I have watched a lot of television. I won’t say that I’m an expert on what makes good TV but, like porn, I know it when I see it. That probably helps explain why things just haven’t been the same since I finished Season 5 of The Wire.
Don’t get me wrong, there are still quality shows out there. AMC’s raft of dramas – Mad Men, Breaking Bad and The Walking Dead – underscore this point and during their best moments, I sometimes forget about the Wire-hole in my heart. But then I see this and it all comes rushing back again:
I think the only event that came close to invoking the same sentiments that the end of The Wire made me feel is when Curtis Granderson left the Tigers for the Yankees. Sure, I didn’t know Granderson personally but it was like I had just lost a friend. The only real difference is that although I’d still love to have Granderson back, it’s good The Wire ended when it did. There’s something to be said for leaving them wanting more.
I blame The Wire. After blowing through all five seasons in just a few short weeks a couple years ago, everything else just seemed like Jersey Shore: a bunch of self-obsessed lame-ohs screaming and yelling while adding nothing positive to the universe.
And then there was this…
Hate me ‘cuz I helped put some nasty images in your head, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
I just finished watching Season 5, the final season of The Wire. And as much as I’d love to write something about baseball right now, I don’t think it’s even possible. Sure, I could try to come up with some sort of analogy comparing the pennant chase with the myriad of chases interlaced into the fabric of this HBO series. Or I could compare the probable playoff teams to various characters in the show and pit them against each other in a fight to the death and thereby once again (correctly) tell you who will win the World Series.
Honestly, I’m just speechless right now. It’s not that the final episode was the best one I’ve ever seen because it wasn’t. But the series as a whole, well, there isn’t much that can compare to it. So, even though it’s Friday, even though I’ve been MIA and even though this is a blog about baseball and politics, that’s all I got. Except, doesn’t McNulty remind you a little bit of the Yankees……?
Happy Friday. And go watch The Wire.
Clearly established is the fact that perhaps nothing is what it seems these days. From Alex Rodriguez gallivanting around the Dominican streets with his cousin scoring steroid sauce because he was “young and stupid” to Larry Craig simply taking a timeout in an airport restroom because he needed to “relax”, we, as US Americans, would be doing ourselves and our country a great disservice by not postulating the underlying motives and behind-the-scenes shenanigans that make up our anti-apotheoses of leadership.
Guilty until proven innocent?
Why not? This is America after all. We do what we want, when we want (see Iraq, Guantanamo, “W” for more information).
Baseball, democracy, Erin Andrews being all hot and sexy… these are as astutely American as a Paris Hilton reality television show; so it should be no surprise when they eventually fall victim to our insatiable desire for dirt.
So why not celebrate the fecundity of our backpage headliners… bring them together, assemble a stellar nine to barnstorm the backwoods, villages and small towns of this great nation?
Well, I have thought about it and I am all for it and I am doing something about it, damnit.
Marion Barry — CF
At the top of the lineup we need speed; and who better to give us speed than a bonafide crackhead? Believe me, folks, Barry will get on base — perhaps even manage to free-base — all the while giving pitchers (and Washingtonians) nightmares better fit for an episode of The Wire.
Eliot Spitzer — 2B
He’s scrappy, he’s fast, he leaves his socks on. With a name like Spitzer (see Roberto Alomar), Eliot’s the guy I want at second base. As patient in the number two hole (wink, wink) as he was hypocritical during his gubernatorial reign, Eliot is a surefire shot taker whom I definitely want on my team because he knows where to buy all the hot chicks.
Kwame Kilpatrick — 1B
The bigger, the fatter, the sloppier the man, the better the first baseman. Well, at least that is how they do things in Detroit. And Kwame, though once a sharp dresser, now looks a bit haggard after those 99 days in jail. The fact is, defensively liable players often end up at first base. On the plus side, Kwame is a big target and he has the agile hands of a 14 year-old text messaging champion.
Bill Clinton — 3B
No one knows his way around third base better than Slick Willy. Besides, this position requires a bit of flash peppered with a sprig of charm… not to mention an oh-so-faint cheating character. Of course, there are doubts that Clinton could handle the duties of a clean-up man (refer to the stained blue dress) but if we know anything, we know that Bubba is always full of surprises.
John Edwards — SS
Protect a cheater with a cheater: enter John Edwards.
Rod Blagojevich — DH
Now here’s a guy who comes to play, pays to play, forces others to pay to play, whatever; he’s a player. Widely known as a bit of a primper, Blago manages to fill the flashy DH role better than most. His only drawback: if you take him out of the game he will continue to run his idiot mouth.
Roland Burris — RF
Admittedly, the only reason Roland has a spot on this squad is because he’s in tight with the DH; but by now we all know it didn’t take long for Burris to wield his own personal bat of corruption and make a stately name for himself. And let’s face it: Burris has quick feet, able to change his story faster than you can say Chicago Democratic Machine.
George Ryan — LF
Bringing up the rear of our team’s famed corrupt Illinois politician trifecta (CITP) is the always forlorn oft uninteresting George Ryan. He’s fat. He’s slow. He’s a left fielder. But the man knows how to sell contracts, licenses and leases on behalf of his team, so it’s always good to have a guy who can get things when you’re on the road half the season.
Dick Cheney — C
The scowling shot-caller. The calloused captain. The man who hides behind a mask. With the entire field in front of him and myriad opportunities to talk s*** behind people’s backs, it is quite evident that Cheney was born to catch. More fierce than a misguided, misled, mishandled bombardier, he’ll chat the opposing hitter up as much as possible, flashing his hunting rifle from time to time to gain a psychological edge. Arrrrggghhh.
Larry Craig — P
Bringing up the rear, ahem, Larry Craig is one of those subversive anomalies of the baseball-politico reality. Sure, he can pitch; but he can catch too, which makes him all the more valuable to a team going long and far down that dirt road called destiny.
Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.