Everybody knows that baseball is a team sport — a team
sport where success hinges on the individual’s performance. If you
don’t believe me, just ask Walter Johnson… or Ernie Banks… or
Willie Mays Hayes.
Likewise, RSBS wouldn’t be RSBS without the BS —
*ahem* — as in “Blue State”, represented in high definition by our
very own misanthropic Tiger fan, Mr. Allen Krause. Yesterday, Mr.
Krause (who also happens to be one of my best friends in all the world)
adequately summed up 2009 as only RSBS can; and while he was at it, he kindly featured some of my better pieces from the year.
Well, dear readers, what fun is life without reciprocation?
no better way to wrap up the decade than to highlight my friend’s best
work… so let us take a gander at some real Krausian masterpieces!
2nd Honorable Mention:
Being There (Part 1 & Part 2)
Historic, epic, monumental… I like to believe that most people were
able to set their political affiliations aside while our nation’s grip
on racism slipped. There will only be one first non-white
presidential inauguration and Allen Krause was there. He lent us his
senses. He gave us some play-by-play. Then he rejoiced that the
“unwashed hordes” were finally leaving his city. Bravo!
Nietzsche Was Right
Pessimistic as he may be, Mr. Krause still knows how to hit a homerun.
This has never been more evident than in his simple line:
“you should all know that god is dead and the devil has won.”
Referencing the Ghostbusters alongside Colbert and Nietzsche
was just icing on the existentialist cake.
2nd Runner Up:
A-Rod at the Plate
If you ever feel like pissing Allen off, mention any one of these
things with high praise: Notre Dame, Glenn Beck, the Yankees, Bud
Selig… but if you really want to get him in a tizz, you should talk
up Alex Rodriguez. Still, unlike most folks, Al has a savvy way of
chiding fallen poster-boys. This parody of Casey at the Bat is, in a
1st Runner Up:
RSBS Presents: Your Health
Hi-effing-larious. Dude. Seriously.
And the number one Allen Krause penned piece of the year is…
A Magical Mystery Tour (Part 1 & Part 2)
This sultry trip through PED-opolis, Politicotopia and Pujols-ville may
have been a sneaky way of insulting my obsessions and undermining my
sexual orientation (Jesus Christ, I’m not GAY! I like chicks! YOU
UNDERSTAND?!?!)… but the idea of there even being a
Pujols-ville where Albert hangs out in a kiddie pool full of tapioca is
oddly titillating enough to make this my favorite (albeit two-parted)
post of the year. I hope that doesn’t make me a sicko.
And with that, my good pal Al and I would like to thank you, dear
readers, for making 2009 a fantastic experience. This community is all
about like-minded baseball lovers; and it wouldn’t be any fun with out
the tethered creativity of Princes, She-Fans, Ranters, Deconstructors,
Phanatics, Renegades and everyone else in between.
Much success to all of us in 2010!
Now, go get drunk!
**Please drink responsibly… y’know… don’t drive drunk… or kill anyone… or I’ll kick your ^ss**
Until 1978 Kool-Aid was synonymous with children and summer. No matter what chemically produced flavor it came in, the refreshing blend of water, sugar and artificial colors and flavors was sure to quench any thirst. Then, along came Jonestown and ruined it forever. Now Kool-Aid brings to mind cyanide laced beverages or the willing ingesting of something one knows or perceives to be wrong.
Sounds kind of like baseball.
Baseball used to mean transistor radios in the summer and guys hitting one out of the park for some sick kid. But then came the ’81 strike, the ’94 strike and the steroid scandals. Instead of cheering on their team, fans started to wonder what the players would ask for next, what the owners would do to screw the fans and players over and when the other shoe would drop and you’d find out that you’re favorite player had been getting ahead by using a little something extra.
Maybe that’s all behind us now, though. We seem to have hit a point where the Mitchell Report has played itself out. We know about the transgressions of A-Rod and all the other juicers and the fans seem to have moved on. The fans still get gouged but the stadiums are full. And even if teams like the Yankees, Red Sox and Phillies buy up all the available talent, there are still surprises every other year or so.
Yep, maybe baseball really has turned the corner. Or maybe I just drank the Kool-Aid.
Image from Skull Swap
Kids have it hard these days. I grew up in cable’s infancy, a time when phones were still attached to the walls. It took a little while for news to spread. And it was a more innocent time, too. Heroes were put up on a pedestal to be worshiped, not to have stones thrown at them. Today, though? Man, it must be rough to be a kid or a hero.
