It's been almost 18 hours since Doug Mientkiewicz squeezed Keith Foulke's underhanded toss to clinch the World Series for the Red Sox. I've watched some Baseball Tonight and Sportscenter, read 10 or 12 ESPN articles about the game, and replayed moments from the last two weeks over and over in my head, but I still have no idea what to say about all this. I don't know who to be today.

The first thing I wanted to do when the game was sealed and the hugs had been thrown around Our House West was to call my dad. He's not a die-hard Sox fan for life who never thought he would live to see them win a title. In fact, he's rumored to have told my mom during last week's ALCS that "it's just a game. it doesn't matter." Sure, words like that border on inhuman during this year's ultimate battle between good and evil, but it wasn't my dad's attitude on the big leagues that made me think of him during last night's revelrly. It was his attitude on Little League.

Dad grew up on a farm. He got up at negative three every morning, did chores, ate breakfast, walked to and from a one-room schoolhouse uphill both ways, did more chores, and went to bed without supper if he was lucky enough to steal a bed from one of his 28 siblings. Baseball played no part in his young life, but he wouldn't let the same happen to me.

Dad had this glove (and I'm sure he still does) that was about as effective as an oven mitt and a rubber band. It was maybe two inches longer than his fingers, and about as thick as one patty of a Big Mac. I got a new glove every few years and my little sister had a couple of gloves, including a junior catcher's mitt, but Dad never wanted another glove for himself. He'd take Ol' Worthless out and play catch with me, never worrying much about hurting himself with a seven-year-old's feeble toss. He always worked late and only had so much daylight and three kids to share it with, but he made plenty of time to play catch with his only son, just like his dad never did with him.

At age nine, I learned how to pitch. It was in pitching where I could excel; where I was better than the other kids; where baseball started to mean something to me. Control was my craft at nine. The ability to throw the ball over the plate was to Little League what Jennifer Lopez's ass is to her music career. By eleven or twelve, control gave way to velocity.

I still threw with Dad in the front yard, only I was throwing a little harder. He could have stood up, but he always insisted on going into the catcher's crouch and giving me a target. By twelve, I was putting some heat into the ball, never relying on a pitch other than my fastball and still pitching from 46 feet away. I wasn't the hardest thrower in the league, but I certainly wouldn't have caught my own pitches with Ol' Worthless.

But Dad did. Dad would end the sessions when he thought it was getting too dark or it was time for dinner, but if I were him, I would have given up much earlier. I can still see the palm of his left hand, raw and red like an uncooked steak, but always ready to throw on Ol' Worthless when the sun rose again, because his son was a pitcher, and his son loved baseball.

Today, I love baseball more than I ever have in my life. I've devoted a near-sleepless month, and most of a season (not to mention the last eighteen or so), to watching grown men play a kids' game, yet I don't feel like I've wasted a second. Some of the most memorable and important moments of my life will revolve around a game, which, even though I never succeeded playing later in life, has become a large part of my identity. If not for my dad, I might have chosen chess.

Thanks, Dad.


No, Bill, thank you

Why do the Red Sox insist on thanking God for every victory? You're the one getting on base, Bill Mueller. You're striking guys out, Mike Timlin. You're playing right field and having goofy ears, Trot Nixon.

Regardless, 27 outs to heaven.


Mom, etc.

Happy birthday, Mom.

Despite its popuplessness, I'm still not a fan of blogspot. I am, however, a fan of the Red Sox and their Game 1 win last night.

While we're on the topic of fanhood (or is it fanship?), I'm not a fan of shopping trips that include Target, Jordan's Furniture, and Bed Bath & Beyond. I am, however, a fan of the Chicken Bone Saloon and watching Mark Bellhorn swat dingers while struggling through a jigsaw puzzle with Jill.

I'm not a fan of people who mispunctuate and overabbreviate in emails, just because they find the medium informal. I am, however, a fan of those who are dorkily excited by subordinate clauses.


