Thursday, August 10, 2006

Conditional Love

Sorry, Mike.

You're family and all. But you were pushing it.

And really, you should be proud of yourself. After all, you avoided a chorus of boos longer than anyone thought you would.

See, even though it was day two of your return, there were still many of us who didn't get to say thanks last night who were present included. So there we were, greeted by your merchandise being front and center at the train stop (I myself dusted off my old PIAZZA 31 with the still unitentified mustard type stains for tonight's very special occasion). And we cheered for you.

You went deep off Pedro to close your deficit to 4-1. We cheered...wildly. And despite how we feel about Pedro (you know how we feel about Pedro), we gave you a curtain call even though you wear sand. That's no small feat for a visitor to get a curtain call, but you're not really a visitor.

Then you went deep again. Now I know you heard some cat calls after that one...the one that made it 4-2...but they were scattered and good natured. I for one, barely heard them. At least where I was, we cheered again. Chanted your name, even. You could have taken a second curtain call and nobody would have been worse off for it.

But you were pushing it.

You were pushing it to the point that when it got to the eighth inning, and you were in the position to really hurt us with two men on and a two run deficit, you put us in the position to have to make a decision. We wanted to keep our shove in check, but your two home runs brought push to it. So in the eighth inning, we shoved.

"Now batting...the catcher...Mike Piazza."

(awkward pause...)

Our love has conditions.

It's nice when family comes back to visit. But you got too comfortable. You wanted it to be like home again...hitting two homers and coming about five feet from a third home run. But you don't live here anymore. We didn't want to have to remind you, but you left us no choice.

One day, you'll be able to come back and be as comfortable as you wish...and we can all look back and laugh about this. But right now, we can't just stand by and watch you go all 2000 on us. (And as it turned out, you went 2000 on us hit one that everyone thought was out but fell into the center fielder's glove. That sure as hell reminded me of 2000. Thanks for the memories.) So we had to boo.

But we did take great care to cheer for you again after the out (unlike 2000).

Hope you understand.


Tonight was DHL lanyard night. It was a yellow lanyard, generally worn around one's neck, with the MLB logo all over it attached to a plastic sleeve that is usually used to hold a media or employee credential.

I have to say it's the lamest giveaway I've ever been a part of. And here's why: Every time I saw someone wearing a bright yellow laniard with a plastic sleeve attached (because what pocket is that thing going to fit almost have to wear it), I think he or she is a Shea Stadium employee.

What if I had to ask someone where guest relations was?

I would have ran around asking 49,000 people how to get to guest relations before I found a real employee!

If this had been a real emergency, there would have been mass chaos! I don't think you would want that on your conscience. Can I get an amen from the bobbleheads on that?


Speaking of the fan experience, a fan got a $60 gift certificate to a steakhouse because he was able to come up with the movie where the following quote came from:

"May the force be with you."
And it was a multiple choice question!

Can he at least earn it, please?

(If it was me, I probably would have gotten "Name That Shakespeare Sonnet" or something similarly difficult and useless for the chance to win a pocket schedule.)

You couldn't have offered up a bigger meatball if Shingo Takatsu came in to pitch.


And the Kiss Cam must die.

A man and woman got booed...mightily...for giving each other a cheek to cheek kiss after they were caught on "kiss cam". For those of you who booed, let me as you a simple question:

What if they were actually brother and sister?

Would you have wanted to see incest on the Diamond Vision?


Oh you're all sick!


Jaap said...

What the hell is a laniard?

Kiss cam?

Mets fans cheering the opponent after a homer off Pedro?

What in the name of Lenny Dykstra is going on at Shea?!

Metstradamus said...


A laniard is something you wear around your neck that is usually attached to a plastic sleeve for the purpose of displaying a credential.

(And actually, I spelled it wrong. It's "lanyard". This should help:

Anonymous said...

Aren't lanyards those freakin things we used to make at camp when we were kids? You know, on the days when it rained, so we couldn't play dodgeball or kickball, so we did arts & crafts (which we called Arts & Farts)?

Box stitch, butterfly stitch?

I'm with Jaap: What in the name of Lenny Dykstra is going on at Shea?!

Anonymous said...

One of the games at RFK this weekend is Screech Bobblebelly giveaway. If only we still had Mo Vaughn (dot org?).

Anonymous said...

Yeah, I agree with Metstradamus about that brother and sister thing. My sister and I get along really well and are always talking during the games. We attend about a dozen per season together. I always try to find an excuse during kiss cam to look like I don't know her or go to the bathroom or something.

