Sometimes a sensible panic is the advisable course of action. For example, Friday night, at one of my periodic meetings of the New York Baseball Giants Nostalgia Society, I was attempting to open a large, round folding table, the kind that is difficult for one person to balance while unfolding. Somehow, in my attempt to do both simultaneously, I managed to get enough of my left ring finger caught between one of the legs and its metal hinge, and…OWWWWWWW!!!!!!
But I didn’t panic. Which was incredibly stupid, because I was losing blood like Mets outfielders lose track of fly balls. My attitude was “it’s just an oversized paper cut, let me get a Band-Aid.” I would have needed a box of them, and even that wouldn’t have solved my problem. Still, I had schlepped all the way to the Bronx, I looked forward to hearing from my fellow Nostalgists — who had the wisdom to open their large, round tables in conjunction with a partner — and enjoying my NYBGNS pizza and the whole bit. The whole bit, however, doesn’t include oozing blood like the Mets bullpen oozes leads.
“Hey, you all right?” asked a Society member who also happens to be an esteemed blolleague (albeit from the other, less angst-ridden side of the tracks). I said I thought so, even as the handkerchief I was wrapping around my finger was turning as red as the Mets line score routinely turns blank. A little friendly concern convinced me I wasn’t quite all right; concern soon turned into an extraordinary act of friendship as the blogger — not just alarmed but quick-thinking and locally versed — soon had me on my way to a nearby emergency room.
So I never got my Giants talk and I never got my pizza and the whole bit of schlepping up to the Bronx resulted in a tetanus shot and four stitches administered in Upper Manhattan, but I learned a valuable lesson (besides that I should ask for help when confronted by an imposing folding table): sometimes you should panic a little. It’s not normal to watch blood spurt from your finger like it’s hope spurting from the Mets’ season.
But I wouldn’t panic about the Mets’ season, at least not the state to which it continued to descend Saturday as they lost their sixth and seventh consecutive games by dropping yet another doubleheader, this one to the Braves. Fingers aren’t supposed to develop holes in them like the heart of the Mets’ order has. The Mets as a whole, though? Let’s face it, there’s something distressingly unsurprising about their hemorrhaging defeats like I (if you’ll allow me a little dramatic license) was hemorrhaging blood.
I’m fine now, thanks to my friend Alex Belth and the staff of the Allen Hospital of New York-Presbyterian. I’m even using my left ring finger to type letters like “S,” “W” and “X”. Friday night I would have had a tough time covering certain conferences, but that’s not a problem now. The Mets are a problem, but not one worth panicking over. They’ll be fine eventually, but — Chris Young notwithstanding — they really don’t require a gypsy cab ride to the nearest emergency room. They’re too far gone at the moment to be effectively treated by an injection and a few stitches.
They may need group therapy by the time they return to Citi Field, but that’s a much longer process.