Saturday, September 16, 2006

Ya, Keith

I was made aware of this excellent 9/11 piece by Keith Olberman at L-Girl's blog, We Move to You Can't Do That On Television-Land. So I found the YouTube version and slapped it up here. Check it out, it's about 9 minutes long.

The Fox Shits Out Its Mouth

We just beat the Yanks. Always good. One more and we avoid them clinching in front of us.

You know, if we win all four, we could be 4.5 out of the Wild Card.

Anyway, TJ as usual by McCarver and Fox. Horribly talking shit about Ortiz, saying that having more "voices" (gee, voters, sorry we have 20,000 less seats at fenway) chanting "MVP" means your guy has a better chance to get it. In other words, admitting that the system is unfair. At one point they even said that Jeter is the front-runner in the MVP race. Don't they know that if they spout lies as if they're truth, people will blindly believe it? I wonder how many voters went "oh crap, Jeter's the front-runner? I better change my vote, I wouldn't want to pick the wrong guy." I bet some actually did. It's a shame.

If Jeter wins this MVP, he and Kay will laugh at how Kay used his power to make him the MVP, by telling everyone that he is the MVP. If he wins, he may say stuff about how other people deserved it more, but he'll walk away laughing, because he's a sneaky little cheating jerk.

Oh and I liked how McCarver said, about Ortiz' comments, that Jeter "would never say anything like that." Like what, Tim, the things that Ortiz said in your mind?

Then they're all talking about what a bad reception Ortiz will get, and how Jeter will get his MVP chants. Thing was, there were still so many Sox fans there, none of this happened nearly to the extent they told us it was, despite that we could hear the truth with our own ears.

And they went on about the 52,000 people per game. Remember, folks: discounted tickets. Really discounted. Obscenely discounted.

If there's anything more hyped up in this world than the New York Yankees organization, I'd like to know what it is. What's to enjoy about rooting for that team? I continue to root for the worst for them every day.

McCarver did actually agree with me about Pap staying as closer. He even used my example of: Would you have made Rivera a starter after his first year of closing? Unlike me, though, he said "knowing what you do now..." Well, duh, Tim.

My Huskers are actually playing a good team early in the season, on national TV tonight. At USC. So I'll be switching back and forth betweeen that and the Sox.

Duct And Cover

Pedro, I love ya. But please stop crying. You're going to the playoffs. Everything will be fine. Let us do the crying, huh?

Friday, September 15, 2006

Coming Of Age

I've mentioned this before, but isn't it funny how different our experience at thirteen was from today's kids?

Today they've got the internet, the sex, the myspace, the sex, the iPod, the sex, the Blackberry, the sex, the Bluetooth, the sex, the wireless, the unprotected sex, the Paris Hilton, the sex, the cell phones, the sex, etc. Here's what it looks like:

In my day, it was more about wearing boxers as shorts (unironically), sweatpants in the winter, ridin' bikes, Wiffle Ball, and maybe setting a fire or two in the woods. As Pat said, "there weren't enough Panini Football sticker books in that Thirteen movie."

At left is what we looked like. Note the Red Sox hat, shirt, and boxers, as Jere plays tennis with Dad at the Ridgefield High School tennis courts, circa summer '89. The aforementioned Pat is behind the camera.

Red Sox at Yankees tonight. Does Jeter still have that streak? Or did it "slip their minds" again? It's horseshit right up until the end with that squad. I'm surprised with this fake Ortiz story, they didn't somehow connect him to steroids, since that's what they all want to believe anyway.

Just came across this great piece on Murray Chass. Nice job, Bosox West! Last weekend, I got to my parents' house, and my mom AND dad said to me, "Don't even look at the Murray Chass article." I didn't.

ALF Rankin' High On Rerun List

After eating North America's best type of food, Mexican, Chan and I headed over to the IFC Waverly to check out the new Al Franken movie. I like seeing movies that haven't opened in other cities yet. Don't you?

Franken himself was to be at the theater. I found that out yesterday and immediately bought tickets online. I've loved Franken since I saw him with that huge satellite dish strapped to his back on Weekend Update.

Thursday night, aka New York's Friday night, in the Village, late summer. Good stuff. We got there before anyone else, so we were the official spokespeople of the ticket holders' line. "What line is this?" "Ticket holders." "For what?" "Franken." "Nice." Over and over again. Chan read the Onion while I read it over his shoulder.