Anonymous said...

A lanyard. That's a new one.

How does it rank with the following bad Shea give aways?

--a vinyl Mets poncho guaranteed to tear
--a Kahn's seat cushion
--a small Mets bat, sutiable for hitting nothing
--a rally cap with a foam ball velcroed on the the brim (this 1987 giveaway had to be the lamest I ever got)
--a Lee Mazzilli poster which goes perfect in your sister's bedroom, next to a picture of Sean Cassidy

Ed in Westchester said...

I can picture Darth Marc jumping through the TV screen to try and answer that question.

The Isles gave away a Bud Light Lanyard, sans pouch before a playoff game a few years back. Lame.
Only good part was the Bud Light models who were handing them out. Mama Mia!

Ed in Westchester said...

Who the heck is Justin Papelbon? Did you mean Jonathan from the Sox?

Mike V said...

At the 2000 World Series they did a lanyard giveaway, which made sense since you didn't want to wrinkle your ticket. I still have my ticket in taht lanyard as a matter of fact. But a Saturday night in August? Weird. What did they expect you to put in that thing?

Anonymous said...

Best kiss cam moment I've been present for (not at Shea) -- camera focuses on guy and older-looking woman. They both sit there awkwardly, as the crowd gets antsy. Finally, the guy mouths the words "She's my mom" to the camera -- and the whole stadium exclaims, "Augh!" in disgust.

Anonymous said...

Mike V - I had the opportunity to meet Omar Minaya in the Diamond Club before the game...and I realized what the lanyard was for. Did you ever see Wayne's World? With the backstage passes? I was flashing my D-Club pass around in that like I was Wayne and Garth...then when I met Minaya, I got all Garth-meets-Alice-Cooper on him. I thanked him for all his hard work :-)

Elliot Smilowitz said...

Oh come on, I love the Kiss Cam. The awkward groupings are a big part of the charm. Some of my favorite Kiss Cam cliches are:

-The 40-50-year-old guy who wants to publicly assert his masculinity by giving his wife the ugliest, sloppiest, most forceful (sometimes violent) kiss you can imagine.

-The older couple (like 70+) who find themselves on the camera and attempt probably their first tongue-kiss in two decades. Brings the house down every time.

-The pairing who ended up on the Kiss Cam despite clearly being 20 or more years apart in age.

-The absolute best, the creme de la creme: The 18-25-year-old guy and girl who went to the game as friends. When they find themselves on the camera, the guy goes for a kiss, partially to not be embarassed publicly and partially because he's got a secret crush on his friend (all 18-24 guys have secret crushes on all their female friends), and the girl tries to subtly avert her face but everyone in the crowd sees what's going on and starts booing wildly.

I've never been on the Kiss Cam but I would like to one day end up on the Kiss Cam paired with the random person sitting next to me who I'm not with. I'm thinking I would puff out my cheek toward the random stranger and let them plant one on me.

Mookie McFly said...

Two things...

At Shea about four years ago on Irish Night, they gave out Irish Spring Soap. Apparently the green baseball caps were not available. Were they trying to tell the Irish to shower? I go to this particular game every year and I have never gotten the green Mets cap. I have either gotten the black one with the shamrock or a different permutation. The worst had to be the soap...disappointing but also kind of offensive. Worst promotional item ever!

Last year I went to see the Mets play in Houton and they got Doug Mient(something) & Cammy in the dugout. Doug grabbed Mike and a struggle commenced. It was hilarious. I say keep the kiss cam...especially if I am sitting next to the recently available Christie Brinkley (or my wife).

Metstradamus said...

Justin is his third cousin twice removed...and he owes me money!

Ed in Westchester said...

Two dollars! I want my two dollars.

Anonymous said...

I like the Kiss Cam, but use that moment to publicly lament that my boyfriend and I will never be on the Kiss Cam, because we prefer to sit in the mezz and see more games than sit on the field level and get on smoochcam.

My favorite: person who has no f'in idea what's going on, and waves at the camera. It's the KISS CAM, not the "Act Surprised And Wave" Cam

Metstradamus said...


The first couple they caught on camera had these looks on their faces like they just had a knock down drag out fight about bills or infidelity or one of them mistakenly putting ketchup on the other one's hot dog instead of mustard or something. THAT, I must admit, was hilarious.

Anonymous said...

unser, I don't know who in the hell you think you are...but don't you ever f*ck with the seat cushions again. They're one of the best Shea giveaways. It almost lets you know they care.