A month of hell to come

Happenings in baseball yesterday:

LaTroy Hawkins blew another ninth inning lead to let the Reds tie the Cubs at 2. The Reds added 2 more in the 12th and won, 4-3. Since their wild card lead peaked at 1 1/2 games, the Cubs have lost 4 of 5 to the Mets and Reds. The Mets and Reds.

The Mets and Reds.

The Astros finished a sweep of the heretofore nigh unbeatable Cardinals, taking the Wild Card lead from the Cubs after trailing them by seven games in late August. R***r C*****s might pitch in the playoffs while Mark Prior stays home.


The Red Sox lost, 9-4, to the Devil Rays, Pedro Martinez's fourth straight loss. It was during this game that I realized that I don't like Pedro Martinez. At the same time, I feel honored to have spent the last six years in a city with the most talented pitcher of my generation, if not all-time, and ashamed to have supported the team for which he plays. I loved him for being a bully, if only because most of the aggression was taken out in 17-strikeout 1-hitters against the late '90's Y*****s. After all, he was Pedro. I liked him for being a baby, if only becuase most of his tantrums came after his bullpen blew a lead or he didn't get any run support and I found his case to be legitimate. After all, he was Pedro. But now that Pedro is just another human being making way too much money to throw a ball around, it's a lot harder to tolerate his pouting over being taken out of a game in which he'd pitched four miserable innings. Pedro, I hope you lead the Sox to the World Series this year.

And I hope you pitch somewhere else next year.

As expected, Johan Santana and the Twins shut down the Satans. As unexpected, the game's best pitcher left the game after the fifth inning, leaving the bullpen to squander a 3-1 lead and give the unspeakables their 60th come-from behind win of the season.

The Y*****s beat the Twins again in the nightcap. This team has more holes than any Y***** team since the early 90's. Their starting pitching is horrible. Their bullpen relies on three guys who have pitched about 25,000 innings apiece this season. Jason Giambi almost died this year. Bernie Williams and John Olerud are both over seventy years old. The one peaceful thing in the baseball world over the past few months has been the common knowledge that this team can't win a championship. After last night, I'm starting to think they can.




Since my last post...

I got a small raise at work and no longer have to fill out timesheets.

Jill and I ate dinner with Laura and Gary.

The Red Sox took two of three from the Y*****s.

I picked apples and broke a tooth, assuring that I never eat any of these apples in their original form.

Dr. Uncle Bob tore up my mouth and shoved in a new temporary tooth.

The Red Sox clinched a playoff spot.


Foulke 'em

Keith Foulke is killing me slowly, and it's only September.

On that note, I think it's time for bmoconline's baseball awards and predictions:

AL MVP- Manny Ramirez
others to consider: Johan Santana, Gary Sheffield

NL MVP- Barry Bonds
others to consider: no one is close

AL Cy Young- Johan Santana
others to consider: Curt Schilling

NL Cy Young- Randy Johnson
others to consider: Armando Benitez, R***r C*****s, Carl Pavano, Jason Schmidt, Jake Peavy, Carlos Zambrano, Eric Gagne

AL Manager- Lou Piniella
others to consider- Buck Showalter, Joe Torre

NL Manager- Tony LaRussa
others to consider- Bobby Cox, Felipe Alou

New York def. Oakland
Minnesota def. Boston

St. Louis def. San Francisco
Chicago def. Atlanta

Minnesota def. New York

St. Louis def. Chicago

World Series
Minnesota def. St. Louis
Series MVP- Justin Morneau


A Portrait of the Stats as a Young Man

Exerpts from my 6th grade English journal follow. I'll edit names to protect the innocent.

September 30, 1991
Pennant Races

I am very interested in the Major League Baseball pennant races. In the American League East, the Toronto Blue Jays are 4 1/2 games ahead of the Boston Red Sox. I hope Toronto wins. In the National League West, the Los Angeles Dodgers are 1 game ahead of the Atlanta Braves. I don't really care who wins that. The Minnesota Twins and Pittsburgh Pirates have clinched division titles.
I hope the Blue Jays and Pirates are in the World Series.

