7/26/08 – Smooth as an Old Shoe in NYC

Back in NYC and starting to feel like a native. Not that I’m really fooling anyone, I’m just not that smooth. But Jackie found us a really smooth Soho hotel so I can fake it for a while. That’s until you take in the view from our first-floor suite and realize that there’s not much of to overlook – some moldy concrete that the staffers tried to spruce up with potted plants. I call it the “grotto.” That’s smooth-ish

Yesterday was a crazy day. Our publicist, Jen, had us working like well-oiled machines. To White Plains to meet with JimmyV, then to CW11 to interview with
Continue reading

7/17/08 – All-Star Blunder?

Hey, I’m pretty easy-going about things. Especially sports. As I’ve said over-and-over again in interviews, writing a baseball book isn’t like curing world hunger. Now, there was certainly a day when I cared deeply about sports: when I played soccer as a kid. I was never one to cry over a loss but I was the type to play the game over and over again in my head – wins and losses.

And I still do…For example, my daughter came home from camp yesterday and said she met a friend named Joanne. “Really?. . . Joanne,” I thought. Oddly, I immediately teleport myself back to a soccer game during my junior year in high school. The game had gone into sudden-death overtime and I was called off-sides just as my teammate, Joanne Duymovic – one of the best athletes I’ve ever Continue reading

6/30/08 – Detroit Driver Takes on Boston

At the risk of sounding like Rainman, I’m a pretty good driver. My high school Drivers Ed class took place on the D.C. Beltway and I was weaned at age 16 on the NJ Turnpike while driving my mom to Cape Cod. So, I’m pretty hard-core. No slouch. I like to drive really fast but, honestly, that’s pretty much the depth of my talent. It’s that realization that I don’t have the total package that drives me to hand the wheel over to Jackie. Jackson. Jack-o-rama. She’s a true pro. Raised in Detroit, the Motor City Girl rolls with the big boys and I’m in awe.

What makes a good driver? Well, among many other things like knowing how to jam an inferior engine in order to make an 80 MPH merge, a good driver sees getting lost as no cause for alarm. The answer is always just to keep driving. Continue reading

6/27/08 – Disney or Bust… Busted toes that is

Up until now the worst part of my week was a need of so many Bandaids for my calloused feet that finally I had to dip into my kids’ SpongeBob stash. But now my week of planes, trains and automobiles has caught up with me and I’m trapped in the Baltimore Airport (BWI) trying to get to Boston for our Jimmy Fund event at Fenway Park. Jackie lovingly planned out our flights so we’d arrive into Boston (her from Detroit) within 15 minutes of each other. Now, my plane is scheduled to depart 40 minutes after I was supposed to arrive. Strike that, 70 minutes. (My ETA changes by the minute). This stinks. But my nasty temperament is tempered when I noticed a beleaguered GI sitting on the floor across from me, still donning fatigues. OK, my life doesn’t suck. Don’t be such a brat, D.

Certainly, not all was lost this week. My last childless “last hurrah” came by way of a game Wednesday at Nationals Park (thanks Bree!). I drank with Scott from Connecticut on the train ride between NYC and D.C.(but then he ditched me in Balt, some lame excuse about a conference…). The game was followed by a late Italian dinner in D.C.’s Dupont Circle — my old stomping ground. See, after the Iron Chef gig, my kids and the AGPs (Awesome Grandparents) took off for the much-anticipated Disney cruise. I saw them for all of about 36 hours after arriving from NYC but it was still totally worth it. I mean, when your kids are fighting over who gets to sleep with you, that’s pretty much all that matters. So neither was really left hanging, I snuggled in with both. Thought any parent knows that’s where the fun ends. At about 3AM I finally had to evacuate the bed because the kids had taken over with their delightfully pointed knees and elbows.

