November 6, 2002

Getting a Few Things off my Chest

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While watching the World Series a couple of weeks ago, I thought to myself, “damn, there are a lot of things in sports that drive me crazy.” So many things, in fact, that I felt the need to write a column about them. Even though as you read this today, nine days have passed since the last out of the baseball season, and 12 days have passed since I first started to rant to myself and (regrettably) those around me. So now, it’s your turn, dear reader, to hear the ruminations that have overrun my mind over the past week.

I think I’m in the majority in saying that, by far, the most annoying part of baseball’s postseason was those terrible Thunder Stix. Yup, those plastic blow-up items that are struck together to make noise. Or, in the case of one fan, to beat Reggie Sanders over the head while he was trying to field a ball during the World Series. If that isn’t reason enough to immediately ban these terrible objects, I don’t know what is. But then again, baseball commissioner Bud Selig wouldn’t know common sense if it hit him in the head, excuse the pun.

I also feel that I’m in the majority in stating that the best part of this year’s World Series was the absence of “aura and mystique”, also known as the New York Yankees. Perhaps even better than that is the absence of Yankee fans, who possess ceaseless arrogance and haughtiness. But something strikes me as odd. I know many, many baseball fans, a lot who just so happen to root for the Yankees. And many of those same fans just so happened to not watch the World Series this year. Interesting. You’d never see a football fan miss the9/10er Bowl, no matter who is playing.

Oh, but alas, the paradox that is a Yankee fan seems to stem from the object of his affection. Did you see that the Yankees have laid off about 25 clerical workers and raised 2003 ticket prices, due to the “unfair labor agreement?” Well, that’s a load of crap. If the collective bargaining agreement puts that much of a burden on the Yankees, why don’t they just do what every other team in baseball will do — CUT UNNECESSARY PAYROLL. I’m looking at you, Mr. Mondesi and Mr. White.

But enough about baseball. Last week, the NBA tipped off its new season. And even before the season started, the league got to deal with some Shaq-sized controversy. It seems that Mr. O’Neal’s teammate, the eminent Rick Fox, felt the need to finish what he started with the Kings