July 2009

Can You Smell It?

The July 31st trade deadline, I’m talking about!  C’mon!  Gotta admit, I do love this time of year… keeping a close eye on which teams might be buyers and which might be sellers…and which might sell their souls (ie: top prospects) for the one shot this year to be the World Champ.

We saw the Matt Holliday deal go down today, while monitoring the Roy Halladay situation… right up ’til 7:00pm, while I was on-set doing the pregame show, I was asking our Research Grand Poobah, Jeff Quagliata (you can call him Quags)…if Halladay was still listed as the starter for the Jays’ game vs. the Rays…I’d read a quick blurb in Pete Abe’s LoHud blog that “perhaps” a Halladay to the Phillies deal was close…thought he might get pulled from his start at the last second…but it didn’t happen and he took the ball for Cito tonight.

No, Seriously, What’s That Smell?!  As I walked up to the set for the 4th inning cutin, I smelled a chemical kinda smell that I absolutely love, but couldn’t remember what it is…Lighting Legend George Greczylo told me that it’s contact cement!  I remember using that in school and I don’t know why (insert “stoner” joke here) but I love that smell…just like I love the smell of regular gasoline as well as airplane fuel…weird…anybody else like that?

So, George, Paul Ferrigno (you got to know him in a previous Blob) and me started reminiscing about glue in elementary school…I mentioned how I loved to pick and peel all the glue off the gigantic bottles of glue we shared in class…Paul said same thing with him.  George brought up spreading glue on the palm of the hand, letting it dry, then peeling it off…always good fun, too.  Then he added, or what about putting contact cement on the palm of your hand and lighting it on fire!  (insert sound effect of album scratch bringing everything to a halt here)…What?!  No, George…first of all, I don’t think I walked around with a lighter in kindergarten…and second of all, I thought moms and pops said NOT to play with matches!  I guess we just found out what George’s parents didn’t know ANYTHING about!  Gonna have to check on that…perhaps George’s dad was a movie pyrotechnics expert.

I can’t wait for the 7th inning cutin…

Something Old, Something New

I can’t believe I did it again!  I was heating up some soup for dinner tonight, and I caught myself just staring into the microwave for about 20 seconds, like watching a bowl of soup spinning around in a circle is the most awe-inspiring event ever.  Good grief.  I Blobbed about this before…I just don’t get it.  Why do I just stand there, watching it as if something incredible is going to happen, when I know that in 29..28..27..26 seconds, it’s going to be done.  Can’t I find anything better to do for those 29 seconds?!

Hey, you’ve gotta check out the picture below…I recently Blobbed that my son has gotten me into Arrested Development.  Well, he was hanging out with me in my office a couple days ago, and he stayed behind while I went upstairs to the studio to do the postgame show.

Today, when studio producer/impresario Bill Boland was sitting in my office, he looked behind me and said, “Who’s that?”, and he pointed at a picture next to my printer.  Well, that particular picture is SUPPOSED to be of me, my wife and some friends hanging in Islamorada, FL.  But instead, it was THIS picture…

Funke.jpgThat’s right…Dr. Tobias Funke (David Cross) from Arrested Development!  My son had secretly replaced the one picture with this one.  Classic!  I laughed so hard I nearly fell outta my chair!  Well done, Ty…well done.

Back from Break

Welcome back!  Really weird having that extra day off, wasn’t it?  Just kind of threw me out of whack, but then along comes an 8th inning rain delay…our 75th of the season, I think???… and all seems right with the world…not really.  Love the rain only because it keeps my water bill down from less sprinkler usage.

Here’s my All-Star Break version of “How I Spent My Summer Vacation”…spanned the entire Tri-State area and beyond, logging a lot o’ miles in the Vista Cruiser…among the excitement, welcoming an exchange student from France for 2 weeks, as she spends time with our daughter and sees NYC for the first time…chauffering them around…sightseeing…beach…major rollercoaster riding at Six Flags…eating fried dough covered in powdered sugar…nearly giving it right back after riding the biggest coaster in the park…more driving…trip to JFK to pick up our son, who decided to make a cameo appearance at Casa Lorenz this summer…watching backlogged episodes of Eureka and Psych on the DVR with him, plus he turned me on to Arrested Development and now I’m hooked!  So, we’ll probably blow out the rest of the existing episodes over the next few days…this “work” thing is really getting in the way of that!  We’re watching those on Hulu…and he’s just informed me that there are new episodes of Psych on Hulu as well…my eyeballs are gonna be hurtin’.  I might end up looking at the wrong camera in studio I’ll be so bleary!

