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Feelings of violation and vindication

October 01, 2002 ~ 12:16 p.m.

If you donít want a sharp poke in the ribs, watch how you hold that paper!

This morning, I had the misfortune of sitting next to one of those thoughtless morons on the train who elbow you while searching for something or moving about and don't think anything of it. I gave the offender a jab in the ribs with my own elbow and she got the point. Sometimes you really need vigilance to deal with the shitheads. I did the same to a man on the train once as well, and received the same reaction Ė surprised glance in my direction, then realization, then adoption of a more rigid posture so as to make sure that I would not be violated again. You gotta love moments of vindication such as that. I sure do.

93 wins, now have a nice winter???

Where Major League Baseball is concerned, this was the wrong year to even think about discussing testing for steroid use, contraction, or threatening a labor strike. There are some good teams out there. The Yankees, of course, are headed to the postseason, but I think theyíre vulnerable. There are holes in their armor which the Anaheim Angels will repeatedly stab at until they are broken. Itíll be good to see Anaheim win, especially as they have not been to the postseason since 1986, and if you love great baseball, you must love the Angels. And the Oakland-Minnesota series promises to be good. Even though I think Oakland has the edge, itís good to see Minnesota, one of the teams threatened with contraction before this season started, winning their division and making the postseason. Then again, Minnesota has seen its team saved from the axe Ė for now Ė and would even further help to save their own skins if they beat Oakland to advance. What if they won the World Series? A bit improbable, but so was the case for the í87 Twins team who won it all.

However, letís ponder the fate of my Red Sox. Boston won 93 games. Years ago, that would have at least won us the wild-card if not the division. Now, however, in a year in which our left-fielder/designated hitter (Manny Ramirez) won the AL batting crown, we had the best road record in all of baseball (51-30), two of our pitchers are contenders for the Cy Young Award (Pedro Martinez and Derek Lowe), and finished the regular season twenty-four games above the .500 mark, we have to sit out the rest of the season. No playoffs for a team of this caliber? Boston deserved a spot in the playoffs. The fact that we didnít earn one just proves the incredible quality of other teams out there, especially in the AL West.

Somehow though, it seems like such a waste. We may as well have won only 53 games for all the postseason joy the Sox will have.

No wonder Iíve been getting strange looks lately Ö

Just what is the matter with me? What exactly does it say when itís a sunny 72 degrees and Iím quite comfortably wearing a long-sleeved chamois shirt and a woolen hat as I did Sunday, yesterday afternoon and, most likely, today?

I should be in the tropics, thatís what it says.

So what am I doing here, fifty-five latitudinal degrees north of the equator? Am I allowed to enter a plea of insanity?

The weird thing is, afternoons like the past three are slightly above normal for this time of year. Why, exactly, do I find fault with it?

Erk. Maybe itís because, much in the manner of yet another Red Sox season come to a close, Iím just simply left feeling unfulfilled.

Ė M.E.M.

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