So, with the kids safe with Mickey Mouse, I eventually moved on…to bid adieu to Barb and Matthias who are leaving NYC for Germany and to Philadelphia to see Dr. Steve and his baseball card collection. Again, that’s an colossal understatement. I was more than a little naïve – and, as was soon revealed, quite ill-informed — about baseball card collecting. Not sure if it was daft politeness, sheer aloofness, or just plain exhaustion but I never took any notes as Dr. Steve rattled off the relevance of card after card. Dammit! I’d lost focus! Still, I understood the significance of holding the Honus Wagner T206, even though it was encased in a cassette of hard plastic. Ditto for the Ty Cobb cards, the Walter Johnson rookie card, Joe Jackson… I could go on. And may, another day.

After the viewing we took off to see the Phillies play the LA Angels of Anaheim (stupid stupid stupid name). We ate a hot dog and stayed the whole nine. I got little rest and was back at the stadium the next morning to meet some friends only to be poured into a cab to catch the train to Atlantic City, where I spent the next two days, ate an amazing steak meal, snoozed on the beach and got my first real sunburn of the summer.

Then back to NYC to meet Editor Mark and take in a game at Shea. At this point I decided to take a photo of tickets from all the games I attended, thus far – knowing that there were two more during this trip: DC and NYY. See the photo of the tickets? Email me if you can find the problem with these tickets. I hadn’t even really noticed it until a moment ago. Brain mush.

He and I had a ball. The Mets had run into the buzz saw known as the Seattle Mariners, losing 11-0. Afterwards I headed back to my apartment on 28th Ave in Chelsea, which I managed to destroy in only a few hours. As I walked out from the 34th Ave Times Square Subway I called my brother to chat, make sure the animals were alive, etc. We laughed, talked and laughed. I looked up in time to realize I’d gone about 30 blocks out of my way: I was on 58th Ave. So I turned around and walked back to 28th, stopping for dinner at a Korean BBQ. I walked home alone at 1:30AM, feeling just a little creepy about being so brazen. And my feet had taken the brunt. I’m sure I would have succumbed to an attacker rather than run on my blistered and tired dogs.

6/20/08 – Iron Chef Groupie, Dave “Hendu” Henderson

A good start to the week of insane travel, I’d say. Jackie and I being invited to speak at a baseball caucus with slugger Dave Henderson. He rightfully showed off his World Series ring (1989 Oakland) while five of us gawked and gathered over lunch. His candor entertained us with clubhouse stories and was honest enough to dispel more than a few rumors. I could have talked to him all day. The speaking engagement was a ball and we sold lots of books. Not to say that’s all that matters, of course, but it was a nice perk. They were a great group. They were enthusiastic and laughed at my jokes. (They laughed harder at Jackie’s).

Since then, Jackie has traversed the Great Plains – or, whatever. I’m sticking with it because it sounds fully nostalgic – from Seattle to Detroit via car. Me? I took the easy way with a direct redeye flight to New York City. This was the beginning of a weeklong Bandaid crisis because everyone knows that you need an artillery of bandaids when you plan to walk the streets of NYC, as I did. Anyway, I never know when I’m gonna need some extra cash.

My redeye took me directly to the 9AM taping of the Food Network’s Iron Chef where my friend, Sabrina, was the day’s challenger. I signed a confidentially agreement so don’t ask me who won unless you have $1M burning a whole in your pocket that you’re willing to hand over. The most difficult part was that I was ravenous from my sleepless redeye and they were making some really good food. Really, it could have sucked. I was starving. The taping lasted until 2PM. “Pietro,” I said, desperately grabbing the arm of Sabrina’s husband. “If I don’t have a glass of wine in my hand in 30 minutes, I’m going to get really bitchy.”

Thirty minutes later I had a full glass of wine. But just not any glass of wine. I was seated in a fine Chelsea restaurant that is rumored to be co-owned by Iron Chef Mario Batali. We were directed there by one of the Iron Chef judges that Pietro had befriended– evidently during the time period that I had slipped into hypoglycemic shock. As the judge, himself, poured my wine, I looked around our intimate table-for-ten. There was a table for ten of us: family members, old friends of the family, the publicist, her sous chefs … and me. Yikes! I felt like such a groupie. But I ate, drank and was merry. I was probably the “happiest” of all because I was thoroughly jetlagged – and I felt charmed because I didn’t belong anywhere near that table and its eight elegant courses – very little of which I can remember. Well, that’s other than the lard butter laced with rosemary – wow. I was so happy, in fact, that I made an executive decision to “miss” my train to DC. That was my ultimate destination because I wanted to see my kids, Amelia and Tony (7 and 6) , before they left for a Disney cruise with my dad and stepmom. Their dad (aka Michael) had brought them out the week before and then “aka Michael” headed to North Carolina for a golf tournament. Truth be known, during that post Iron Chef meal, I was so taken with the Life of Riley that I doubted I’d see my kids until they turned 13. But, alas, I pushed the table away. As if! There was still the champagne course. I’m was brought up properly, after all. Then, when all was right in the world, I left. Mother would be proud.