Note: The Twins defeated the Braves in the 1991 World Series.

October 8, 1991
Blue Jays

The Toronto Blue Jays are my favorite team. They lost the first game of the American League Playoffs yesterday. The Minnesota Twins beat them, 5-4.
My favorite players are Todd Stottlemyre and Roberto Alomar. I also like Devon White and Kelly Gruber. I don't like Joe Carter though.

Note: The Blue Jays would go on to win the next two World Series, including 1993's on a walk-off home run in Game 6 by Joe Carter.

October 15, 1991
For Christmas, I hope to get a lizard. I think I will, and I have already picked him out. He is green and small, and called an anole. I'll get the lizard myself if myh parents give me gravel for the aquarium, the aquarium top, and any luxuries for him.
If it's a boy, I think he'll be George. If it's a girl, I'll name it Liz. If I don't know, I'll name it George, or Sandy. I really hope I get it.

Note: I didn't get my frist lizard, Caesar, until August 3, 2003. He died that winter. I'm know the proud parent of two newts, Pokey and Snake.

November 5, 1991
A New League

Last Friday, Eric Schr**ck and I started a fake football league. We use all the same teams as the National Football League, and play games the sasme way, but we make up the games. We each "play" the games, and record the scores withtout the other person knowing. Then, in school, or on the bus on the way home on Tuesday we average the scores, and the highest wins. we randomly decide who plays each other each week, and even have a formula to see which team is favored AND by how much. After we average them, we see if the formula worked. The league is called the FFL, or Fantasy Football League, and has worked out greatly.

Note: I never did patent Fantasy Football, and am not yet rich. Not sure it would have taken off with these rules anyway.

January 3, 1992
Super Bowl

Yesterday the conference championships were played in football. They determine the Super Bowl. In the A.F.C. game, the Denver Broncos played the Buffalo Bills. I wanted Denver to win. There was no score at halftime. Finally, after a tough battle, Buffalo won, 10-7. In the N.F.C. game, I wanted Detroit to beat Washington. Tthe Lions were good, and only trailed 17-10 at the half. But the second half was a blowout. The Washington Redskins won, 41-10, and will go to the big game.
The Super Bowl will be Buffalo vs. Washington. The 'Skins are 6-point favorites. I hope they triumph, and think they can win. My prediction is Washington 31-14. I hope the score is infinity-0, Washington winning. The Redskins are my fourth favorite team. The Bills are twenty-fifth out of twenty-eight. I'll be furious if Buffalo wins the Super Bowl.

Note: The Washington Redskins won the 1992 Super Bowl. I was not furious.

March 31, 1992
Little League Draft

The Queensbury Little League Draft was held yesterday. Since he's on the board, my dad went. My coach's name is Walt Br*wn. On my team, we have Mark (Slowy) L*singer, Jay G*nyo, Joe Ort*no(fish), Ken Br*wn, Jason Br*wn, Brian F*sher, Sean Th*rpe, and other people I don't know yet. I think we'll be terrible. Jay and I will probably be the best players on our team, although Slowy was chosen first.

Note: I believe Foothills Trophy finished the season 4-9, placing 4th in the league tournament. Slowy was the best catcher I ever pitched to, but did not make the All-Star team. Jay and I did. I finished the season 4-5 with a 0.83 ERA, but gave up 8.6 unearned runs per game. To this day, shortstop Ken Br*wn and second baseman Brian Post*lka hold the all-time Little League record for errors in a season by a middle infield pair, with 237.



The past 8 days in bmoconland have brought an 89th birthday party, a 60th, and a 4th. On Saturday, we celebrated Rich (Jill's stepfathertypeindividual)'s 60th at a big Irish bash in Rye, NH. Today, it's my cousin Rachel's 4th, with dinner at the Boeckes'. I guess people my age don't have parties anymore. Maybe they'll start again when they turn 60.