Take Tiger Woods (please!). As if the multiple sordid affairs weren’t enough, he’s now being dragged into the PED arena as well with the news about his doctor using HGH. And as soon as any news about him hits the streets, it’s spread far and wide by the internet. Let’s be honest, it’s entirely possible that Jack Nicklaus had a stable of pretty young fillies at his beck and call during his hey-day but you never would have heard about it. Stars were protected back then.
The real problem is that we can’t seem to find a happy medium. Either we don’t know anything (why haven’t I seen a Joe Dimaggio/Marilyn Monroe honeymoon video?) or we know way too much (the image of a syringe in Roger Clemens’ @$$ is something I’ll never be able to forget). Why can’t we just know a reasonable amount? Like, if someone is a danger to himself or society (Ray Lewis, I’m looking at you), let us know. But if they’re just doing some canoodling on the side, that’s his or her business (yes A-Rod, I’m giving you a pass on that one).
Information is power and that hasn’t changed. And there is plenty of information on every possible subject out there today. But trying to find the useful stuff is like diving into a latrine to find the quarter you accidentally swallowed and then excreted. It’s messy and ultimately just not worth it. Kind of like being a hero.
In 2005, the St. Louis Cardinals called up a 27 year-old lifetime minor leauger to get his first hacks at the big league level. That man’s name was John Rodriguez.
Don’t remember him? No worries. Most people don’t.
Mr. Rodriguez came on pretty strong during his brief glimpse of the Majors, hitting .295 with 5 HRs and 24 RBI in 149 at-bats. The folks in St. Louis liked him and his cinderella story so much that someone decided to grace Mr. Rodriguez with the nickname: J-Rod (a la A-Rod, K-Rod, YourMom-Rod, et al).
J-Rod *ahem* wasn’t a fan of the name. Why? Maybe because he wasn’t A-Rod! To be honest, he wasn’t anywhere close to being an A-Rod type player. His greatest downfall was was being born with the same easily nicknameable name as poster boy Alex while also having a first initial that contained just one syllable (you see, W-Rod would never work).
Flash forward to December 7th, 2009 and my trusty misanthrope of a colleague, Mr. Allen Krause, deigns us with the phonetically challenged nickname “Pla-Po” for his beloved (and now long gone from Detroit) Placido Polanco.
Pla-Po? Are you kidding me? How is that even pronounced? PLAY-Poh? Plah-POH? Ah, forget it; all I know is that it sucks.
So, please know, Mr. Krause, that from now on we are calling for a complete ban on poorly constructed nicknames, specifically on those you created. For those of you dear readers unaware, the following Krausian nicknames shall no longer be used, under any circumstances, lest you wish the worst on the baseball-politico community:
- Matt Holliday — Ma-Ho
- Barack & Michelle Obama — Bachelle
- Albert Pujols — A-Jols (read “A-Holes”)
- Dick Cheney — Dick-Chin
- Pablo Sandoval — P-Sand
- Harry Reid & Nancy Pelosi — Harry Nancy
- Carlisle Littlejohn — C-Lit
- Michael Cuddyer — Mi-Cudd
- Ann Coulter — ‘Lil Beotch (it should be “Big Beotch”)
- Kevin Youkilis — K.Y. Kill-Us
And of course, let us not forget to mention the ongoing ban against one of the crappiest nicknames of all time, also penned by Mr. Krause, for his dilapidated Mo-Town Tigers team:
‘Cuz unless finishing the AL Central in second place qualifies you as a ‘winner’, then this just needs to stop.
Hate me ‘cuz I’m brash, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
A-Rod finally has his ring and the Yankee faithful are overjoyed.
However, do you think there’s any chance that this will make him less
of a dill-hole? This is a guy who has dumped his wife, dated Madonna,
admitted to being a big fat liar and had somewhat major surgery in the
span of about one year. Does one ring atone for that?
Okay, that’s a lie. My mom doesn’t know what a dill-hole is (perhaps neither do I), but it doesn’t matter because it’s true.
Let us remember that.
But let us also remember that in professional sports, just as in politics, the most important question when evaluating merit will always be the same: What have you done for me, lately?
In Alex Rodriguez’s case, does it really matter that 9 months ago all we were talking about was his wayward romp in the world of performance enhancing drugs? Does anyone remember that he flat-out lied to the press? That he stained the game? That he forced difficult discussions between parents and their children about the dangers of illegal substances and cheating the most sacred of US America‘s games?
No. Of course not. He led them to a World Series crown. If Charles Manson hit .378 with 6 HR and 18 RBI during the playoffs, he too would be lifted up on the city’s shoulders, carted off to the tune of “27th Heaven” just like A-Rod was.
