Monday, February 27, 2006

The Anti-O

Very encouraging article in Sunday's Daily News, featuring Jose Reyes' willingness to speak English, his second language, in a media setting.

If you're looking for another reason to be excited about the future, read the article. Realize how difficult it is for somebody who doesn't speak English to not only learn the language, but speak it in public for the whole city to hear. Put yourself in Reyes' shoes for a second, and I'm not talking about getting one of those CD ROM's that teaches you how to say "Donde esta el bano?" I'm talking about learning another language well enough to not have to worry about having every syllable and every twist of the dialect and every hint of an accent judged by an entire population. Realize how scary it is for a latin player to pull that off. Notice how Reyes has not only pulled it off, but has done so with a smile as wide as a Mike Vanderjagt field goal attempt.

And then think back to Rey Ordonez learning the language, yet conveniently throwing out a "no hablo Ingles" after bad games (and most good ones). Legend has it at the end of a particularly brutal season, a reporter saw Ordonez leaving the stadium and asked him when he was going to learn to speak English, and Ordonez replied "maybe next season".

Then mastering the language in time to call Met fans stupid.

Now click your heels three times and tell yourself that there's no time like the present. Put the Rey-O days behind you and continue to make Jose Reyes one of your favorites.

***
"I can't use the word hate because it's too strong a word...but think of the greatest rivalries in sports. It's a little bit above that, and just short of hate." -Sweden forward Daniel Alfredsson, on the Sweden/Finland hockey rivalry.
Don't get me wrong, I'm pleased as punch that Ranger goalie Henrik Lundqvist is a gold medal winner as Sweden beat Finland this morning on the strength of Lundqvist's goaltending, 3-2. But there's a part of me that feels a little bit for Finland, who is that matchups version of the New York Mets while Sweden would the rivalry's version of the Yankees. Little brother trying to knock off big brother.

Sure, Finland has beaten Sweden in big spots before, the 1995 World Championships, and the 1998 Olympic quarters. Just like the Mets having beat the Yankees before in key regular season games and Mayor's Trophy games (that's right I brought up the Mayor's Trophy games...and I typed those words with a straight face thank you very much). But you don't get many chances to beat your "big brother" in an Olympic gold medal game...just like you don't get a lot of chances to beat the more successful franchise in your city in a World Series, as we all know. And now, Finland hockey fans will have to live with the scarlet letter of losing to big brother on a stage as grand as it gets for at least four years.

"And then you look down and you see Sweden celebrating the gold. It's hockey, it's sports, but it sucks." -Finn forward Saku Koivu
Don't I know it Saku...don't I know it.

7 comments:

Kate said...

Metstra -

Speaking of heartwarming articles, did you see the Newsday one from this weekend talking about Wright and Reyes' friendship?

Favourite part: Reyes sings to Wright when they're in the field to "make sure he's still there" or something like that.

What do you think he sings?

Bronx Bombers4life said...

Mutt$ should sing 'YMCA" to each other in the shower.

hahaha. Pathetic Mutt$!

Yankees will win 120 games this year and a world CHompionship!!

AROD is the best player ever!

iamSINATRA said...

Metstradamus:

It looks like the Mensa Squad is back. These Yankee fans kill me. It must have been a long, hard struggle for all of them to be fans since way back when in 1996.

Remember that I am fairly new here...so I have a really dumb question:

Do Yankee fans still post here after their annual October chokes?

mr. met said...

And then think back to Rey Ordonez learning the language, yet conveniently throwing out a "no hablo Ingles" after bad games (and most good ones).

Or Sammy forgetting he spoke english for years when he was in front of congress.

Anonymous said...

While Ordonez sounds like an idiot here, he isn't completely wrong. Mets fans always boo. It's embarrassing to be a Mets fan at Shea and listen to the guy behind me, who doesn't know much about the GAME (or played it for that matter) boo a player who may not be hitting good but is still playing hard and not dogging it (e.g. Beltran, Matsui).

Metstradamus said...

Kate,

My sources tell me that Jose has a "David Wright Mix" in his iPod of songs he sings to him. I can confirm that one of the songs is Barry Manilow's "Can't Smile Without You".

DaBeach,

These Yankee trolls are a fairly new phenomenon to this here blog. And while in general, I will choose to ignore any posts claiming that the Yankees will win a World Chompionship, I am thinking of instituting a filter, where a Yankee fan will have to identify the shortstop who preceded Derek Jeter to be able to post here (that would replace the word verification for them).

Mr. Met: Tru Dat.

Anonymous,

I have to disagree with you. Rey Ordonez may not have been an outward dog in the Rickey Henderson manner, but Rey-O showed no initiative to make himself better. Ordonez was what we call a "minimalist", punches in, does what he has to do, punches out. Ordonez became a worse hitter instead of a better one, and looked foolish in the process. While nobody expected Ordonez to be a .300 hitter (he actually hit .254 in his last season with the Mets), certainly more effort was expected of him in the field near the end. He was a grade A sourpuss, and probably was so on purpose so he could escape New York. If you're going bad, you have to expect boos...warranted or not. It's the way you respond to them that make or break you. Ordonez chose to throw Met fans under a bus...and for that, he loses the benefit of the doubt.

JeterBoy said...

A bit sappy but that kind of chemistry leads to success. The Yankees had that in their last championship run.

The Mets wasted a lot of money on Ordonez and many other players over the last five years. We'll see if Omar's spending spree changes the result this year. Expectations and the pressure that come along with high payroll are not familiar territory in Flushing.