6/7/08 – HELL HATH NOT THE FURY (OR THE BALLS) TO CANCEL A LADIES DAY EVENT

I woke up and checked the weather forecast on-line. The most favorable reports called for thunderstorms starting around 3:30, when Jackie and I were scheduled to set up for our Nationals Ladies Day event. Ugh. I refreshed my screen, hoping for better news. Same thing. Rain. Thunderstorms. At least there were no tornado warnings, like the day before. But who wudda thunk it? The event went off without a hitch. We felt charmed, as did the event organizers, our new best friends.

Early in the day we decided to make the best of what everyone was telling us was quickly turning into a bad weather situation. Jackie read that the rained-out Nats game from the previous, stormy night was scheduled for 1PM. Heck, we thought, it was such a beautiful day “let’s watch two!” (as paraphrased from Ernie Banks). We rushed around my dad’s house, got ourselves together and missed the shuttle to the subway. So we leaned on my dad to drive us, which he kindly did. A father’s work is never done, is it? So we leaned on my dad to drive us, which he kindly did. A father’s work is never done, is it?… As the subway shot us underneath all the museums, statues and monuments, I felt badly for Jackie who, again, hadn’t seen D.C. for twenty years. Guess this just wasn’t her day, either. First I take the window seat on the airplane . . . now this. How long can I keep the city a secret from her? From my dad’s pad in Rockville, it took us 40 minutes to make it down to the ballpark via the “Metro” – or, the “subway.” It was so cool to walk out from the tunnel to see the entrance to the Nats centerfield only a block away.

We discussed how we were going to be all ballsy and scalp tickets again, a la our glorious experience in Philly. Here we were, poised to scalp. We were cocky. We were prepared. We counted our cash. We went in. What? No scalpers? What kind of bush-league outfit are they running, here? OK, OK, I didn’t really mean that, you know, being a native Washingtonian, myself. But… really! So we bought tickets at the box office. B-O-R-I-N-G.

Since the game was a quickie rain ticket, the stadium was empty and Jackie and I just walked around and around, never making it to our $18 seats. Again, as in Philly, we were amazed that they served booze in the ballpark. We bought some items at the team store, namely a Teddy Roosevelt doll for my daughter (to accompany the Philly Phanatic doll I got my son earlier in the week).

After the Nationals lost the first game, we found our table and began setting up. My dad and stepmom, Marion, were on-hand bringing around our supplies and taking some pictures. We ducked into the port-o-potties and got ourselves presentable which is really pretty difficult in a port-o-potty that has been stuck sucking up ninety degree heat all day. I’m not sure that we succeeded because while a rep for Mary Kay Cosmetics – a vendor booth near ours – was talking to us she said she couldn’t “stand to watch” us put on our makeup and just had to walk away. However, they kept checking on us, telling us to stop by. Yikes. I didn’t think we looked that bad.

The day was wonderful. The Nationals event planners had it all figured out (or at least it seemed as much). We have been working with them for a long time and Bree, Katherine, Christine and Sydney had things working like clockwork. I even wrote an article for the Nationals June/July program. It is about women fans and the sordid history that is the backdrop to any Ladies Day event (click for .pdf article.)

As often as we’ve done this sort of thing, we still get excited at the hundreds of people starting to line-up to get into the event. It was Ryan Zimmerman bobblehead night and the check-in table was filled with bobbleheads for the Ladies Nights attendees – men and women – to grab. Attractions were a wine bar, jewelry sales, massage chairs, a fun lingerie line called Slumber Party and, as you know, Mary Kay. All the vendors were supportive and fun as they walked around before the event checking out the wares others had to offer. Good Party!

