Saturday, July 08, 2006

Triple Crown

It took the Devil Rays 18 innings to score after we left town. And it was one run in the ninth inning of a 5-1 loss. They better get a win out of this series, with Kris Wilson on the hill for Mr. Dunbar tomorrow. Before Wednesday, Wilson hadn't seen any action since '03.

Papelbon continues to be awesome, and we're back on proverbial fire. And David is going to threaten the all-time Red Sox single-season HR record. I hope I'm at Fenway for that.

A 2, 3, or 4 game lead at the break. Nice.

Tonight was "people we know" night in NYC. I met up with Pat and his girlfriend and we went down to St. Mark's before getting some Mexican food. First we saw a dude that plays in a band we know, and who used to be a Danbury scenester. He totally didn't recognize us and we totally decided not to bring attention to ourselves. He probably would've been too stoned to recognize us anyway.

Next up, while looking at DVDs, who was also browsing, but Little Steven Van Zandt himself. Best known to most folks as the dude on that show I don't watch, and to many others as "that garage rock radio show guy," to me he'll always be the guy doing weird things with his eyes, playing a ukulele, and putting his face really close to Bruce Springsteen's in the Glory Days video, the only video ever to mention Graig Nettles. (Eff Nettles, by the way.)

Finally, while walking along, suddenly Pat hugs a dude. It was someone he hadn't seen in eight years.

It's a big city, but a small world.

Anti-Slash Movement Gaining Momentum

I've mentioned my disdain of unnecessary and utterly confusing slashes before: Face/Off, Nutri/System, uh... I had some others, but I forgot what they were. I was just watching the commercials between Good Times and what appears to be a late-Chrissy era Three's Company, and I saw a Nutrisystem commercial. No slash! I did some research, and here's what I found:

"The Board of Directors has concluded that it is in the best interests
of the Company to amend the Certificate of Incorporation to change the Company's
name to "NutriSystem, Inc." from "Nutri/System, Inc." The Board believes that
retaining the forward slash in the Company's name may create unnecessary
confusion to potential customers attempting to access the Company's website, If a potential customer inserts the slash in the URL
address, they will not reach the Company's Internet website."

Thank you, internet! Score another one for Al Gore. And me. Face/Off 10 Year Anniversary DVD, watch your back.

Suicide Is Painless

Well, at least I'll get to see the end of the game on Fox, since the Mets game ended wasy before ours. Perfect. But noooooooooo. Fox has a little postgame report, and then signs off for the day. 4:30, we can't pre-empt this M*A*S*H* rerun!

I'm glad I at least have Castiglione and Trup to get me through. We're up 8-5 in the eighth after Lopez and the Hansen Brother got us out of a loaded/no out jelly in the seventh. Gotta hang on.

B-E Aggressive

How about a cartoon bee with a deep voice for a change? Jesus.

Ah, 2006

Things I can watch today at my house:

A kid in China dancing in his room to "The Hustle."
The story of how Ted Danson got his start in Hollywood.
Live video of some electrical wires in Las Cruces, New Mexico.
Footage taken on Mars by a robot.
Every Major League Baseball game except one.

Things I can't watch:

The damn Red Sox game.

Before you write in and tell me how the Fox thing works, understand that I know this. It just seems like if I'm paying the $160 so I can see my team play (they only missed one inning last night due to "technical difficulties!"--Fortunately we were the ESPN game so I switched over), they could make it so I could have the choice of games shown by Fox. I mean, I'd pay 5 bucks extra if it meant assuring I get all my team's games. I know Fox wants only one game shown in each area (unless you get two Fox stations, each of which is in a different region, hence making their whole story bullshit), but I'm paying extra here! Gimme the damn game. Every time.

The Red Sox were on two channels yesterday. I'd gladly trade one of those two for today's game.

And this Mets thing is killing me. They're playing the Marlins. What regions besides Florida and New York are going to show this game over Red Sox-White Sox? They might as well not show the game on Fox at all. The people in New York and Florida get their game anyway. And it's a doubleheader today! So they'll get to see their teams again, later, too. In a few weeks, it's Mets-Braves that will not let me see another Saturday Red Sox game. Great, because nobody in the nation ever gets to see the Atlanta Braves!

They could fix all this by keeping everything the way it is, while allowing people who pay money to see the "other" Fox game. Or, stop putting a New York team as one of the national games all the freakin' time.

Friday, July 07, 2006

1st Half Champs

Really funny start to this Empy post. Watch her space in the coming days, as she's in Chicago for the Sox-squared series.

