Thanks to all who delved into the Faith and Fear archives so swiftly and accurately to take part in our contest. First in with all twenty correct answers was Ben Muschel, taking a break from watching The West Wing for the first time to scoop up The New York Mets Essential Games of Shea Stadium, the six-DVD set graciously provided to us by A&E Home Entertainment (and well worth checking out).
Readers were asked to search for and read over some FAFIF posts dating back to 2005 and report back on the flotsam and Metsam that constructed the Shea Stadium experience for this correspondent. You could go to Baseball-Reference or Retrosheet or Ultimate Mets for game details, but I figured it would be more fun (and challenging) to track down what didn’t show up in the boxscore. It is these little experiences that made going to Shea the phenomenon it was for all Mets fans. In this final week of the final calendar year of Shea Stadium, I appreciate anew that you all have shared it with me as often as you have.
What’s that? What are the answers? Those follow here.
1. At which stop — which I took as maybe a sign of what we could look forward to — did Jason’s and my 7 train stall after the game of April 22, 2005?
BLISS STREET (also known as 46th Street)
2. What are the three identities Kaz Ishii assumed for five innings in the game of June 10, 2005 before spending a few minutes on the basepaths?
3. Which pitcher was identified by the Eight Men Out-minded narrator as a knucklehead after the game of July 2, 2005?
MOTA (Guillermo, that is; the narrator, by the by, is Jose Offerman)
4. What proved to me that the Kosher hot dog stand beat Nathan’s during the game of July 20, 2005?
5. Willie Randolph Bobblehead Day took place on September 18, 2005. Name the other five promotional Days the Mets held that very same day.
6. Identify the Pirate whose foul ball grazed my thumb during the game of July 3, 2006.
7. What did some dude draw on the front of a plain white t-shirt on the occasion of Jose Lima’s start of May 7, 2006?
A CLOCK (with “LIMA TIME!” on the back)
8. A raspy yeller in a Wright shirt sat in my section on September 24, 2006. What call and response did she initiate during a brief shower?
9. What specifically did Professor Reyes earn his doctorate in during the game of August 6, 2006?
10. What, according to me, required a pass from the fans attending the game of June 16, 2006, and why was that pass required?
11. What bopped around with glee and dropped out of sight to jeers before reappearing magically during the game of April 14, 2007?
12. Who sat nearby my friend Dan’s seats in Loge on August 12, 2007?
THE PORKPIE-HATTED GUY WHO HOLDS THOSE WIDE BELIEVE SIGNS (who, incidentally, lives nearby me, as I discovered on Ralph Kiner Night when we were waiting for the same train to Woodside and he was bemoaning the loss of a local tavern to somebody with a can of beer in a brown paper bag)
13. Despite my Shea kitsch tolerance level running extraordinarily high, what item did I note I could do without after the game of May 14, 2007?
14. By whose royal graces did Jake Peavy leave the game of August 22, 2007?
15. September 10, 2007 was Citi Night; what did the yelling guy a couple of rows behind me yell relative to that designation?
“WE’RE NOT CLIENTELE!” (which is something many will be bellowing toward the gates of Citi Field soon enough, I suppose)
16. A loopy woman sitting behind me during the game of May 31, 2008 had her vocal cords obviously fused together with what?
17. Once the 2008 Mets vaulted themselves into legitimate contention, what did I mention, following the game of September 23, 2008, I could I forget about turning Shea Stadium into during its final month?
18. Given the Chicago accent of the guy sitting behind me during the game of August 23, 2008, what specifically did I expect a call for?
19. Fans expressed their displeasure with the playing of “Sweet Caroline” during the game of April 12, 2008. What was the overbearing New England mainstay to whose turn of fortunes I compared it?
CORRUPT WARDEN SAMUEL NORTON (from The Shawshank Redemption; he stuck a pistol in his mouth once the authorities grew wise to him)
20. Given that the Mets were losing 9-0 in the night portion of the Subway Series two-ballpark doubleheader of June 27, 2008, what couldn’t turn Jim and me back into the Sunshine Boys we’d been before 8:10?