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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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SCOTUS SEZ LGM!

[T]his appreciation for diverse views may also come in handy as a diehard Mets fan serving alongside her new colleague-to-be, Yankees fan Justice Sotomayor  who I believe has ordered a pinstripe robe for the occasion.
—President Barack Obama, May 10, 2010

Elena Kagan has been nominated to serve as the next Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. And Elena Kagan is a Mets fan.

Let’s be nonpartisan about this. Let’s celebrate that the president’s choice to be one of nine members of the highest court in the land has already shown Amazin’ judgment. Let’s hope that if confirmed she disbars Paul Schrieber from ever umpiring again.

Can Supreme Court justices do that? She’s a Mets fan whose robe will definitely not be pinstriped. It will be Mets black, with blue and orange undertones. Constitutional parameters notwithstanding, she can do what she wants.

Bill Clinton came to Shea Stadium to retire Jackie Robinson’s number. He kept coming to coming games after he left office. The George Bushes were related to one of the Mets’ original directors, G. Herbert Walker. The first George Bush threw out of the first ball of the 1985 season to Gary Carter. The second George Bush appeared on the Shea Goodbye DVD recalling attending Spring Training at St. Pete with Uncle Herbie in 1962.

This is nonpartisan. This is about the Mets being a part of the lives of the last three presidents. Now a fourth has done more than go to a game. He’s got a Mets fan potentially making nation-altering decisions. She’s already decided to be a Mets fan, which is pretty good. We as a nation can take our chances from there.

Barack Obama is a White Sox fan. He graduated from Columbia University in 1983. I’m reading a biography of him right now that fails to include an anecdote about how, as a senior, he and a friend decided to break the tension of studying for finals by hopping on the 1 downtown to the 7 at Times Square and heading to Shea Stadium to see Tom Seaver early in his second go-round as a Met, not on Opening Day, but on a chilly April night when there were only 4,000 people in attendance. It’s not included, I’m guessing, because it never happened, but I’d like to think it did.

“It was a makeup doubleheader,” the president recalls in my fantasy passage. “Tickets were cheap, which was good, because we didn’t have much money, being students and all. Yet nobody minded that we sat in those orange seats that were always empty on TV. We could only stay for a little of the second game — had to get back to the apartment to study.” Obama, in my dream bio, would then go on to mention how he met Seaver at a White Sox alumni function when he was an Illinois state senator and how Seaver remembered tripling that night more than he remembered pitching a shutout. Then, turning serious, Obama recalls the perfect form form for which Tom Seaver was known (“I used to watch him on the game of the week in Hawaii and I loved how he used his legs”) and how he adapted late in his career when he didn’t have his fastball, and how we, as Americans, can take a lesson from that.

Barack Obama never said any of that. Never went to a Mets game while attending Columbia as far as I know. Too bad. All presidents should go to Mets games. If Ronald Reagan were still alive, he could urge Jeff Wilpon to tear down that wall in left. If Franklin Roosevelt managed the Mets, we’d have nothing to fear from seeing Gary Matthews and Frank Catalanotto soak up at-bats because he would institute a New Deal and trade them both. If William Henry Harrison had managed the Mets…oh wait, he did — reincarnated as Salty Parker (and again as Mike Cubbage).

Republicans, Democrats, Whigs, whoever. Now is the time for all good Mets to come to the aid of their country. And vice-versa.

A Supreme Court justice may be a better fit for the Mets than a president. The Mets exist mostly because of the brilliant mind of a lawyer named Bill Shea. Supreme Court justices are supposed to be shielded from the day-to-day nonsense of political bickering. We like to sit quietly in our chambers and contemplate the great issues of the day, like why is Oliver Perez still here? And let us not forget the note Justice Potter Stewart’s clerk delivered to him on October 10, 1973, one Stewart shared with Justice Harry Blackmun:

V.P. AGNEW JUST RESIGNED!!
METS 2 REDS 0.

The Mets would go on to win the game and the pennant. Spiro Agnew would be replaced by Gerald Ford, who would replace Richard Nixon. Nixon went to Mets games as he lived out his political exile in New Jersey. In July 1990, he told Larry King the Mets were going to the World Series: “The Mets will make it because of pitching.” Like Nixon versus Kennedy, the Mets finished second. Still, he did shake Tom Seaver’s hand at a reception for major league All-Stars in 1969.

