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So here I am in Florida. At last. As I mentioned, Tuesday was a bit of a shitshow, and by the time I finally reached my destination nearly 24 hours after I had left my apartment in NY, I felt very much like like Vince Vaughn in Wedding Crashers, when he comes downstairs and his buddy John is all sorts of bright eyed and bushy tailed, while Jeremy is still recovering from the psychological and physical torment he endured the night prior.

“I’m gonna choose not to eat with you.”

I apologize for the lack of posts as of late. It’s been kind of looney tunes for the past week or so. A lot going on on all fronts. And a lot going on for the forseeable future. Any day now I’ll actually make it to Spring Training (“baseball camp”). Then when I come back, IT’S MY BIRTHDAY!

And the following week? I finally get to see my long-distance bf once again. Despite the distance that’s been between us, despite the fact that maybe we’re not technically “together” per se right now—at the risk of sounding cheesy—he’ll be back and we can pick up where we left off.

What, that’s normal. Lent was tough.

I head to North Carolina (on purpose, not like this accidental shitshow in the Charlotte airport) 2nd week in April to see my absolute favorite person who isn’t family.

Third weekend in April, the 4 Best Friends That Anyone Ever Had regroup to take in the first Yankee weekend homestand.

As such, it’s going to be a challenge to get the recaps up, but the good thing about being so obsessively compulsive about getting them done, is that if I were ever kidnapped I feel like the presence of lack thereof, of recap posting would alert my family to the fact there was foul play involved. (I have been watching WAY too many episodes of 48 Hours: Hard Evidence.)

During my 10 hours in Charlotte, I wrote quite a bit about both my seething rage about my flight situation, and also a number of baseball things I saw in bits and pieces (or “snapples,” as my mom calls it). I finally got a USB flash drive yesterday (as well as a SPELLUNKING HEAD LIGHT! Dear Diary, Jackpot. Love, CYC) God, it’s so awesome, I can’t wait to wear it out. (I’m really building quite the armamentarium of devices to facilitate night-vision.)

A few things about Charlotte:

1.) For some reason, this airport has about 290,102,234 little golf carts but zero Wifi access. You got that? The whole airport’s got the flu!

2.) I’m heading over to wait for my connecting flight to Florida, and before I could even settle into a seat with my Nathan’s cheeseburger and start leisurely catching up on my Yankee blogging in the hours before boarding, Boston clowns start filing into Gate C11 like a bunch of locust descending upon the earth, and sounding just as cacophonous. “Flight 1141 to West Palm Beach will now be boarding at D1. Flight 2247 to Boston will board here.”

a. I don’t think I have to outline the completely irrational contempt I felt for this minor (at worst) inconvenience, solely because of the destination city behind it.

b. This provides further proof that Boston is just a horrible, horrible harbinger of suck. Nothing from that city will ever be even close to okay enough, to ever even hint at compensating for the rest of the douche-evils (pronounced doo-SHEE-vuls) that are perennially spawned from that town.

i. I have a perfect clip that I want to hyperlink to right now, but…up! There’s no internet service here. How is this even possible? It’s like on par with seeing someone with a Walkman. And this is coming from someone who raged against the dying of the mix tape/nondigital camera/VHS well past college graduation.

And now a few things about baseball:

1.) A-Rod is following his spring training rubric of becoming as mired in controversy as possible. I need more information on this story…but from what I’m read, I’m more than convinced he’s clean. (I know, shocking. Psychotic fan sides with Yankee based on little to know background knowledge on the subject.) HOWEVAH, I did follow with much pointed interest, the whole steroids mess that sprouted last year, and I devote more than a normal amount of interest and attention to the study of lie detection.

A-Rod doesn’t look or sound guilty here. I WILL say that the fact he diverted from the team doctor to go to his own is pretty shady. But I don’t know. Maybe it’s sort of like how this year I decided to do my taxes myself instead of having my dad the CPA do it. I paid the $50 TurboTax fee and probably got less of a refund when I could have just had my dad do it for free and do more creative and fruitful things with the numbers.

I have no good reason for this, beyond stupid ones. I wanted to do it myself. I wanted to have control over it. I wanted to take care of it more quickly. I didn’t want a third degree about what I was spending my money on. Maybe A-Rod didn’t want the team doctor to know he wasn’t doing all his required hip rehab exercises. I can relate to that. Those PT appointments can be a bitch.

2.) Joe Nathan has Mets written all over him. The last time he pitched a real game, he handed over the ALDS to the Yankees, in the last game in the Metrodome ever. Now he’s looking at potentially season-ending surgery.

3.) Aceves and Mitre are the only 2 Yankee pitchers who haven’t relinquished any runs so far. It’s interesting, because last year, in a random run-in with David Cone, he argued that Aceves should be their starter, not Hughes. (I agreed with that, but not on his contention that Joba is a starter.) Joba is getting worse and worse this spring training. And here’s the thing, I KNOW that this is spring training, I know there’s nothing to be gained from relying on your bread and butter pitches. It’s all practice, time to work out the kinks.

It’s like when I’m practicing the piano, and I’d much rather just play through a song I know cold, backwards and forwards, because, well, it just sounds better, it’s easier, and I know I’m not pissing off any of my neighbors. Conversely, if I want to really want to learn a song and learn it the right way, I gotta isolate the problem areas and just play them over and over and over til I get it. Phil Hughes gets this concept.

He’s a good teammate. He does what he’s told. He does it with his all. And now, when he throws a bad pitch or lets up a ding, it’s more than likely it’s off a changeup. I’m okay with that. Who cares if the neighbors aren’t impressed? Once you nail that big run of chords in the end of the Requiem for a Dream theme, they’ll forget about all the nights you kept them up banging out dissonant notes for hours.

4.) Nomar Garciaparra signs with the Red Sox for one day so he can finish his career in Boston. I’ll never understand people. Everyone is nuts.

On a final note, I will say that while stuck in the airport bar in Charlotte, I immediately started getting the trash-talking from the middle aged man next me.
“Oooh Yankees fan huh? Well I’m a Cubs fan and my brother’s a Braves fan.”
“I’m sorry.”
“Well, the NL is…well, you know. The NL.”
“EXCCCUUUSSSSE ME. Um, who won the world series last year? Yeah, how about that?”

To his credit, I was, left a bit speechless. How do you respond to that? If I say the Yankees, it’s almost as if I’m dunking on a 3-year old in a pick up basketball game. Southerners are sneaky indeed.

Coming up (in, like, 3 hours)… my pilgrimage to “Tradition Field”….


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