some shopping out of the way. Last year was the year I realized that we've been doing the same thing for a bunch of years, therefore, we've got a tradition going. So then I got all excited for it, totally over-hyping it in my head. Which lead, of course, to the trip being kind of a disappointment last year. But nonetheless, the tradition continued this year, on the downside of it's once promising career. I bought two things for myself, one thing for other people. Like I told Chan, I can't get anything done unless I know it's the last minute. Also, this is the first Christmas of the millennium where I've been girlfriend-less, so that takes away about 80% of my shopping list. Part of me is relieved to know I don't have to go to Pottery Barn or Brookstone or Brooks Brothers or Crate & Barrel or the Craft Basket or Old Navy or the Gap or Moisturizer Emporium or Shampoo Shack or Fragrance Hut. In fact, I don't have to go to Bed, Bath OR Beyond. But another part of me misses draggin' Chan into Conditioner Corners, so I wouldn't be embarassed to talk to the supermodel-type behind the counter about what my girlfriend likes in a conditioner. It would make me feel good I guess, or even proud of myself, not because I was buying material things for my sig. other, but because I was doing something that I probably just wouldn't do for anyone else. I guess the harsh reality of all of this is, I lost Nomar, Pedro, and my girlfriend in the same year, as well as two friends who actually died, as opposed to just going somewhere else. I've said it before: Boy, did the Sox pick the right year to win the World Series. Otherwise I might be talking to you all from the great internet in the sky right now.

There were lots of Vinnys and Anthonys at the mall in their yankee jackets. My latest thing is to put a big smile on my face the second I see a yankee fan, so in that split second where they look at me before looking away, they'll know that I know that they know that I know that they know....

World Champs.

[Come on, you know how all those Long Island/Bronx/Westchester "yaaankees baby"-style guys with moustaches are always named Vinny or Anthony--not an Italian stereotype. I am part Italian. My great uncle's name is actually Guido.]

I went to today and watched Pedro's press conference announcement of his new allegiances, etc. I don't know why I did that: I knew it wouldn't make me any happier about the situation.

Turns out, I was right again, of course.

I dunno. I love Pedro. And I hate him, too. There are just some things he says, a lot of things he says, that can be interpreted either way, ya know? Maybe he's a smooth-talking con man. Or maybe he's a sincere, passionate individual. Maybe he means respect, maybe money. Maybe really does care for the Boston fans, and it was just Theo's way of doing business that he didn't like. Or maybe he's a mercenary after all.

I think too much.

But I hope the media firestorm, all this fuss and ruckus, all the implications, all the accusations, the parting shots, I hope it all dies down quickly. I hope we can all just settle comfortably into our new situations and let bygones be bygones.

Because I still want to cheer for him, when it's all said and done. I still want to like him. Because he's Pedro Martinez, and there's nobody quite like him. Not on the field, not off it.

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Location: Rhode Island, United States