We went in to the intimate theater and sat in the middle-middle. Then the movie started, without previews. Boo-urns.

The title is Al Franken: God Spoke. That refers to a quick skit in which God tells Al what to call his last book. I would've come up with a better title myself. That's my only complaint.

The film follows Franken through the 2004 presidential election, and documents the launching of the Air America Radio Network. When I lived in CT, I listened to Al's show (formerly called The O'Franken Factor) on there, but I don't listen to much radio now that I don't regularly drive a car. But I loved the show. I used to talk about it here. He basically, as he said tonight, uses what right-wing hosts say against them.

There's lots of good anti-Fox News, anti-O'Reilly, anti-Coulter, and anti-Hannity stuff in this film. Great footage of Al at the Republican Convention, as well as him at a Newsweek Party, which was full of Republicans. I love he goes right at them, being personable with them, but not being afraid to call them out on their lies right to their faces.

It was also cool that they showed Al and the Air America crew right before the election, talking about how to go about gloating the next day after Kerry won.

Very funny movie. If you're a liberal like me, you're gonna like it. Unless you're Brian, who I believe doesn't like Franken. So, basically, if you like Al, you'll love this. If you're a liberal, you'll get a kick out of the anti-Republican stuff. If you're a conservative, you probably won't go, but all I can say is, if you do, you might get an idea of what Al's trying to accomplish, and what a great sense of humor he has. Seems like half the movie is him cracking up.

Oh, and there's also some classic SNL footage. Stuff that never made the "Best Of" shows. That dude had some great hair in the 70s.

As the closing credits rolled, Al came out for a Q & A. As we stood and clapped for him--lots of audience reaction during the movie, by the way, like booing every time Bush was shown. Love the NYC liberal crowd. If only the concert crowds here were that cool--he was standing there following credits up the screen with his hands like a schoolboy. We kept the ovation going as the lights went up. He took questions. We learned about a scene that was cut out due to the Connecticut Board of Something or Other not allowing it to be in the movie. Al debated Ann Coulter in Connecticut. Some of this was shown, but they had to cut out Ann saying she'd most want to be Joe McCarthy if she could be anyone in history. Besides him, she'd be FDR, so she could undo the New Deal. Franken came back by saying, "Well, then I guess I'd be Hitler. Then I would've taken away the holocaust. But kept the Volkswagen!" Then the moderator called Paul Wellstone--Al's good friend and fellow Minnesotan who died in a plane crash--inconsequential. So Al thinks the guy paid somebody to keep that out of the film, since Al rightfully got pissed.

Al also might run for office in Minnesota in '08, and some questions were about that. "Do you think people might not take you seriously?" "I hadn't thought of that...," Franken deadpanned. He also said "I'd be the only New York Jew from Minnesota in the race."

One dude asked if Al thought it would be better for Dems to have a strong showing but barely lose the November elections so the right will still be "held accountable" for the next two years. Al passionately explained how the sooner the Dems win, the better. If they get control of the House/Senate, that means subpoena power. He talked about how all these people with blood on their hands should have to face the proverbial music in Congress.

On our way out, Al was at the door, and he shook everyone's hand. That was cool. I totally just shook Al Franken's hand. Sweet. Wow, I just found out after I wrote that line that Franken will be on Conan in a few minutes. More Franken for me.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

So Very Tired

What just happened? I get an email from my mom saying she couldn't get to my blog without finding Google-cached pages. (That's quite impressive for my computer-not-that-literate mom. Nice job, mom!) I checked into it, and sure enough, a blank page had replaced my blog. I clicked on "page info" and it said something about "expiring" at 11:51. Whatever it was that unexpired started at 6:something. So I checked back after 11:51, and now it's back. ?.

Just watched Boston Sports Guy on Colbert. He said Boston people wish things were like they were before 2004. Yiggity yawn yawn yawn. This guy gets a column? (I hear he's callin' himself some other wacky name nowadays...) Tonight's "real" post conming soon. Oh, and the Sox won tonight, while I was out.


