Monday, December 21, 2009

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A nice note from Tom


Two quickies:

If you're on facebook I started a Blue Cap Army page (actually was suggested to me) so you may want to join.

Tom sent over the note below, and I thought I would share it because it makes me feel less dopey about "wasting" three hours on a Sunday working on the site.   I love doing this but sometimes I look at my watch and I wonder what the heck I'm doing....then a note like this comes in.  Thanks Tom!


     I just thought I’d drop you a line about a few items on your site:

1)       Blue Caps – I liked this idea as soon as I saw it.  The criticisms you note are comical, but speak to what a lot of Internet traffic (on sports, certainly) seems to be about: complaining about anything.  Your site is called “Mets Police,” but it is not mean-spirited or whiny, merely wondering (and concerned) about why people do certain things.  Across other blogs, you see mostly demands for total satisfaction, as if that’s how life is.  I think anyone thinking you had this simple, yet brilliant idea for personal credit doesn’t even understand what your site is about.  By the way, I’d add blue shirts, as well.  We are a disadvantage, though.  The seats at Citi Field are green, so the total blue we’d appreciate comes from the crowd alone.  While in Cincinnati and St. Louis in recent years, I was struck not only that all the seats were red, but that everyone wore red shirts, mostly with Reds or Cardinals logos (obviously), but not all.  They simply wore something red and in respect to that, I wore a red Brooklyn Cyclones collared shirt to both parks, to blend in.  No one in either Great American or Busch called me out on my true loyalties, even if they noticed the Cyclones emblem on my chest.  So keep up the Blue Cap idea. I’ll certainly be wearing mine.  Its still my favorite Met hat to wear, though last year, I wore two Final Season of Shea caps, one black, one blue, to some games (Holding on a bit, I guess).  Toward that end, for Christmas, I am giving my three sisters a picture of me and my oldest sister Patti at the brick outside Citi Field that I purchased to honor our father.  We are both wearing Blue Met caps (see attached photo)

2)       More Obstructed View – I love that you keep the fire on them, to just admit it exists, but I was thinking about when I was a kid and you could go to Yankee Stadium or even in 1990, when I went to the old Comiskey Park, in its final year.  Those early (1909-1923) concrete and steel parks all had upper levels held up by beams, which you might find yourself stuck behind.  I remember that it was a joke amongst those in the crowd, as to who had the unlucky seats.  It was just an unfortunate reality, just as foul poles are.  But those plexi-glass staircases are a choice made by the club, not a necessary evil, so I’d keep my focus on them.

3)       John Milner – He was my friend Kevin’s favorite Met and he was the closest thing we had to a Mantle/Stargell hitter, in regard to long distance home runs, until Dave Kingman, Darryl Strawberry and Mile Piazza came along.  He was one of the keys to the ’73 Pennant, my favorite team, since I was 12 and my friends and I pretty much lived at Shea that Summer.  I was very happy when he got to win a World Series with the “We are Family” Pirates of 1979.  When he died at age 50, 10 years ago this coming January 4, he was the first player of my youth to pass away when I was an adult.  It hit me hard.  Whenever an old ballplayer dies, to me its like a death in the family.  I think that feeling for the game and its people in uniform is missing from all those who are complaining constantly, about anything at all.  Its about the game, which I can see you from your site, you understand.  Money, agents, the Union and the owners are part of the business, which will always be secondary, no what people want to believe.  See below for a few baseball poems of mine, two related to the thoughts above and the third about the final day at Shea (Note on Poem #2: I now live in an apartment down the hall from where the one I grew up in, where my mom still lives).  I’m a poet, so for Christmas, I’d like to share a few pieces with you, since I’ve seen your work and appreciated it.  What baseball is missing today is a little more poetry.  That’s what I’m here for.

Keep up the good work, kid,
Merry Christmas,

The Game

The game is not a business;
The business is the game;
For well after the business dies,
the game remains the same.
The game’s what writes the story;
The game’s what spurs the poem;
The business has no chance to thrive
if no one’s heading home.
The business was created
by uninspired men;
The game survived through children
who remained just as then.
The real fans comprehend the facts;
The bottom line’s the same:
The clueless grasp the business;
 The soulful love the game.

The Boy From Down the Hall
(They’re All Immortals)

Did I ever tell you about young Tom,
the boy from down the hall?
He lived for Summer, lived for Spring;
Lived for Winter, Fall.

You used to hear him crying out,
every time the good guys won;
And his joy was real and seemed destined
to never cease or be done.

He lived with mom while dad moved out,
to the agreement of each and all;
Though the boy could feel him daily,
through the echoes in the hall.

They shared the grass and filled the aisles,
while the youngsters sat and prayed;
The boy from down the hall awoke,
in the hopes that he hadn’t grayed.

The years went by, the Eighties, Nineties,
so, too, did the boy evolve;
Through twenties, thirties, old and new,
he lived on his resolve.

I heard John Milner died today
and I ran to tell young Tom;
But he don’t live down the hall no more,
though you still can find his mom.

You know, we lose a part of us
every time that an old friend dies;
It makes no difference where they came from,
as long as they were one of the guys.

I can’t say what became of young Tom,
but at night, I can hear him call;
They’re all immortals, don’t you know,
for the boy from down the hall.


Queries to an Usher on Doomsday

Could I sit once more
for a moment or two?
Would you mind that much
if I walked on through?

Did they tell you yet
if there’s seats for sale?
Will you recall, tomorrow,
sights from the upper rail?

Did you see my dad
in the last few days?
Will his vision surface
through the Midnight haze?

Were you here so long,
that you can recall:
Stars going up the gap?
Icons at the wall?

Is the grass as green
as it was before?
Might old photographs
fade beyond allure?

When you leave this yard,
on its final day,
will you not turn back?
Have no words to say?

Does the gray shed easy?
Did we reach the moon?
Has the joy of Summer
left us far too soon?

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