Great showing by the good Sox tonight. Lester, Delcarmen, Timlin, even you-know-who. We looked like the pre-Devil Rays series Sox again. Good sign. First place at the All-Star break is guaranteed now. But I'm hoping for five up.

Tomorrow I'm screwed, as the game will be on Fox, with the Mets also on there. That's one bad thing about the Mets being good. More Fox games for them--meaning there are two teams that will bump the Red Sox off New York TV on summer Saturdays this season. I'll be getting screwed quite a bit in the upcoming weeks.

Oh, and Chan got me the burrito. And right now I'm "borrowing" the Kit Kat he's had burning a hole in the frige shelf. Turned out I salvaged this night after all.

Guillotine Night

Devil Rays fans, don't leave your seats. After tonight's game we'll cart out each Rays hitter and behead them. Don't worry, they'll probably be smarter afterwards. (Great job by Seo on the hill, though.)

First inning, Beelzebub Rays get second and third with no one out. The run should have scored by this time anyway, if it wasn't for a baserunning blunder. Baldelli comes up and lines out to short. Even though the game was just minutes old, I was yelling at the screen for the guy to just swing a little easier, and you've got a sac fly to center. Any ground ball also would've scored the run, as the infield was back. Same thing for the next hitter, Huff, who popped out. Before the next hitter struck out, to end the inning. This is off Jaret Wright, mind you.

In the third, it was Mr Dunbar's old pal, Chan Q. Umpire, who got him out of trouble. With a man on third and two out, Rocco (, Louie Rocco) clearly checked his swing with two strikes. The third base ump held up the fist, which is baseballese for "Thanks for the yacht, George." You know, I'd love it if some respected sportswriter were forced to watch a season's worth of Yankee games, so she or he could report back to the rest of the country just how many advantages they get. Because nobody believes me. I'm just some dude who calls for group decapitations for one loss in July.

In the next inning, classic Yanks, as Bernie, with two outs and a slug on second, tops a weak grounder that bounces over the pitcher and finds its way into the outfield. Giambi scores, and then I watch as the freaking Devil Rays can't muster up anything the whole game, and the one cheap run stands up. It ended as Huff decides he's already been beaten by Mariano, takes a sluggish hack, grounds weakly to the right side, puts his soon to be cut off if I had my druthers head down, and takes a fifty-five foot jog toward the vicinity of first.

To put it mildly, and to make it two Jerky Boys One references, I'm very angry at those little jerks.

But not to worry, we'll take care of our own pleasure (remember, baseball is not a business) against the Peckerwood Prostitutes, Honky Hose, White Sox, whatever you wanna call those midwestern Yankees. I'm not comparing them to Torre's Yanks, but Morrow's. Vic, that is. From the first Bad News Bears film.

Okay, I'm realizing now that Morrow was actually killed by having his head cut off. I didn't mean for this post to come full circle. I apologize to the Morrow family.

Before View

The Rays better be trying as hard this weekend against Mr. Dunbar as they did against us. Tonight, Jae Seo against Jaret "Five's About" Wright. Seo will see the arachnid (the NY which may or may not be interlocking) and cower like a fawn at an anti-fawn rally. Let's just hope Wright does his usual. Then they get Kazmir on Saturday, who should be fine, but with a slight chance of shitting the bed. And on Sunday, Mr. D throws Kris Wilson out there. All I'm sayin' is, get at least one, Tampa.

And we've got the evil-of-late White Sox. Let's take the ball and shove it up Ozzie's proverbial ass. I want a sweep. And a burrito, so, Chan, get home soon and go out and get us some Mexican.

Thursday, July 06, 2006


Went to Battery Park tonight. The place that's "down."
Lady Liberty was still there as expected. The noblest clicking embiggens the smallest pictures.

Same shot with less water and more birds. Bird.

Fritz Koenig's sphere that had been in the plaza of the World Trade Center, bruised and battered but mostly intact. And now a home to birds who don't know the difference between Bin Laden and Ian Bladergroen.

I was down there (with Chan, dragged him along) to see the Mates of State show at Castle Clinton, which was built for the War of 1812. By Joe Pepitone.

Not exactly set up for concerts. Even raising the camera wasy over my head, these were the best shots I could get of the band, which consists solely of a wife and husband.

Here they are after the show, posing for someone else's photo.

Looking over the wall of Castle Clinton, from inside, at lower Manahttan. It's less of a castle and more of a hollow ring.

True Sounds of Liberty, after the show, as the sun settededed.

