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Jason Fry and Greg Prince
Faith and Fear in Flushing made its debut on Feb. 16, 2005, the brainchild of two longtime friends and lifelong Met fans.

Greg Prince discovered the Mets when he was 6, during the magical summer of 1969. He is a Long Island-based writer, editor and communications consultant. Contact him here.

Jason Fry is a Brooklyn writer whose first memories include his mom leaping up and down cheering for Rusty Staub. Check out his other writing here.

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Stick Your Head Out

I want you to get up right now, sit up, go to your windows, open them and stick your head out and yell…

The Mets have run the Howard Beale clip from Network on DiamondVision for, I think, the last eight seasons. I don't have a handle on the success rate in terms of rallies and runs that stem from its still-clever-if-tired segue into the LET'S GO METS! chant, but it seems to get the fans going.

Peter Finch's contextless rant from almost 30 years ago is as good a limb as any on which to hang the Mets' marvelous home record. Even with Sunday's flopfest, they're 40-25 at Shea. That's a 100-win season if we could bribe Bud Selig to let us play all our games at home (and you know we probably could if we really tried). If it's not Network, maybe it's the landing pattern into LaGuardia or the mysterious wind swirls or the orange onslaught the opposition experiences from the unfilled field level seats. Whatever it is, we have a definite home-field advantage.

And we are helpless on the road. I won't re-enumerate the examples of our terrible tourism except to say that the Mets are 23-35 away from Shea. That's a 64-win season if our enemies could bribe Bud Selig to make us play all our games on the road (and you know they probably could if they really tried). Obviously there's something missing from road games that is present at home games that is causing the Mets' performance to drop so dramatically when on a business trip.

I don't think it's Howard Beale. I don't think it's the airplanes. I don't think it's the breeze or the colors or even the absence of friendly, feral cats.

It's the fans. It's what Mets fans bring to Shea. It's what the most full-throated Mets fans do at Shea that apparently spurs the Mets on to greater heights.

The love…the support…the educated and instinctive rushing to the aid of the home team…

Nah, that's not it.

It's the booing. It has to be.

What is more constant at Shea Stadium than the chorus of Mets fans telling the Mets all they are doing wrong? I don't know what it says about our boys, but obviously they respond to abuse. 40-25 can't be an aberration.

With the Mets in Arizona all week, it will take some doing. With San Francisco the next stop, it will take a little more. But I know we have it in us. So let's do this together, all of us.

Inhale deeply.

Concentrate.

Get your lungs and your mind in a place where they can work in tandem and do the most good.

Ready? All right, then.

I want you to get up right now, sit up, go to your windows, open them and stick your head out and yell…

HEY METS! YOU SUCK!

BOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!

GO BACK TO YOUR PREVIOUS TEAM OR TEAMS!

YOUR FAILURE TO PRODUCE VICTORY AT EVERY POSSIBLE OPPORTUNITY RELECTS BADLY ON MY SENSE OF SELF!

YOU PITCHERS SUCK FOR NOT RETIRING EACH BATTER IN AN EFFICIENT AND TIMELY FASHION!

YOU HITTERS SUCK FOR NOT MOVING RUNNERS OVER, DRIVING THEM IN AND/OR DRIVING YOURSELF IN AT THE SAME TIME!

YOU FIELDERS SUCK FOR NOT ACHIEVING A STATE OF INFALLIBILITY!

HEY WILLIE — YOU USE YOUR PLAYERS IN IMPROPER COMBINATIONS AND NOT AT OPTIMAL FREQUENCY!

YOUR SUCCESSES ARE NOT CONTINUOUS! YOU OFTEN ALTERNATE VICTORIES AND DEFEATS IN RATIOS THAT ARE UNPLEASING!

I PREFER VICTORY AND ABHOR DEFEAT! GIVE ME WHAT I WANT!

TRY YOUR BEST! IF THAT'S NOT GOOD ENOUGH, TRY HARDER!

BE REPLACED BY OTHER, BETTER PLAYERS AT ONCE!

BOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!! YOU SUCK, METS!

There. Now that we've made the Mets feel at home while they're on the road, good things are sure to follow.

5 comments to Stick Your Head Out

  • Anonymous

    Just so you all know I put my karma where my mouth is, I booed at the start of Monday night's game.

  • Anonymous

    Well, since you mentioned it, I will out Jason and say that he is still trying to regain his voice after the booing he gave Braden Looper on Saturday night. It was possibly loud enough for Looper to even hear him. It was, I will also say, richly deserved. (And I booed right along with him.) We didn't boo Graves or Koo, though we did try to boo Omar Minaya for continuing to keep them on the roster, but by the time Looper arrived to give up the final two runs, we had had enough. Also, it IS supposed to be his job to guard a by-then slim two-run lead. Of course, it all turned out ok, thanks to Chris Woodward. But at the time it felt very, very wrong.

  • Anonymous

    Sounds like chants fans of the Kobe Fishheads might utter were they so distraught from ineffective play that they were willing to forego the usual Japanese decorum and really get into ripping their team.
    “Most honorable umpire, I find your eyesight and decision making abilities to be lacking in accuracy in the extreme. Most humble apologies for your ineptitude”.

  • Anonymous

    Gee, thanks, honey. Yeah, I'll admit it: I booed the shit out of Looper. And paid for it — I actually felt something give in my throat. Hurt like hell.
    There's been a lot of talk about the crowd at this game — people told Lisa Olson of the Daily News that there were racial/ethnic taunts tossed at Graves, Koo and Heilman. Emily and I didn't hear any of that where we were, thank goodness — our neighbors included jubilant flag-wavers and frat-boy drunks, but they never crossed the line from boisterous to problematic. Regardless, here's hoping the Mets investigate, though I doubt any of us think they will.
    I was interested to see how various Mets would be received, given their past failings. Graves and Koo were greeted with indifference, Heilman with mild approval, and Looper with muttering. Poor Matsui was of course booed just for showing up.
    I'm not all that disturbed by the Shea booing of players before they even throw/swing at a pitch, though I do think it's childish and counterproductive. Still, my wife's shot at Omar gives me a semi-serious idea: Why not introduce the starting lineup “as brought to you by the Mets general manager…Omar Minaya!” Then people could boo the man they're really mad at, instead of hapless stand-ins. Don't think Kaz should be on the roster? Boo Omar. Think Graves and Koo are overdue for an exit? Boo Omar. Tired of Offerman and Ice? Boo Omar.
    I know, it'd never happen. But I do recall (Greg may remember the specifics) some pregame ceremony in which Steve Phillips was announced, and people were practically falling out of the upper deck in their eagerness to boo a normally out-of-reach target.
    I'm booing Steve Phillips right now, in fact. Coworkers are staring at me, but I don't care. It feels good.
    And when I'm done, I'm gonna boo Torborg.

  • Anonymous

    Well, there were a couple of chants of “We want Pedro” in the 9th and 10th. Unfortunately the game's rules made that impossible, tho I'm sure Pedro would have been thrilled to return to finish off a game his bullpen friends were having trouble with. Still, it hardly seemed like a racial issue. More disgust at poor baseball. And who can't sympathize with that?