Anonymous Posts

One thing I love about blogger is the interactive forum created by users' ability to comment on other people's entries. I appreciate all the feedback I've gotten so far, with one major exception. I will not accept truly anonymous posts. If you're not a member of blogspot, you're more than welcome to leave an "anonymous" comment as long as you sign off at the end, but completely anonymous posts will be deleted. Even if you don't know me, leave a comment with a first name or a nickname and I'll let the post stand, but frankly, if I don't know who you are, I don't care what you think.
Love and kisses,


My life in a box

Today, I returned from work to find that my mother had sent me a care package, including Colleen's signature homemade creme de menthe brownies and cookies, pictures of my high school tennis team and a little league All-Star team (Mom wants me to keep this one because I'm standing next to Edmonton Trappers prospect Brendan Harris), and various writing samples from throughout my education, including, but not limited to:

-a packet of exercises I had done in kindergarten, including the number 3 written over and over and lines drawn to connect capital and lowercase A's, b's, and so on;

-correspondence between my parents and the director of the BOCES Young Scholars program, which I entered and later dropped (more on this later) ;

-my sixth grade English journal, which exposed my hatred for everything from nature walk field trips to the Buffalo Bills to school itself (I hope to regale you with entries from this journal in future blog posts);

-every report I wrote for eighth grade health class with Darryl's dad, all roughly 60-70 words of nonsense stretched out to fill three pages;

-an awful (but funny) poem about OJ Simpson as a Black History Month requirement in 9th grade English that could only have been written by a somewhat sheltered suburbanite;

-a short story I wrote in 10th grade about my tight-shortsed global studies teacher;

-an awful recount of the Bay of Pigs Invasion, subtly trashed in red pen by none other than Jim Coccia (of marklow.blogspot fame);

-a sappy coming-of-age novella I wrote in college;

-a copy of Piecework, Bentley's literary magazine, which I contributed to and helped edit my senior year;

After spending hours reliving my youth, I came to two startling conclusions:

1)I've never written well.
2)I've wasted almost all my talents.

Throughout the box, I found letters to my parents, standardized test results, and progress reports all indicating the same thing- this is one brainy little bastard.

"Bryan has so mush to offer his classmates"
"Bryan recognizes numbers to 5... and beyond"
"Bryan is meticulous. His focus never leaves the task at hand"
"Bryan uses humor with skill and sophistication"
"Bryan (in 4th grade) tested better than 96% of 8th graders in math"
"Bryan... won a national award from the league for acheiving perfect scores on monthly problem-solving tests"
"Bryan will be wiping his own ass by the end of the semester"

The list goes on. After reading much of my own work throughout my schooling, I can't help but desagree with those who said I could write, but it's tough to argue with such consistent praise. Which brings me to the question...

What the hell happened? I was a smart kid with promise. I could have gone anywhere, done anything. Here's an update for you, teachers- Bryan lives in suburban Boston, where he pretends to be an accountant for a quasi-religious based non-profit doomed for failure by day and obsesses over a hopeless baseball team (or two) by night. What happened to the kid who won national math competitions and wrote short books at age 6?

I blame college.

There it is, folks. State-regulated public school requirements may have stunted my growth slightly. Teachers who were more fit to stitch NASCAR t-shirts than determine my future (I'm talking about you, Kathleen Burton) may not have helped. But the real reason I haven't amounted to anything at age 24 is Bentley College.

Having realized this, I decided to try to assess which aspects of college I regret and which may have carried some value. Don't take this as wisdom from a self-actualized man, but as advice from a 24-year-old who knows he could have done better, and that there's still time. Here goes the old college try:

On school choice:
Perhaps my biggest regret is choosing a school based on whether I could play singles as a freshman and whether I was far enough from my parents without having too long a drive home. If I could do it all again, I would go to a huge school, where I could change my major to something other than accounting, finance, marketing, or management if I needed to, take classes in something other than the above (perhaps a film class; maybe journalism), meet people who wanted more out of education than to know where to buy the cheapest 30-pack, and perhaps most importantly, paint my face and heckle the opposing team at a women's basketball game without being the only one doing so.