And just to the right of that, Jersey. I hope your computer is, like, color.

How sweet is this 6?

As we started to leave the park, we heard some blues music playing. It was a different show, right nearby, at this mystery field, with a little area you could climb steps to, for this sweet view. (I also saw some opera singers this afternoon at Lincoln Center, for work. So I technically witnessed three different concerts in seven hours.)

On the platform I took that last shot from was an arch. Chan suggested I get the moon and the arch. Done and done, Chan, with you in the shot, too.

One more shot of the sunset over Jersey, from atop the mystery perch.

TSOL under what's now called "Chan's Arch." No, make that "Chan's Arch Deluxe." Great night overall, with perfect weather. Summer is rad.

Then we ate at Zen Palate. Then we went home. I didn't want to look at the Red Sox score on the internet, I decided it would be "better" if I just let it come on ESPN naturally. So, I waited for it, and up it came, 12-5 us. A blowout, I thought. Then I found out it was close in the ninth. A win is a win, though. Still 3 up on the nuclear missile testers.

Better Than Bad

With all of society's logging in and out and on and off, "log" has become one of English's most common words. Weird.

And, of course, the "log" in "blog" means, uh, "log."

Abe Lincoln never would've imagined it, back when he invented America. In his log cabin.

Asshat Trick

That's what I call losing three in a row to the Dr. Drays. Mighty, mighty DR is right.

You can't spell Jason Johnson without "Oh no! No! Ass." Why are you winding up (and sloooowly) with Carl Crawford on third? Forget Carl Crawford, I could've stolen home last night. From New York.

Tonight, I'm using the classic "I won't watch this time, so maybe they'll win." Actually, I'm not watching because I'm going to see Mates of State down at Castle Clinton tonight. They're the best group in the "Carni-Pop" genre. I totally just made up that term. Carnival, not carnivore.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

The Elusive NESsie

You Sox fans who live in New England* don't have to think of this stuff, but as an Extra Innings, I get all the games--sometimes it's the NESN feed, sometimes it's the other team's. It was the same deal when I had Note to mlb: Everyone hates this system. Why aren't we questioning this?

All I've ever wanted is the chance to watch the Red Sox on TV in my home. I finally have that, and Baseball Gods, don't think I don't appreciate it, but it's still just not right.

I'm not allowed to have a satellite dish, so basically I'm still in a position where there's nothing I can do--no amount of money I can pay--to just get this one network I want called NESN.

What year is this? Some kid can jump off his roof on a skateboard and simultaneously broadcast it to the entire world, but I can't get the one cable channel, no, the one TV channel I want.

I can choose to watch "Must Love Dogs" at any time, at the touch of a button. That's one step away from willing it to appear on my screen. But when it comes to baseball? Oh, we'll give you this elaborate system where you'll pay for a lot of stuff you don't want and as a bonus, you'll get to hear some scrub announcers doing your team's game. You'll feel right at home!

I'm paying $160 for every Red Sox game (except for when they play the Yanks or Mets or are on national TV, which makes up a huge chunk of the season), half of which are called by non-NESN announcers, and thirteen other games I have absolutely no interest in watching. How about this? I pay the same amount, and instead of wasting ten channels on me, give me one channel. NESN. Not even all the time. Just when the Red Sox are on. Sounds very simple to me.

Terrible job, powers that be. Let's all continue to demand what we want, in a world where we're promised everything at our fingertips. The "everything" continues to consist of most crap we don't want.

*In case you're relatively new to this blog, by "New England" I mean "New England except for Fairfield County, Connecticut." That's where I lived for the first 30 years of my life. In New England, but outside New England Sports Network's broadcast area. It's the one county they don't reach, bullshittily. Fortunately I had Coleman and Castiglione. When the Baltimore station (5 hours away) wasn't interfering with the Hartford station (1 hour away), that is. It may really be true: The only way I'll ever get New England Sports Network is to move to New England. Oh, wait, I grew up in New England, and still didn't get it. F you, Steinbrenner. I know you're behind this. Speaking of that, Aaron Boone just happens to be making error after error against the Yanks tonight...

Typo? Negative.

Yanks could trade A-Rod to Cubs. Might be BS, but it's fun to think of A-Rod getting the boot.

Every time I hear "Taepodong-2" on the news, I think, "Is Peter Steele posing for Playgirl again?"


Okay, Peter Steele was (is?) the singer of goth/metal/whatever band Type O Negative. (You should at least know them from Beavis & Butt-head.) And in the nineties, he made headlines by posing nude for Playgirl magazine.

