Saturday, September 1, 2012

Tales of Public Transportation on Labor Day Weekend

This is a two part story about my bus trip the other day from Boston to the Cape:

Part 1:  A minute before the bus started boarding, the lady in front of me in line asked if I would "watch her bag for a second."  I said "OK," and she ran off.  But then the line started to move, and fast.  About 30 seconds later I had to make a decision.

So what was my moral obligation here?  If it was moving slowly I would have dragged her suitcase alongside me for a bit.  But there was no way I was going to bring it on the bus with me.  I left it exactly where it was.  In my defense, I did continue to "watch" it as I boarded.  There was a brief moment when the bag was just sitting there looking like a bomb in the middle of the terminal.  But then she returned and everything worked out fine.

Part 2:  The guy in the seat in front of me spent half of the trip talking on his phone in a language I didn't understand.  Some other people got pissed and asked him to stop, but it appeared he didn't understand English.  When he finally finished talking he then began to watch TV on his phone, also in some foreign language; with the sound turned up and no headphones (despite the fact that the driver tells you not to, it should also just be common sense to know these things are unacceptable behavior).  More people got mad and asked him to turn it off, but he couldn't seem to find the volume switch on his phone.  Not only that, but this guy was wearing a bicycle helmet the entire time he was on the bus.  Seriously.


Friday, August 31, 2012

It's still summer, right?

I was in CVS today and saw this:

Then my next stop was a liquor store, where I encountered this:

An entire shelf of pumpkin and Halloween beers.  What the crap!?  It's not even September!

That's all for today, but go read my Sox vs A's "time to let the kiddies play" series preview for CLNS Radio.


Thursday, August 30, 2012

This Clemens comeback is oddly intriguing.

I'm eerily excited by the return of a 50 year old Clemens.
Last night Roger Clemens announced that he will take the mound again for the Sugarland Skeeters, on Friday, September 7th.  The first time he pitched I was just curious to see if he could still throw, or if he would embarrass himself.  Well, he can still throw.  And now I want to see how far he can take it.

I've pretty much been anti-Clemens since 1993, when he followed up an All-Star campaign (18-11, 2.41 ERA) with an absolute dud, going 11-14 with a 4.46 ERA.  After 9 great seasons in a Red Sox uniform (152-72, 2.80 ERA combined), he tortured us with what at best can only be described as 4 years of mediocrity (between '93 and '96 he was 40-39 with a 3.77 ERA) before moving on to Toronto, New York, and Houston where he pitched spectacularly for 10 more years (from 1997-2006 he was 156-67 with a 3.17 ERA).  He then went back to the Yankees for one final season to really stick it to Boston.  But for some inexplicable reason, I am fascinated by his return.  It doesn't make any sense.  I don't understand why.

I can't wait to watch what he does a week from tomorrow.  And then I want it to continue.  The Houston Astros are a joke this year.  They've got nothing to lose; and enormous media exposure, a nationally televised game, and ticket/concession/jersey sales to gain.  Their last home game is Wednesday, September 26th against the St. Louis Cardinals.  I'd like to see Roger Clemens start it.


Wednesday, August 29, 2012

I need YOU to help me today.

It's late august, and is feeling the effects of summer.  There's not a lot going on in the sports world; and most people are outside enjoying the nice weather instead of sitting at their computers reading about things like why this year's USA Basketball team was better than the 1992 "Dream Team." 
Take a break from summer today.

So here's what I ask of you: Get one person to visit this site who never has before.  A coworker, a friend, a relative, the little Asian lady giving you a pedicure; anybody.  Maybe have them read one of the "Recycle Sunday" posts, they've got something for everyone.  That and follow @LucidSportsFan on twitter or like the LucidSportsFan facebook page if you haven't already.