On majors:
There are two basic bachelor's degrees one can achieve; a Bachelor of Science and a Bachelor of Arts. One studies things that are known and can be mastered. The other studies disciplines that grow every day. My BS in accountancy taught me (or could have taught me, if I were paying attention) everything there is to know about accounting. I read, accepted what I'd read, closed the book, and barely passed the test. Is there any better way to spend four years of one's life than learning enough about something rigid and defined in order to practice that science for the next forty years? A BS gives a man a fish. A BA teaches a man to fish. If only I had grown up in an economy where a skilled fisherman could get a job...

On drugs and alcohol:
I can't say with a straight face that I wish I had drunk less in college. Drinking is a major part of the experience and I probably became a more likeable person as a result of my excess. Marijuana, on the other hand, is not a pastime. I do not regret having tried it, and I certainly never took it too far, but spending 95% percent of the first three years of my twenties with people who would rather smoke a bowl than read a book couldn't have helped my ascent into adulthood much.

On culture:
Perhaps my biggest regret about Bentley is the nearly ubiquitous belief that there's nothing more to life than playing Beirut, downloading the new DMX single, and learning how to play the stocks well enough to retire early. I learned everything about Eminem and Adam Sandler, when I could have been enjoying Bjork and Christopher Guest at the least, if not learning about Brahms and Fellini.

On hobbies:
Once tennis practice got out (or once class got out after I quit tennis after my sophomore year), I didn't do a damn thing. I might have played a little Super Mario Brothers on my computer. Maybe I watched the Sox game and had a beer (or 17). Most importantly, I didn't read a book for leisure from age 18 to 21. I kid you not. I always fancied myself quite the writer, and I do have impeccable grammar and adequate form and can employ humor well, but I've never written anything decent in my life. Given my education, this is not surprising. No one my age should expect anything they put down on paper to come alive if they haven't read Kerouac. If you don't care enough about fiction to read Vonnegut, why try to join the ranks of fiction writers? By comparing myself to the people around me, many of whom had nothing more in their future than a life of underwriting for Connecticut Insurance by day and shotgunning Pabst by night, I assumed I could write better than anyone else. I couldn't. And I didn't make myself learn.

I don't want to close this rant on a sour note. I don't entirely regret going to Bentley. I made some great friends there, and got a degree that could potentially earn me some money. It landed me in Boston, which is a much better place than I once thought. I also realize that there's hope for me yet. I'm 24, not 94. I don't necessarily think I need to go to grad school to learn more and become the person I want to be, as long as I find the right hobbies and surround myself with the right people. I've had a life of good opportunity and good fortune, and have many great years ahead of me. Let's just hope I don't spent them in some dank dorm room playing bongoes to Pink Floyd while the fourth bowl gets passed around.

Next time, I'll make it Wilco.


Welcome to Fenway Park; Children allowed

As difficult as it was as a Sox fan watching Scott Kazmir sodomize the Red Sox last night, I pity the Mets the most. A few facts:
I went to 11 Sox games this year. They won 8.
Curt Schilling has lost just once at Fenway this season, Pedro Martinez twice. I saw all three games live.
Scott Kazmir was born in 1984.


All my friends have better blogs

I thought I'd get a chance to fiddle with this thing today, but I didn't. On the blog agenda for the near future:
Links to friends' sites
Short lists about which you don't care, including:
- recent movies I've seen
- recent CDs I've purchased
- recent books I've read
- recent nerds I've punched

No, there was absolutely no reason to share any of this with you, but I'll read it tomorrow and remember what I have to do. As for tonight, dingers!


Welcome back, Mac users!

Mac goobers rejoice! bmoconline is back! To commemorate the 9,000th day of my life, I've decided to officially switch to blogspot. All features will continue to be hosted at geocities, but daily (or so) journal entries will be posted here. Switch those links, web-ringers!