Dad and Marion were in charge with helping us keep track of what we were doing, whether it was getting us drinks, snapping photos or making change for people buying our books. The DJ was spinning some fine tunes as the party of 600 or so danced under a tent by the first base entrance. Even the mascots made an appearance – two of the presidents (Teddy and I think it was George, though he looked like Thomas Jefferson – Abe is easy to pick out) and Screech, the bald eagle – were out whooping it up..

Afterward, Jackie and slipped into our own post-event coma with a couple amazing tickets in the Nats “Diamond Club.” We had a couple drinks, a hot dog and some good conversation, though, mainly, I was staring at a point somewhere in centerfield. Glad I snapped to it when Elijah Dukes (of an anger-management post I wrote a year ago, among other things…) hit the walk-off home run in the bottom of the 10th.

Not only was the event a huge success for us and for the Nationals, it was a great deal of fun. And not a drop of rain. Who wudda thunk it?

6/5/08 – Pre-summer Slump is No Match For Dunkin’ Donuts

A violent storm rocked the D.C area Wednesday, leveling trees, cars, fences and power lines. It also practically leveled our hopes of today’s Ladies Night appearance with the Nationals, as well. Sound paranoid? Negative? Well, seven hours in the dark can drive anyone to such thoughts. More thunderstorms are expected late this afternoon. So, we’ll see.

Yesterday started with a visit to my high school, Walter Johnson, and, specifically, the journalism class, where I got my “start.” At first, we thought it was only the receptionist, but it soon became clear that the whole school was wrapped in a deep and muffled trance that accompanies the waning weeks of the school year. It struck me that every single kid is completing a monumental year – as they all are at that wonderful age — and is often anxious about what lies ahead… the whimsy of summertime… and the next school year. You remember the feeling, right? . . .

But, Jackie and I know kids and figured that even a muffled trance was likely not enough to force the students to pay attention to us. So, we plied them with two dozen donuts and patiently waited for the placating coma that follows a sugar rush. Then, we merrily wonked our way through 45 minutes.

Just kidding, kids… we were pleased that they all seemed attentive – and some even eager – as Jackie and I talked about our life as young journalists and (feeling very) old authors. We both would be delighted – and fully expect – to see your names and your words in print. You are all off to a great start, certainly with the enthusiastic guidance of Ms. Gates. Good job to you all!

I then proceed to drag Jackie though my old neighborhood – Wyngate Elementary school, and all – where we terrorized the poor man who lives in my childhood home. He hid in the upstairs bedroom and ignored the doorbell and knocks as if we were pesky vacuum cleaner salesmen. Yes, dude… we saw you shirking. So, without your permission, we took all sorts of pictures of the house. In my day, we kept the doors unlocked. And we most certainly didn’t hide from the odd passersby. Sheesh. We followed that with a visit to the mother of my childhood best friend. She let us in. Though that wasn’t always the case…

Then the storm came and, with it, away whisked any assurance that we’d be hanging with the ladies (and guys like my dad) at the National’s Ladies Night, Thursday. Jackie and I took pictures of the storm as it raged outside. We don’t get storms like that in Seattle. The bloom soon fell of that rose and we found ourselves sitting in the dark drinking beer, taking silly pictures and eating fajitas with my family.

When the lights came back on, Jackie turned on the “Red Wings game,” which also featured The Penguins. I caught the final, dramatic seconds that could have put the game into another overtime (Monday’s game had three overtimes). Instead, Detroit hoisted the trophy and I went to bed.