Also made the trek to Montclair, NJ, Thursday to play in Yogi Berra’s annual charity golf tournament.  I wish everybody could meet Yogi.  He’s one of the greatest, most humble men I know…and very giving of his time, obviously.  I had a great time moving chunks of real estate around that day…our team actually played well, finishing the scramble at 9-under…big thanks to Seafood Bobby, Joe, Peter and Ray for keeping me entertained and out of trouble (mostly).  Awesome guys.

Then it was back to work today…in early to tape the latest edition of Forbes Sportsmoney, Presented by Fox Business Network (gotta pay some bills)…with Michael Ozanian, who’s a great, high-energy guy…definitely has a passion the biz side of sports and brings it to the table every time.  Then pregame, game..rain delay…

Oh wait…10:47pm…I’m told we’ll be resuming play soon!  Enjoy the rest of the game!

Ahhhh….Those Crazy Kids!

It’s intern day at the studio, when the group of YES summer interns gather to listen to various aspects of the broadcasting biz. I was the leadoff hitter, so they got to learn what it’s like to be an anchor. I opened with “Has everybody seen Anchorman: The Legend of Run Burgundy? Well, that’s all you need to know to do my job.” And I walked out of the room. I thought about heading to my office with shelves made of rich mahogany and many leather-bound books, but I decided to go back in and chat some more.

Good bunch of kids, a few could have used an electric zapper strapped under their chair to bring ’em to life a little more, but that’s pretty much par for the course when a bunch of college kids are forced into a conference room to hear older people drone on about work!

I’ll give you the Cliff Notes of my talk,

1) Pay attention and soak up everything around you.
2) Ask questions. We at YES are more than happy to answer them.
3) Ya Gotta Want It. Be passionate about what you want to do, whether it’s TV or anything else. It’ll make your work life much more enjoyable.
4) You really DON’T need a dog named Baxter. And speaking at least a BIT of Spanish will actually help.

I’ve got a few more years, maybe, or mining Anchorman references for my intern speeches. Then I’m going to have to bank on Anchorman II, which I hear is being worked on or at least considered, for new material, because no kid in 2027 is gonna want to hear me say “I’m kind of a big deal” as my dentures drop onto the floor.

One good question came from Alexa, who’s interning in our production ranks,she wondered if anybody ever considered having me Tweet from the set. I told her I am Blobbing my thoughts, and my Twitter account links to said Blob. But that’s as far as I go. I just don’t want to sit there all night writing ridiculous things like, “Still have green gumdrops stuck in my teeth”. Wow, cue the Breaking News music and animation!

Tweeting is for many, not for me.

Happy 4th and Thanks

So I’m sitting here on my day off, enjoying the 4th watching the ballgame…(yes, I do watch the games when I’m off)…and I was genuinely affected by the mid-7th inning singing of God Bless America…that’s because the Yankees chose to honor 5 soldiers who’d served our country and named them individually before Ronan Tynan did his thing…

It’s moments like that that remind me, and hopefully all of us, of the daily sacrifices that men and women like them…and let’s not forget their families…make to ensure our way of life.  
Let’s be honest…we’ve seen our share of down times recently…greed and avarice changing the way we live our lives…but that’s done nothing to change our spirit…the belief that the United States of America is far more than just a big piece of real estate and what we have in terms of possessions.
It’s about who we are as people…that instead of just accepting the down times, we challenge ourselves to fight back (like the Yankees this year?) and ensure that this country continues to be the greatest land of freedom and opportunity in the world.  And the most beautiful…America the Beautiful.
Maybe that’s something as small as choosing not to drop a gum wrapper on the ground or not to throw a soda cup out a car window…(unfortunately, I’ve seen both recently)…maybe it means “going green”…recycling…or doing something as big as cleaning up a neighborhood or a baseball field…(check out harlemdiamond.org)…Maybe it’s helping a friend or neighbor do that.
Maybe it’s just giving time to an organization like Johnny Damon’s favorite, The Wounded Warrior Project…(woundedwarriorproject.org)…or making a donation to ALS research, which is MLB’s focus today.  Or maybe it’s just holding a door open for someone and smiling, or saying “Have a great day.”
Or maybe it’s saying a sincere “Thanks” to one of our soldiers, or buying them a cup of coffee, or picking up their tab…or all of the above.  Because if it weren’t for them…and I’m talking ALL of them, from WWI to present day…we might live in a very different country…one in which the liberty to write what I just wrote would not even be allowed.
And if you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading this entire entry and allowing me a chance to veer from the usual Blob to something very different.  Have a great day and a great weekend.