- Faith and Fear in Flushing - http://www.faithandfearinflushing.com -

If Your Train's On Time, Then You Prob'ly Lost By Nine

Couldn't leave well enough alone, could I? Couldn't sit back and enjoy Monday night's walkoff walk, watch Tuesday's date dissolve to debacle on TV and test out our new remote control by finding something else to stare at after Scott Schoeneweis did his level worst. No, I had to take my buddy Jim up on his last-minute invitation to another Mets-Cubs game.

First I didn't want to go because I was tired. Then I remembered I like to go to Mets games, especially with Jim. Then I decided my initial hesitation was a good thing because so often in my life it's the games I trudge to reluctantly that turn into all-time revelations [1]. Then I decided I was blowing the possibility of that occurring by remembering that it could. Then I decided that since I was conscious that I may have jinxed myself that maybe I had made peace with the jinx and everything would work out for the best.

Then John Maine didn't have a thing (he's entitled) and his offense, save for Shawn Green (whose GREEN 20 I was unironically representing in the right field mezz), had even less and it was Cubs 10 Mets 1, the score no indication of how close this game wasn't.

And to think contests co-starring Floyd and Zambrano used to be good news at Shea Stadium.

Get a blowout, especially the wrong kind of blowout [2], and your consolation prize is tens of thousands clearing out and providing you an unobstructed path to Woodside. Monday night I barely reached the 10:43. Tuesday night brought me, by a hair, to the 10:18. I'd rather have the hasslesome commute and long schlep necessitated by a win than the relative glide home a loss facilitates, but when the Mets don't cooperate with the big picture, you take what you can get.

The hardy souls who remained with us to the humid conclusion (felt 30 degrees warmer 24 hours later [3]) were in dire need of distraction. I suppose the Cubs fans were satisfied to monitor the tack-on runs that followed Aramis Ramirez's death blow, but this time I barely noticed them. Jim and I were spectators to a Section 25 contretemps among dozens of Mets fans and a small clutch of…yeech, Yankees fans.

Except for the company and the opponent, this was an exact replay of a scenario from pre-Subway Series week nine years ago, the Yankee fan dopes pointing at their caps and shirts, Mets fans reminding them, correctly, how much they Suck, Yankees fans using different fingers, somebody flinging popcorn or something harmless, one reluctant security guard sort of, kind of asking what's going on and lots more PG-13 chanting.

It was more annoying than entertaining. It would have been entertaining if we weren't losing a National League game by a significant margin and dipping back into second place. It's semi-understandable, this desire to repeatedly remind the pointing morons where they can stick their digits given who will be polluting our park this weekend, but better to let the bats downstairs do the talking starting Friday, y'know?

One other y'know on the topic: Y'know, my blood pressure rises more points than are in Carlos Delgado's batting average when I see a Yankees cap at Shea Stadium, but I've worn my Mets cap to ballparks elsewhere on this continent, even if the Mets aren't playing there, so all right. It's obnoxious when it's a Yankees cap at Shea, but it resides on the outer edges of acceptable fan behavior. But what's with the wearing of a Yankee jersey to a Mets-Cubs game at Shea?

Maybe it's my own code of ethics or my finely honed personal fashion sense at work, but I believe uniform tops should be saved for when your team is playing. During the current series, Mets uniform tops are appropriate. Cubs uniform tops, as unappealing as they are in context, are permissible. But WTF's with Yankee uniform tops at a non-Yankees game? That's just asking to be told how much you and your team Suck. That and the pointing and the fact that your team is in Chicago waiting out a rain delay and you should be home or in a bar watching YES or lying in a gutter clutching a transistor radio and believing everything John Sterling and Suzyn Waldman tell you about how wonderful you and your team are.

I thought maybe the Skankophiles were on hand because this was a seven-pack game and seven-packs have been known to attract rabble; that was the case in 1998 when I witnessed a near brawl between Mets fans and Yankees fans during a Mets-Orioles game. But Jim informed me that this particular seven-pack to which he's party was themed to the Home Opener and there is no Subway Series game included. This means somebody who doesn't like the Mets and (presumably) has no interest in the Cubs went to the trouble of a) attending a Mets-Cubs game and b) dressing like a Yankee to do so.

We may obsess on them to an unhealthy degree but tell me there's not something terribly wrong with them.