The baseball off-season is the QUIZ on-season here at ARSFIPT. The '04-'05 Quiz season was won by [never added it up] and the prize of [never came up with one] was [not] awarded to that person. The '05-'06 campaign, in which quizzes were named using the Greek alphabet, in honor of the fact that the hurricane season went throught the alphabet and then moved on to greek letters, was won by [again, never added up the results]. No prize was advertised or awarded. Also, the '05-'06 preseason was won by Nick Smith, the closest we've ever had here to a coherent, willing-to-debate-without -calling-me-stupid Yankee fan. Smith got pissed, though, after his claims that he was the best at quiz-answerin', when he found out it was only preseason. He never returned. These are all things you should know going into the '06-'07 Quiz Season. The scoring system is controlled by me. Maybe this year I'll actually keep track of the stats, and who knows, maybe a prize will be awarded. But don't hold your breath.

To warm you up for Quiz Season, here's an easy one for you:

Who was the only human being to appear on The Brady Bunch and hit for the cycle in the same year? (Note: It's not like anybody else did the two things in separate years...)

Wednesday, September 13, 2006


Red Sox two-hit by Ori...

Just forget it. Anyway, who was talking recently about the Wayne's World sketch where they talked about "an escorted or coerced zeppelin"? Well, I was going through a tape tonight from '93. It had the SNL Music a Go Go special. Wayne and Garth did a bunch of little skits throughout. Check it out:

Also, my girlfriend and I were talking three days ago about the "Cory Hotline," and this tape also contained that Simpsons episode.

I've discovered that more coincidences happen the more you remember and/or document. Either that or a lot of them happen to me for no reason.

Have I Got Something For Myself...

I was at my video archive (my parents' attic) this past weekend, and I grabbed a tape that had some Red Sox footage from '89. Remember how my mom recently brought up the "Rock Around the Clock" parody, "Red Sox Rock"? Well, that commercial was on that tape. It's funny, since, I remembered all those other songs they used to use, but it was my mom that remembered that one, and now I've got it for you to enjoy. I'd also wondered if these songs that were used as Red Sox themes were made by channel 38, or specifically by the Connecticut affiliate I used to get the games on. And this answers that question, at least for this particular song (although it's just a commercial, not the actual theme played before the game, which changed year to year--Obsession, Every Little Kiss, Industrial Disease, etc.): The jukebox says "WVIT Red Sox Rock." So that means channel 30 did indeed produce this commercial on their own. (Note: on jukebox, the "other" song is "Infield Twist." I'd like to get a bootleg of that one.)

I've also included the end of the previous inning, which includes the classic end of inning song, to which my dad would sing "Here we go Red Sox here we go," which fit in perfectly to the eight note "chorus." You'll see the late John Cerutti pitching to Luis Rivera. Then there's a little "The More You Know" segment. I wonder if that girl went onto fame in the science world. And then, a commercial for a certain product you may have heard of. Then it's "Red Sox Rock," then a news byte from Joanne Nesti, then back to the game, for a nice play by Esasky. Game is from 7/3/1989. One of the first SkyDome games. Announcers: Sean McDonough amd Bob Montgomery. Click beow:

Oh, and share in my Connecticonfusion as Sean McDonough brings up a question about MASH. While we were getting the newsbrief, WSBK-38 viewers were no doubt getting a preview of that night's MASH episode. We'd regularly hear about how "Hogan's Heroes" would follow the game, but it never would, because we were watching on the affiliate.

And that's Clemens talking to the cop, I mean mountie, in the bullpen, though Sean ignores him when mentioning who's in the 'pen.

In case you made the good decision to miss it, the Sox played last night, and won easily 6-1. And by that I mean they would've won 6-1 had Timlin not come in and made it 6-5, before someone other than him was called upon to close the door. It was funny seeing how Camden Yards was nearly empty, but the only people who were there were Sox fans.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Late Jere Wears The Late Crown: The 9/12 Rant

It's been a trend lately to act like the sports world doesn't matter as much as "real life." Talk show hosts and other sports media will refer to sports as "the toy department," as not to give the impression to listeners, viewers and readers that all these teams and players we incessantly scrutinize mean more than, say, earthquakes and terrorist attacks.

I'm not saying that sports are more important than life itself, but without entertainment, what kind of lives would we all be living? Why not call "the arts" or even education the "toy department"? These are all just things we humans do and pay attention to every day. That's what life is. It's what we do. Should we stop "doing stuff" because someone else ceases to be able to, or can now only do it with one arm, or without a roof over their head?