[some laughter, but still mostly crickets]

Type O dong II.

[minor laughter by anyone who's still reading]

And yes, I had to look up that Danzig-wannabe's name.

On Display

Insert joke about Indians bats and fireworks here. Shawn "Of the Dead" Chacon is my dad's "favorite" Yankee pitcher. And he's quickly becoming mine. Michael Kay pointed out his ERA over his previous four starts had been over ten. With today's 7 ER in 1.1 innings (incorrectly stated as 3.1 in an article, don't believe the hype), make that about a 13 ERA over his last five. Almost 7.00 for the year, which is a number you don't want to see out of one your starters.

The sound of the Grinning Savages' bats today actually made you feel sorry for the ball. It was like batting practice off Yankee pitching. Six homers, none of them cheap. Just fun. Remember what happened the last time Cleveland embarrassed the Yanks? I do: the Red Sox went on to win the World Series.

And Torre says he's looking for outfield help. You mean Melky Cabrera and [can't even think of name] haven't worked out for ya? Haha! Good luck with that.

Unfortunately, Mike Timlin would've fit into the Yanks' staff perfectly today. We should win Wednesday, unless we want to lose three in a row to the Rays. And that can't possibly happen, correct? But Toronto won, so the Yanks are now tied for second. Go Jays. For now.

About these works de fuego: My mom always wanted to see the Macy's fireworks in New York. Every year she'd say it. And every year the rest of the family would show no to negative interest. Last year, realizing I lived in New York, I invited her down, to finally fulfill her LLD. So my parents and I watched the 'works over the East River, which is actually a... eh, forget it. We sat somewhere in the 40s, under the FDR drive, and felt like each 'work was exploding inside our bodies, as actual ash rained down on us. I'm telling you this now because it's a lot cooler than this year's story, which is that Chan & I weren't really psyched for the display, despite an earlier idea to watch them from the Brooklyn Bridge. At the last minute, we walked over to Carl Schurz Park, about 40 blocks north of the closest firework-shootin' barge, and caught the show by looking down the river. The above pic shows the "Feelin' Groovy" Bridge, with explosions behind it.

I liked when the sky turned red. Very apocalyptic. And a huge day for stuff being launched into the air. North Korea's missiles, the Space Shuttle, Indians' homers, fireworks...

More redness. You'll notice these are all blurry. You got a problem with that?

This one's cool in its blurriness.

Just to the left of the man's head is a firework. Above his head is his brain spewing out upon his being shot. I kept telling Chan, "If you wanted to shoot someone and get away with it, what better time than at a fireworks display?" I'm surprised this doesn't happen more often. Actually, being that far from where they were being shot off, the sound was barely there, and we could talk to each other, which was cool.

I kept trying for the "kid on shoulders with fireworks in background" shot, and this is the best I could do. Click these to make biggly-wiggly, by the way.

Left: Roosevelt island. Bottom: People watching from Carl Schurz Park. Right: East side river-view apartment buildings full of people that could buy and sell me. Middle: Green fireworks behind Feelin' Groovy Bridge. Top: Earth's moon, Moon.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Indepen F'n Dent

Fifteen minutes ago I was pissed, as Gonzalez' line drive was caught by the pitcher to end the sixth, and at the same time, the Yanks were playin' their patented dickety dick dick dick ball, Damon reaching on an error, Jeter Jetering one under the first baseman's glove to start the game. (Yet Micheal Kay was acting like that wussed-out rally was done with some kind of skill or good play. Hmmmm.)

Now, Papi has tied our game, and Chacon has given up four runs, and the first inning isn't over yet.

Hey, Orsillo, stop saying "in tonight's game." It's a day game.

Papelbon, when doing an anti-violence commercial, think about not wearing camo.

Now, before I can get this post online, Aaron F'n Boone (who made the error earlier) kills the Indian rally and Schil gives up another gopher ball.

Pissed again.

Monday, July 03, 2006

The Thirdth Of July

Yes, of course I love that the Yanks have a guy named TJ on their team.

Hey, by the way, how's that "thousand runs" thing comin' along? I heard only one team scored less runs than ol' Mr. Dunbar in June. That's the rumor.

Oh Georgie Porgie!Sox got shutout by the Mets' best all-time prospect, Scott "Let me take you there" Kazmir, Kazmir, Kaaaaaz-mir! You gotta hand it to the kid, but not to the Mets, who've been screwing us ever since we swept them. It's Ducth Door action.