Because that is how the world works.
I don’t think ethnic Albanians in Kosovo really put too much thought into President Bill Clinton’s oval office sexual exploits when they erected their tributary bronze statue of him in Pristina recently. He ended their persecution, man! He knocked Serb forces out of the game by hitting in the clutch, with proverbial runners in scoring position!
Likewise, Ronald Reagan ended the Cold War! Nevermind all the money and resources he threw at guerrilla specialists in Afghanistan (*ahem, Osam bin Laden, et al*) to fight the evil Soviet regime! HE ENDED THE GODDAMN COLD WAR, MAN!
And let’s face it, folks: cold wars suck. I think we can all agree on that. To Yankees fans, an eight year absence from holding the highest position in the baseball cosmos had to feel a lot like a cold war, and like my mama always said: “character doesn’t mean s*** in love and war.”
Okay, that’s a lie. She never said that. But she might. She’s got opinions.
Just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
As is customary at RSBS, the Filibuster will be put on hiatus until pitchers and catchers report. Very special thanks to all our dear readers who’ve bombarded us with Filibuster topics this season! We’ll ask for them again in February! Until then, please enjoy RSBS‘ continuing pursuit of the ironically fantastic and creatively eclectic. You’ll be in for some real treats! I’d almost bet my life on it!
Relax. Breathe easy. Enjoy this, fellow Yankee haters: Cliff Lee and the Phillies have given us another precious day of hearing “twenty-six rings” over the inevitable “twenty-seven”. And remember, God made a “firmament” in just one day. Think of what we can do with ours!
Because let’s face it, whether it happens on Wednesday or it happens next year, the year after that or whenever (it’s gonna happen in your lifetime), the Yankees are going to get their twenty-seventh ring. That’s fine. I’m okay with that. The franchise more than deserves it. You see, if you spend a billion dollars on something, it will work. Ask our government. And if I spent a billion dollars on something in just 9 years I’d expect that something to at least win me a trophy of some kind, or get a bill named after me, or land me a free room at Holiday Inn Express (they still make me pay there).
The point is: the Yankees will win… sometime… eventually…
Until then, A-Rod, Party Boy, Mo and Tex… you will have to wait patiently for this hater (me) to shower you with praise.
Speaking of people who want to shower me, I believe Mr. Krause lost the World Series of Metaphors and owes the winner (also known as Me) a meritorious essay on the topic of why I am awesome.
Hate me ‘cuz I flash a flair of fetidness, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
In an effort to avoid any bias in reporting the results of the recently completed World Series of Metaphors, RSBS decided to ask an impartial third party to announce the results of the contest and authors of the metaphors. Unfortunately, it was kind of short notice and the only person willing to help out was our old friend, Max. So, despite our better judgment, here goes.
Populism can eat my @$$. For that matter, so can democracy. You know what happens when you let democracy and populism run amok? Sarah Palin and Barack Obama. Speaking of which, you know what both of them can do? I’ll give you a hint: It has already been mentioned in this paragraph.
You know what else happens when democracy and populism run amok? Worthless excuses for contests like the one that happened right here on this blog. Look at those metaphors. At least there was an attempt to keep it a little highbrow with the biblical references and I thank Allen for that. But Jeff went straight for the gutter. Way too embarrassed to tell your friends about Ryan Howard? That doesn’t even make sense. He might be a fat girl but he’s popular. Wouldn’t that put him more in the Jennifer Hudson vein? I’d expect Jeff to make that connection anyway considering his practically pederastic love for underage Filipinas and everything else that American Idol entails. Way to play to the lowest common denominator there buddy.
As it stands, Jeff won the contest. Jayson Werth as the dirty uncle and this whole A-Rod as a pretty girl business won it for him. But really, doesn’t that just mean that we all lose? And just to be fair, I’m more than a little disappointed with Allen for sinking to the same level with his self comparison to Yankee fans. Did you forget that you hate the Yankees, pal? And as if that wasn’t bad enough, you still lost and now you have to write an essay praising Jeff. Well played, Judas. Hope you remembered to pick up your thirty pieces of silver on the way out.
Frankly, I’m not even sure what I’m doing here right now. I consider Jeff and Allen great friends but intellectual minnows, a point they proved impressively well with this “metaphor-off” or whatever poorly disguised euphemism they might have used for their h0mo-erotic excuse for a blog. I need to get home anyway. Populism and democracy are coming by in a little while to attend to some business.
-Maxwell “Max” P. Framington