Also this season I will be covering the Celtics for CLNS Radio.  One of the things I'll be doing from time to time is compiling a list of daily Celtics news links from around the web; here's my first.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Awesome Old Song of the Week: "Two Princes" by the Spin Doctors

The guy from the Spin Doctors.
In the spring of 1993, Two Princes may have been my favorite song.  At the beach last week I stumbled on it while scrolling through my ipod, and decided to give it a play.  Then it randomly came on the radio in the car as I was driving home; weird how stuff like that happens.  

Almost 20 years later, looking back at the height of the Spin Doctors popularity, one lasting image stands out in my head.  At the time the band's lead singer looked exactly like USA soccer star Alexi Lalas.

Alexi Lalas


Monday, August 27, 2012

What's the most fun sporting event to attend?

View of the grounds from the top of Arthur Ashe Stadium.
People often asked me what my favorite sporting event to go to is, and the answer always surprises them: the U.S. Open.  And it's not because I'm a huge tennis fan or anything.  I'd rather go to a Celtics NBA Finals game (or see the Red Sox in the World Series, Bruins in the Stanley Cup, Pats in the Superbowl etc.) than attend a championship match at the Open.  In fact, at the U.S. Open I prefer not going to big matches.  What makes it so great is all the stuff you can see outside of the main center court stadium.

First of all, it's basically just one giant outdoor party.  There's bars and food vendors all over the place; even if you never see a minute of tennis you can have a good time walking around and hanging out enjoying a nice summer day.  If you go early on in the tournament there are matches being played all over the place on 17 different courts.  Because most people watch what's happening in the stadiums, you can often see some excellent players from just a few feet away on the side courts.  All you have to do is stroll right up and grab a seat in the bleachers next to the court.  And when you get tired of one match, you can just make your way over to another.  Usually I'll just watch bits and pieces of several different matches.

And it goes all day.  Play begins at 11 am, and lasts long into the evening.  They sell separate "night session" tickets to Arthur Ashe stadium, but if you're already on the grounds you don't have to leave; you can stick around and watch as long as they are still going on the outlying courts.  Throughout the day there's also players practicing on any number of side courts, usually with next to nobody there.

Oh yeah, and if you want you can always read what it says on your ticket, go to your seat, and just watch from the stands like you do at other sporting events.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Which would you rather watch?

The bar I work in has two TV's, one at each end.  Several times over the last few weeks I haven't even bothered to put the Red Sox game on, and nobody noticed or complained.  Last night I had the Sox on one TV, and 50 year old Roger Clemens pitching for the Sugarland Skeeters on the other.  This led to a humorous interaction with an older couple who came to the bar.

As soon as they sat down the guy said "Why is this on instead of the Red Sox?"  There was a hint of aggression in the tone of his voice, and I did not care for it.  It's a totally normal reaction to feel that way if you don't like what's on TV in a bar (I do all the time), but that is not an appropriate thing to say to the bartender.  Instead he should have asked something along the lines of "Would you mind changing this television to the Red Sox game?"  His question put me into sarcastic/obnoxious bartender mode, so I responded "I thought the Sox season ended last week?"  They were not amused.  The women looked at me dead seriously and said, "No, I think they are playing Kansas City."

I'm not a Clemens fan, but he was more entertaining than the Sox.
At this point I laughed and said "I know.  I have the Red Sox on the other TV (pointing 15 feet to the left).  This is Roger Clemens pitching for a minor league team.  I thought it was more interesting."  Again, without a hint of amusement in her voice, she replied "It's not."

Now I'm as big a Sox fan as anyone.  If this was the season opener, a playoff game, or really anything other than a meaningless late season game playing out the string, I would have agreed with them.  But come on lady; get off your high horse and lighten up.  So I walked over to the other bartender, told him the story, made fun of them for a bit, waited a few minutes, then changed the channel.

Oh, and for the record, the Red Sox blew a 9-3 lead and lost 10-9 in twelve innings.  Clemens pitched 3.1 scoreless innings while throwing in the high 80's, struck out two, gave up just one hit, and didn't walk anyone.  You be the judge.


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