6/3/08 – The Tour’s Gritty Early Days

So, we’re beginning day three of the tour and if Jackie has learned nothing else, she’s learned this: keep me away from caffeine before a redeye flight. The silver lining was that there was an empty seat between us. Trying to follow a conversation with me was like trying to drink from a fire hose. But we completed about eight hours of brainstorming during the two-hour flight between Seattle and Vegas. Our plane was late and we barely made our connecting flight to D.C. This scene foreshadowed things to come — mainly the manic drive from D.C. to Philly the very next day. But, even with harbingers hovering, let’s keep up the suspense, shall we? I’ve got so little else…

The approach into National Airport was as magnificent as it was frighteningly low. Straight down the Potomac and over Georgetown University, Watergate, The Kennedy Center. Directly over the Lincoln Memorial and looked straight down the Mall to the Capitol Building with the White House and Jefferson Memorial balancing out the axis on either side of the Washington Monument. I grew up in this area and visit my family here often and never tire of looking at the monuments. Selfishly, I had taken the window seat and tried to point out stuff to Jackie, who hadn’t been to D.C. for more than twenty years. Sorry, Jackie — But that’s what you get for slipping me your Nyquil and then giving me the blow up pillow with a hole in it while I was in a weakened stupor. They look silly enough wrapped around a person’s neck while inflated, imagine how pathetic (and desperate) I looked with a flaccid pillow clinging to my shoulders with nothing but static to keep it in place? I arrived into D.C. Sunday morning with a crick in my neck. My dad and stepmom picked us up. Hi Dad! Know a good chiropractor?

After a relaxing day and dinner at my dad’s house with my Uncle Gerry, who’s not shy about mentioning his six handicap (and nor should he be – that’s golf, folks) we woke up the next morning refreshed and ready for our drive up to Philly for a 5:30 appearance on ComcastSport’s Daily News Live TV program. Afterward, we thought that we’d take in the 7PM Phillies v. Cinn game and Jackie noticed that Ken Griffey, Jr. was still aiming for #600 (home runs, folks) and that this could be his Big Night. As dad went out to fulfill his fatherly duties by filling up the car for us (he probably kicked a tire or two), Jackie got on-line to get tix for us but, instead of paying the $6-per-ticket “convenience” charge, we just figured that we’d get to Philly early and buy them at the box office before our interview. Our first misstep. We left my dad’s place at 1:30 to give us a good four hours to make the two-hour drive to Philadelphia. Our second misstep.

Rolling through my old stompin’ grounds – behind the wheel of my dad’s old Land Cruisr’ – it took me less than five minutes to get lost. Back on the road, we took I-95 through Baltimore, by Camden Yards, Fort McHenry and, surely, over a few open-air drug markets. We were cruising, making good time and mortgaging off the earnings from our next book in what was a small fortune in tolls. As soon as we hit the Delaware border – and handed over $5 for the privilege of doing so – we hit some traffic. That’s ok, I think, we’ve got two hours to make 46 miles. An hour later, we’re still in traffic and had traveled only 6 miles. Sweat ensues. Silence in the car. I’m afraid to speak, but do: “You know,” I say to Jackie, “if this doesn’t clear up within ten minutes, we aren’t going to make it.” Silence. Long pause. More silence. “I know.” What we didn’t know, however, was that it would clear up within five minutes. As soon as it did, I floored the beast and watched the needle on gas gauge slip into oblivion. Jackie called the producer who assured us that we’d make it. It was 5PM and we’d just passed Newark, Del – 38 miles away. I’m not sure what map he was looking at but he was right. I did what I was supposed to do — which is drive fast — and Jackie started changing and doing her make-up in the passenger seat. She also clicked some terrible photos of Philadelphia as we crossed the bridge into town.

We ran into the studio at 5:25 where Producer Brian was waiting for us. “See? You made it!” The same soothing soul who kept us sane on the road, assured us that we still had time to gussy up for the show and hit the make-up chair. Again, he was right. Maybe we hadn’t really made any missteps, after all. Maybe we were just being efficient.

The hosts of the show didn’t seem peeved that they were torn from their hard-hitting sports program to talk to a coupla chicks. In fact, I think they were talking about the 1983 NBA season, which ended when the 76ers swept the Lakers in the finals, in the segment before ours. And in we walk… but they were very generous with their time and the staff treated us very well. Hope they didn’t lose too many viewers.