Everything in its right place

I now have something in common with Derek Jeter, Roger Clemens, Alex Rodriguez, and Andy Pettitte. We'll all watch this year's World Series at home. I remember the thrill of watching Anaheim and San Francisco play in the 2002 Series; an affair in which I had a rooting interest, but wouldn't have been crushed if the other team won. This year, I have more of a rooting interest than ever (yes, even '92 and '93), but even if the Sox lose, it will be the Cardinals and one of the great groups of baseball fans in the whole country who get to celebrate.

On the flip side, Jill's Halloween party will be the night of Game Six. So much for Halloween-related festivities.


Sox win!



Thank you, Red Sox

If being a Red Sox fan is so painful, why do hundreds of thousands of us keep the faith? The last three nights are the perfect answer. Trends and momentum aside, tomorrow's Game Seven of the ALCS will likely crush the souls of New Englanders and Sox fans everywhere, possibly moreso than '46, '67, '75, '86, or last year, after these impossible comebacks. This is why I'd like to thank the Red Sox now for the incredible season and phenomenal playoffs, and even for building my hopes going into tomorrow. Why not these guys? Thanks, Sox.


2 Years of bmoconline!

Happy 2 year anniversary of bmoconline. I'm celebrating by eating my first bowl of cereal in about two years. You can celebrate by reading this breakdown of the last two years of cyberme.

October 2002- I began the month single, unemployed, and living with my parents in Maine. On the fourth I moved to Boston, and on the sixteenth, I debuted bmoc.0catch.com, just as the Angels had knocked the Y*****s out in the ALDS and I had soomething to celebrate.

November 2002- Begin the Deutsche Bank/ State Street era; Eric and I steal a kitten, Skittles, from the basement of our apartment building

January 2003- I moved the blog to geocities.com/bmoconline, reducing pop-ups by 29%; Petit is married

February 2003- Begin the Marybeth era; I turn 23

April 2003- End the Marybeth era; begin the Nicole era

May 2003- Begin the uncle era- Lauren is born; End the Deutsche Bank/ State Street era; begin the MBE Library era

June 2003- End the Nicole era; begin the Biffy era

July 2003- Darren is married

August 2003- Biffy and I get what we think is an iguana, Caesar, in Atlantic City

September 2003- I move to Brookline, achieve middle class status

October 2003- the Cubs and Red Sox lose on back-to-back tragic evenings in the League Championship Series- bmoconline is devastated; at least the Marlins win the World Series

February 2004- End the Biffy era; begin the Jill era; I turn 24; begin Scrabble obsession

April 2004- At the peak of my Scrabble obsession, Jill and I travel to Saratoga to watch our first Scrabble tournament; Scrabble obsession ends

June 2004- Jill closes on a new house, the moving and renovations begin

July 2004- My parents move to North Carolina; Jill and I get two newts, Pokey and Snake

August 2004- I make the permanent move to bmoconline.blogspot.com

September 2004- We renew the Brookline lease- exit Adam and Dana, enter Amy and Juliet; I'm "promoted" to Business Manager at work, according to some

October 2004- I'm still in Brookline, still at the MBE Library, and still with Jill. Skittles lives with my parents, Caesar has joined his namesake, and Pokey and Snake live with Jill, not far away. Brad's wedding is next on the horizon. I don't expect any nieces, nephews, or new board game obsessions in the next year.

Also, the albums list has been updated at the old site.



Everything is spinning and has been for about 18 hours now. I don't know if this is baseball related.

Happy birthdate to Lauryn Elizabeth Jeffrey, Jill's first niece. Please don't confuse her with Lauren Elizabeth Carey, my first niece. My niece will remain cuter.


Will Sit Around For Money

Post deleted. That is not a palindrome.


Praying for a Strike

I can only think of one outcome to this week's ALCS that is both desirable and possible. In the first inning of game one, Shilling hits Jeter in the head with a fastball and knocks him unconscious. No one cares and someone pinch runs for Jeter. Schilling then hits ARod in the jaw and Varitek follows up his '.260 hitters' remark from earlier this season with "we don't throw at .286 hitters either." The benches clear and a brawl breaks out so bloody that neither team has nine players capable of playing any game in the next 9 days. The series is canceled and the NCLS winner is declared champion of the World Series.