“Oh,” Nixon greeted him, “you’re the young man who won for the Mets even when they were losing.”

A good Tom Seaver anecdote helps every president look good. Failing that, putting a Mets fan on the Supreme Court is a step in the right direction. Good luck to Elena Kagan, one of ours. If she’s confirmed by the Senate, and her gavel happens to slip and conk Sonia Sotomayor on her Yankee-lovin’ noggin during some future oral argument, well, let’s just chalk that up to a lack of pine tar on the handle.

16 comments to SCOTUS SEZ LGM!

  • Bluenatic

    I’m as thrilled as the next Mets fan to learn that Kagan can be counted among our number. But I’m worried that this also means she roots for the Jets.

  • Rob D.

    I was watching O’s intro of her in the lobby of the floor where my new job is, waiting for Human resources to escort me to get my new company ID. I let out a “Whoo!” when he said she was a Met fan. No disrespect to Sotomayor, but Kagan clearly has one up on the Justice from the Bronx.

  • Should Kagan get in, hopefully it’ll be easier for her to render a decision than a Mets starter under the quick gavel of Judge Jerry. It’s like Fernando Nieve has been sentenced to hard labor. Nightly Nieve looked like he was going to drop from exhaustion as he was warming up Sunday.

    • Matt from Sunnyside

      I agree. It’s always “rubber arm,” “rubber arm,” “rubber arm,” until it’s “homerun,” “homerun,” “MRI.” They really cannot expect Nieve to maintain this pace.

      Jay Horowitz said today that the Mets will invite Kagan to throw out the first pitch at an upcoming game. But, maybe instead they should see if she’s available for a few innings of long relief next time Ollie is pitching.

  • […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by You Gotta Believe!, chris_coletta. chris_coletta said: Elena Kagan a Mets fan. Great stuff, as always, from the Faith & Fear in Flushing blog. http://ow.ly/1JbDh […]

  • Marc R

    I’ll bet she’s a Mets fan for the same reason I am: her dad was from Brooklyn.

    Scalia is from Queens and Ginsburg is from Brooklyn. Who do they root for?

  • NostraDennis

    Obama loves Kaminsky Park.

  • Lou Banjawi

    Scalia on 60 Minutes: “Asked if he’s a Yankees fan, Scalia says, ‘Absolutely, what else would I be?'”

    Typical. Let’s hope Ginsburg provides parity.

  • Ben Nathan

    Let’s hope Bobby Valentine pulls a Grover Cleveland

  • Kiner's Coroner

    As a high school junior, a friend and I decided to break the tension of studying for NYS Regents’ exams by hopping in his VW Beetle and heading to Shea Stadium to see Tom Seaver early in his second go-round as a Met. (If I recall correctly, the general admission tickets we bought were $4 back then.) It was a damp, chilly afternoon in May, and while the announced attendance was something like 45,000, I can tell you that there were far fewer at Shea due to the weather. Seaver went 8 innings, gave up two homers, and the Mets lost, 5-0.

    Eight years later, almost to the day, I earned my law degree. Which has been almost as useful as a good Tom Seaver anecdote.

  • Scalia is from Queens and he says what else would he be but a Yankees fan? No comment.

  • Z

    Worst of all, Alito’s a Phillies lifer.

  • Marc R

    Apparently Ginsburg considers herself a Brooklyn Dodgers fan still.

    Talk about originalism.

  • “A good Tom Seaver anecdote helps every president look good. Failing that, putting a Mets fan on the Supreme Court is a step in the right direction. Good luck to Elena Kagan, one of ours. If she’s confirmed by the Senate, and her gavel happens to slip and conk Sonia Sotomayor on her Yankee-lovin’ noggin during some future oral argument, well, let’s just chalk that up to a lack of pine tar on the handle.”

    — Brilliant!!!!!

    Now, Obama wears that Sox jacket around, and we know Tom was swiped by the Sox for win No. 300. Wonder if Obama has some Tom Seaver love, too.

  • The Frito Pundito

    I look forward to her opinion in Wilpon vs Castillo