On the fifth anniversary of 9/11 this kind of talk came up a lot, as could be expected. And all I could think of is how all those people that died, no less tragically than the people--American troops and Iraqi civilians--being killed daily in the middle east by the way, enjoyed all these "distractions" every day of their lives. Aren't we disrespecting them by diminishing all the things they loved to do while they were here?

With me it comes down to the fact that we should care about our fellow creatures all the time. Not on a specific time and day when we're told to. It's kind of like how we should be charitable always, not just after a disaster, or when the guy is ringing the bell outside the supermarket.

This doesn't mean I don't think we should mark anniversaries, or that specific events should be ignored. Each tragedy, natural or otherwise, should be remembered and learned from. It also doesn't mean that I constantly go around helping old ladies cross the street and shelling out c-notes to homeless people. I'm sitting here writing on the internet when I could easily go outside, grab the first homeless guy I see, and say, "Come on in, Chan and I aren't using this Aerobed tonight."

But this "toy department" thing pisses me off. It's ridiculous for a person whose livelihood depends on the sports world to brush off sports like they don't matter. Aside from the fact that there are things to be learned from sports, or any other type of entertainment, these people would have no job if it weren't for sports and other people who enjoy sports. Their babies would starve without sports. So how are sports not important?

They feel the need to apologize for what they do. I think we know going in that just because you're some type of sports host or writer, it doesn't mean you don't care about the world around you. Look at all these blogs, for example. I've learned so many non-sports-related things about people from their sports blogs.

If you really don't care about anyone but yourself, if you saw planes crashing into buildings on TV and just kept flipping around, hoping to come across an old college basketball game on ESPN Classic, if you go ten blocks out of your way every day to throw rocks at pigeons, then by all means, apologize for being so heartless. But if your only crime is "doin' stuff"--sports, stamp collecting, whatever--you've got nothing to worry about. It's okay to live your life. People whose lives have been cut short would've loved to have that chance.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Fenway 9806

Red Sox hero Jim Rice before the game.

Remy with Rice and TC.

Another view that used to not exist.

It was Macy's Day at Fenway. Okay. I guess they brought out a big baseball balloon because people associate Macy's with oversized inflatable objects.

The Standells played in center field. I heard them announced and I was psyched. But hardly anyone clapped. Then they broke into DW and people figured it out. Why they were there for Macy's Day, I don't know.

Then Martha Reeves, who'd sang "Dancin' in the Streets" earlier, sang the National Anthem. More mystery. Until the next day, when we heard "Dancin' in the Streets" on a commercial. We knew exactly what was going on. Sure enough, that's Macy's new ad campaign song. That still doesn't explain the Standells...

The Pru from the walkway behind the 3rd base pavilion.

Now back up to the 1st base side. Manny at the plate. This was my first time on the 1st base side of the pavilion. I really liked this view. If the city was out over the Monster instead of over right field, this would be the best view in all of sports. According to me. Maybe I can Photoshop the view over right field over the Monster.

Ortiz up.

Papi pulls into second with a double.

Two dudes on the field in the last two games I've been to. This guy came out of the grandstand in the third-ish inning. At least wait til the eighth, dude!

Ortiz has just tripled. You can see Royals personnel heading out to center field to tend to the injured outfielder.

We've moved from standing room to seats at this point. My second time in the pavilion, and both times Larry Lucchino was walkin' around up there.

Wily Mo doin' what he does best! In fairness, he hit a key double on this at bat.

Tek rounding third on his homer.

Trup, under American flag. Orsillo a few windows to the right. Castig and Remy are hidden. But it was cool to turn around and look at the TV on the pavilion while they were showing Don and Rem and then turning back and watching them in real life from a weird side-angle.

Manny coming off the field.

The Royals, you know, shift to the other side, as Ortiz bats.

Finally, this Willem Dafoe-looking dude was up in the pavilion, with a Dafoette. We were convinced these were the adult children of Dafoe. But I looked it up, and he only has a son, Jack, who looks nothing like this guy.