Alternately, the next nine days will be some of the most painful of my life. I'd rather have a tooth pulled every day.

On a happier note, Eric, Shayna, Mike, Lisa, Reggie, Jill, and I caught Wilco at Skidmore on Friday night. It took about a song and a half for Jeff Tweedy to convince most of the audience that the torch has been passed. The voice of American rock (if not all music not conceived on an American Idol stage) is Jeff Tweedy's. I was equally impressed with the audience, many of whom gyrated arhythmically and asexually, abandoning all conscience, seemingly for my entertainment. Oh, and the band wailed.

On Saturday, Jill and I babysat for Lauren while Kris and Ty celebrated their 5th wedding anniversary at a haunted corn maze. Lauren is still adorable, albeit more snot-covered than I remember her. Can't wait for the next time.


Grady Gardenhire Can Eat My Ass

How do you try to get three innings out of Joe Nathan? Baseball is not fair.



A Front Row Seat

It's playoff time, which can only mean one thing. Actually, I suppose it could mean several things. For me, it means that winter has reared its ugly head, sending its evils straight to my head and throat. Convenient, I suppose, in that I get to watch more baseball from my couch than I would from my desk at work.

Another New York state weekend awaits, this time with plans to see Wilco at Skidmore with Eric, Shayna, Mike and Lisa on Friday night. On Saturday night, Jill and I will babysit Lauren when Kris and Ty go out for their fifth wedding anniversary.

30 weeks until Spring...


Even the great ones strike out

I think I've spoken before about the irony of blogger life. When you're busy and have things worth blogging about, there's no time to blog, but when your life is boring, you have all kinds of time to complain about 6th grade little league infields and pay-before-you-pump gas stations. I have a lot of catching up to do.

On Thursday night, Jill and I accompanied Jaron, Sarah, and Dave to the Paradise for another Supergrass show. Christ, they wail. Gaz and the boys had some fun with the crowd, changing tempos like guitar pics and shocking the regulars with an acoustic set halfway through. As Stephen Thomas Erlewine said in his review of "Life on Other Planets", the world is a better place for having Supergrass.

Friday night was a rare Boston bar outing for Jill, Jason and me. We hit up the Wonder Bar for some classy cocktails and baked brie, and stayed out into the wee hours (11:00, to be exact, just in time to watch Juliet and Virginia get ready for their night on the townn, which would begin a half hour later.

Saturday night was a different story altogether. Jason and I took the shiny new Saab to the East Village of Manhattan, where Pat and Rob treated us to a night on the town, complete with Yuenglings al fresco, four straight versions of "Living on a Prayer" or something (the others might have been AC/DC or Def Leppard or some tripe like that) at the Alphabet Lounge, the most awful American bar I've been to in my three plus years of legal drinking, and a German bar where I learned how freeing a urinal trough can be when you're alone (you just can't miss!). We stayed out until last call at 4 (as I have every night I've spent in New York state this year) and went to bed around 5:30, a quarter of a day later than I could force my eyes open in Massachusetts the night before.

Today brought the real prize- the last Montreal Expos game ever, live from Shea Stadium. We got decent seats in a stadium whose parking lot could fit 75 Fenways, enjoyed $2 sodas and hot dogs, and watched the Mets crush the Senators-to-be, 8-1. QHS hero Brendan Harris succumbed to our merciless heckling, going 0-for-3 with a walk (while he will always be known as the last Expos batter ever to reach base), with a web gem, a 150-foot throwing error, and a strikeout. Any sense of pride I felt in watching a hometown boy (beside whom I played on 5 All-Star teams from '88-'92) take the field in a major league uniform was trumped by the surprising thrill of watching Brendan strike out for the first time ever. Good luck with the school board on that one.

After joining throngs of melancholy Canadians bid adieu to their baseball team with signs and chants, the ride back to Boston with JJY was as gay a four-hour span as I've ever been a part of (yes, Darry's wedding included). Beth Orton's voice is no match for a couple of half-red-faced goons from Brookline. Get in the pit!