Now the Yanks are down three in the ninth, at Cleveland. Looks good, right? Yeah, except that the Native Americans have decided the best thing to do is put in that nine and a half-fingered monster, Bob "Can I make it any clearer that I'm still on Steinbrenner's payroll?" Wickman.

He's thrown about fifty balls in a row. The crowd is all --- oh Jesus, they botch a double play ball. But they still get one. Second and third, two outs. Come on, fatty. Rheesus Monkey Butter CupsYanks send up Reese to make Wick think about peanut butter cups. Newsflash: He's already thinking about peanut butter cups. 2-0. Now a pitch hits the ground, almost, but the guy calls it a strike. Now 2-2. Foul. I wonder if Wickman's trying to pull a Wohlers here. Give 'em the second best pitch til he hits it.

Wow. Wickman throws him out on a grounder to win it. Never have I been so sure a guy would throw it away. He almost did. Speaking of that, great play by Beckett on a double play tonight. Pitchers rarely make a perfect throw to second on those, but he did, and Gonzalez took it right in stride. Too bad we couldn't score for Josh.

But, 4 games up. Toronto's down 5-1 late, so they'll probably still be 5 back. I'm totally rooting for them to overtake Dunby and then put some space between them. It's a risk I'm willing to take.

This had me laughing hysterically at work. (You know, during an authorized break period.) I don't have sound on my computer there. So when I got home and watched it with sound, it wasn't as funny. So I recommend turning down your volume and enjoying.

Who Let This Total Bullshit Out?

I've never liked the idea of interleague play. My main reason: the leagues play by different rules. It seems to me like that would be the big obstacle for the pro-interleague play side in making their dream come true. But they got past it a decade ago, leaving me to complain about it every year, even when my team goes 16-2 against the other league.

It's the "natural rivalry" games that really piss me off. They obviously came up with the idea to generate revenue in the two-team areas. That leaves the rest of us with six extra games against a team we never cared about any more than any other team.

The Yanks get to play the Mets every year. I'm not going to talk (right now) about how it's unfair since the Yanks are usually better than the Mets. Or how the Yanks get to play six games each year that they're forced to be more pumped up for than the Red Sox get in a match-up with the Phillies. Tonight's complaint is:

The Yanks are in the Mets' heads. The teams know it. The fans know it. Anyone who lives in this city knows it. No matter what the records are, no matter who the players are, and no matter how hot or cold each team is going in, the Mets see the Yankees and turn into schoolboys playing against their heroes. Even this year, with the Mets having such a great record, I heard a host on the FAN talking about how the Mets would be happy to get two out of three in The Bronx. And he wasn't being facetious. He was a Mets fan being optimistic.

So, besides the natural high the Yanks get during a Mets series, what with the packed houses going crazy for the big rivalry (although on Friday night they seemed downright bored, especially after the rain delay), they also get almost a little break from their real schedule. A chance to gain back the momentum they may have previously lost.

Imagine if there was a team who the Red Sox just owned, who were in the Red Sox' shadow constantly, who didn't know whether to beat us or join us, who could have a great year until they see the red "B," at which point they turned to stone. And imagine if the league allowed us the chance to play them six times a year, an amount three or sometimes six greater than the number of times the rest of the division gets to play them--just for the sheer hell of it. It would be unfair for the other teams in our division, right? Well, that's what's going on.

So, talk amongst yourselves. If someone wants to do the research on the Yanks' record before as opposed to right after Mets' series, please do. I'm curious about this. One thing is for sure: the Yanks have beaten the Mets in their season series' almost every time, and I'll tell you what the effect's pissing me off! I know, I can keep the five bucks, mister. And I will.

Quick story about Mets/Yanks, just since this post appears to kind of make fun of the Mets, to even things out: During the 2000 World Series, Shea Stadium played the parody song "Who Let the Mets Out?" There was a shot of Derek Jeter, looking out at whatever ridiculous corresponding activity was going on on the field, with a look on his face that said, "This is the difference between them and us." According to Fox, that is. (They'll also say things like, "The Mets believe they can win, the Yanks know they can. Crap like that.) What no one had the guts to say was, "Derek, now you know what the rest of us think when we watch your grounds crew interrupt their own job to do the fucking "YMCA" dance during every game. So, remember, Mets fans, just because this is the way things are now, remember 2004 as a great example as to how the world can suddenly flip upside down. It can and will happen. One day I'll say, "Sweet, Yanks have to play the Mets this weekend." Apparently we're just not there yet.

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