I have this knack of sitting at events right in the spot where the most annoying person or people in the entire venue are. It was no different on this night. In front of us, a group of older hippie-ish men standing the whole time, trying to get us all to cheer. I'd appreciate the effort, except that their leader was so busy facing the rest of us, waving his arms wildly and attempting to start chants that no one in their right mind would have any interest in joining, that he missed half the pitches thrown. A guy like that is no friend of mine. He's looking at me accusingly, telling me I'm being too quiet. Meanwhile, I care enough about the game to watch each pitch. This reminded me of the time a dude in the grandstand was yelling across the alleyway to us, in the bleachers, what a bad crowd we were. I, sitting right at the edge of the bleachers, was getting the brunt of it. He kept screaming "worst bleachers ever," and doing mis-timed, solo "Let's Go Red Sox" chants. I always want to tell these people: "If I want to be told when to cheer, I'll go to Yankee Stadium!"

And behind us, it was the loud, drunk contingent. They must've sold out all the 20 dollar SRO, so the last drunken stragglers got the 25 dollar pavilion SRO. Besides them, to the left were the "let's talk really loud so everybody hears how witty we are" college crew. This dude acted like he knew everything, but then pointed out that he can't remember any notable Royals--in history--besides George Brett. (He added, "I think they had Rollie Fingers.") At another point, the last out of an inning was made, after our pitcher had given up a few runs. I, along with almost everybody else, clapped for the nice play, then stopped. Cool guy, though, in his semi-drunkenness, looked down and saw our pitcher leaving the mound, heard cheering, and said "You don't cheer him" right next to my ear, making me out to be some dumb fan, when it was really he who didn't realize we were all cheering the nice play, not the pitcher.

I looked around while the loudies were louding and the drunkies were drunking and the hippies were fake-cheering. I looked at all the other sections. People, sitting, focused on the game. Everywhere else. This luck I have is well-documented. People who go to an event with me know to expect it. I'm not saying you should go to a ballgame and sit quietly. But pick your spots! This isn't Manchester United against... Manchester... Divided. Hey, that means I have a theory. Those soccer fans aren't more into their teams then we baseball fans are, they just like to make it look like they care. Hell, soccer has even less action than baseball. It all makes sense. They couldn't be cheering for each meaningless pass. I think this theory holds water.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

More Than A Reliever To Me

Your "New Jersey: Only the Strong Survive" T-shirt isn't cool because 100,000 other people bought it at Urban Outfitters, too.

Papi hit his 48th today, and Tavarez had another good performance in his newfangled starting role. Apparently NESN is going the cable news network graphic route, as they're calling Papi's quest "Road to 51." 51 gets him the all-time Red Sox single-season HR record, and NESN is gonna milk it like a rat in a Mafia basement. I hope Papi gets that record more than anyone, but I hope when it happens, it's not called David Ortiz' CareerBuilder.Com 51st Home Run.

I just saw an ad for an HBO special called "Wait Til Next Year"--about the Chicago Cubs. Hey, that's not fair! We're the truly cursed team! I want those old days back! Note to Michael Kay: I'm kidding.

It's weird, though, how the attention just moves from one team to the next. Get ready, Cubs fans, the casual fans and people who listen to exactly what the media is telling them are all gonna get sick of your team, and even if they break their fake curse, no matter how lovable they are, these same people will find some reason to make fun of them. I won't. Go Cubs. Advice to any Cubs fans out there: When they win, people will tell you that you've turned into what you once despised, and other crap like that. Just know that they wrote those articles ahead of time, and will break them out to seem, I don't know, profound or something. Look, I can write it right now: "Cubs fans wished and wished for this with all their might, and now that they've got it, they don't know what to do with it. They've gained a trophy, but lost an identity..." Ooooooooh, deep! Remember, it's all bullshit, but they'll say it anyway. I don't need to tell you Cub fans to stick with your team, lose or win.

Wow, that's the most I've ever written about the Chicago Cubs. Why did the Cubs team card always have the individual pics as opposed to the group shot every other team had? Maybe that's where the curse really lies. Take a group shot, guys! Come together!

Monday night you'll get my Fenway shots from Friday night. Meantime, here's the teaser. A weird shot from when we approached our 1st Base Pavilion seats. Meaning standing room. Meaning seats, after a bunch of people left early, despite spending 90 dollars on them. TJ.

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