Off we ran to the game, walking through the parking lot where fans were tailgating – sitting next to cases of Bud Light. And in full view of the police! This wouldn’t happen in Seattle, we thought. And then we said just that. Jackie was getting excited. “Let’s buy nice seats.” Didn’t need to convince me. Thus, the real coup of the day is that, as we started toward the ticket booth, we were approached by a scalper. “Need tickets? Better prices, right here.” We stalled. How could that be? “Do the Phillies have a gameday premium price at the window?” I asked (the Mariners and a few other places have that). Jackie and I had let go the $44 tickets (not including the service charges) on-line in Section 137, row 33. We were armed with information. Then I started pulling information from an article I’d recently written about scalping… I can do this. I bucked up. Hell, if I can take three scalpers out to lunch and tail seven of them for a game — finding out all their secrets – I should be the one woman on earth who is well-equipped for this transaction. “You get these from season ticket holders?” I asked. “Yes, I work with StubHub,” he said.”OK, what do you have?” Section 130, row 21. $44. He gave us the pair for $70. Again, maybe our lack of planning wasn’t really a misstep.

The Phillies Citizen Bank stadium has a very open, festival atmosphere that immediately swept us off our feet. And, when we like something, we are driven to shop and buy team merchandise, namely a Philly Phanatic doll for my son. We were even lured into the “restaurant” attached to the stadium, McFaddens, which was more beach bar than restaurant, with a few kids running about, live music and people actually smoking cigarettes. Post game, it turned into a Coyote Ugly-type scene w/ the waitresses dancing on the bar pouring drinks directly into the mouths of anxious men.

But, the game. First, no Griffey. The Comcast guys told us so we knew that going in. We took our beer and headed down to our seats, which is sooooo much better than heading up to your seats. Jackie found them and we nestled in. “Hey where’d you get these seats?” the guy next to us asked. Turns out he was the “season ticket holder.” I felt a little guilty that we got his tickets for $35 but we were very appreciative and I don’t think Dr. Steve really cared. He was there with his son and we chatted most of the game – me w/ Dr. Steve and Jackie w/ the people on the other side. Turns out Dr. Steve is a baseball memorabilia collector, which is an understatement, and we had a good time.

Game over in 8 ½ innings, 5-4. Great time. As we head out, Jackie’s thinking “Philly Cheese Steak.” Didn’t need to convince me. We go straight up Broad to Independence Hall looking for a suitable place and come up empty handed. We finally stop into a unfriendly place called the Friendly Tavern. Drink a beer and ask for a good place to get cheese steaks. It was 11PM and we had a two hour drive back to D.C. – this, we planned for. (Maybe that’s why we shouldn’t plan too much.) We were instructed to go to Geno’s to “go down, take a left, keep going for a couple blocks and then another left and a right and you’ll see it. You can walk.” OK. It’s late, we’re in Philly. We get in the car. Jackie tries to recite the directions and against all of my Portuguese blood, I listen. We ended up in an alley that was barely big enough for us to fit through. I take over. “It’s all in the ears, Jackie. The place is over here.” Eureka! I’m good for something. And we found Genos: A little slice of Vegas in the middle of Philadelphia brownstones.

The rest was pretty messy. Eating a Philly cheesesteak (with extra onions) while driving down I-95 at midnight. We got home at 2AM, giggled about our day and retired to our rooms. By morning, we had a few meaty orders (sans onions) from those who saw us on the Comcast show and a note from Dr. Steve. Not a bad take, I’d say.

5/22/08 – BASEBALL WORSHIP IS SERIOUS BUSINESS… TO SOME

Last Sunday was a big deal for my family. My daughter, Amelia, 7, got her First Communion at St. Therese Catholic Church in Seattle. Now, my husband and I never considered ourselves particularly religious – and, honestly, probably bordering on the religiously apathetic – but I’ve gone to church with my daughter just about every Sunday since January because she wanted to get Communion. I warned her… that she’d have to pony-up and start going to church…. but she was not deterred. So, I was there , too. (Father and son, 6, sleep in and watch cartoons.) Anyway, there was a party, etc., etc. she got cards and presents.

fieldofdreams.jpgWhat does all of this have to do with baseball? Well, there are many who consider baseball a religion. We’ve all probably heard that mentioned in jest. But there are those churches that have “baseball worship services.” I heard about them a while back and just decided to delve into the topic more thoroughly. And I found some pretty interesting stuff.

For starters, a decade ago there was a church in northern Georgia that narrowly averted legal action brought on by confused parishioners when the sermon revolved around baseball. This public rebuke was met with an apology from the priest in charge, who was probably equally confused. But, it’s his job to know his flock, yes? I wonder if MLB would have sent in a team of lawyers to defend the guy.

Here’s a time where the readings in a sermon adapted a passage from the book of Romans in the New Testament. The reverend used some baseball terminology: “And so, fellow teammates, I plead with you to give your team to God. Let them be willing to make a holy sacrifice–the kind deep in the outfield. When you think of what God has done for you, is this too much to ask? Don’t copy the behavior and customs of the other team, but let God transform you into a new player by changing the way you think. Then you will know what God wants you to do and you will know how good and pleasing and perfect his coaching really is.” (Romans 12:1-2 NRBV – New Revised Baseball Version)

In fact, the guy who wrote that adaptation, Rev. Larry Davies, included a portion of it in his book, Live The Light, where members of his church face-off in a game against some of the game’s iconic players.

If you have a subscription to the New York Times, you might find this article interesting (if you don’t have a subscription, you can read the beginning paragraph, which is also cool, and may entice you to get a subscription…) soccerasreligion.jpgIt is from 1912 and a church’s annual baseball worship service. Some of the New York Giants were in attendance. Probably just covering their bases. Ok. That was pretty bad. I’ll be here through Thursday, folks.

More recently, however, a writer drew comparisons to how the changes in his church are akin to the changes in how kids now like soccer over baseball (his assertion). Soccer, he said, is faster, and along with the added movement, there is more excitement. He looked at how his church could adapt and become more like soccer and less like baseball.

5/1/08: April’s been berry, berry good to me

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April was our long-awaited (by us) book launch. It was the culmination of four years of thought, execution, near-executions and family neglect. (Check out the book at www.TheSavvyGirls.com)

How did we celebrate? On April 1, release date, Jackie and I drove around Seattle and took pictures of our book in various stores. Total dorks. Thank God we found eachother.

By the end of the month, we had this great article by Doug Miller, senior writer for MLB.com. It was featured, front-and-center, on the MLB.com website.  Don’t believe us? Here’s the screen shot. I had to take it, knowing that these things are fleeting: 

MLBScreenShot.JPGThanks, Doug.  He’s a Seattle-guy, too, but likely got wind of us from our own Mark at MLB.com HQ in NYC. You both rock. Specifically, Doug’s retelling of our interview w/ a bonehead “sports reporter” was fun to read.  I blogged about the guy earlier this week in “Dark Interview in the Dark.”

This month, we also had a couple book launch parties.  Jackie’s good at many things but one thing she truly excels at is party planning.

One party included a tour of Safeco Field (my 6 y.o. son tried to pick the lock of the snack machine in the visitor’s locker room) followed by a public party at Pyramid Brewery, directly across from the stadium. The night was capped with an intimate “after party” with us standing in the rain w/ our two husbands along Seattle’s Alki Beach and cracking a bottle of Dom Perignon that Jackie and John had saved for a special moment. Glad this rated.

Then we had a more private shindig red velvet-clad “Grotto,” which is really theBLG-D&Jcake2.jpg basement of The Renezvous bar on 2nd Ave in Seattle’s hip Belltown neighborhood. Here’s me caught stealing some cake…

We are starting our book tour in a month w/ a event with the Washington Nationals on 6/5.  This is especially nice for me because it was my old stomping grounds.  Well, not exactly Southeast D.C. where the new stadium is…  (When I was a teen, we were instructed never to go to SE and, if we were ever lost there, we were encouraged to run red lights)  But, I hear “revitalization,” etc., etc. born from the Nats new park have made the place a little nicer.  I’ll see in a month and report back. 

Us and some friends at the Grotto party.


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D&J in front… w/ Dave at top far left, Tim, John (Jackie’s squeeze), Andrew (Tim’s squeeze) and Michael (D’s squeeze).  Yes, we need to find Dave a squeeze…