There really are Mazzys. They look nothing like their namesake Lee Mazzilli, but who besides Lee Mazzilli ever did? I won my third consecutive Mazzy for writing about the Mets Saturday night. The first two were notes in blog posts, which was plenty nice as it was. The third was handed to me like it was a real thing. It was a real thing. It’s not every day somebody wants to hand you an award. When somebody does, you accept it graciously and you say thank you very much.
So thank you very much to the Mets Police — chief Shannon Shark and enforcer Media Goon — for the honor and, even better, the merging of blogger whimsy with reality-based event-planning and making an evening out of the Mazzys. That meant not just a lighthearted awards program that focused on blogging yet touched on many matters Metsian (R.A. Dickey won two, even though he in 2013, like Mazz in 1989, will be wearing Jays blue), but the gathering of several dozen Mets fans who would otherwise have been paying homage to our 1962 batting coach Rogers Hornsby by staring out the window and waiting for spring.
Congratulations to my fellow Mazzy recipients. Congratulations to all who were nominated. Congratulations to all who weren’t nominated but could’ve been. Congratulations to Mets fans everywhere is my philosophy. We are a 108-54 tribe, no matter what kind of record we are saddled with in any given year.
The Mazzys were bestowed in the hamlet of Woodside, which was perfect for my LIRR needs and just uncold enough around 5 PM Saturday to dream. It wasn’t really still January, was it? Pitchers and catchers must, at the very least, be long-tossing somewhere. And if Stephanie and I are in Woodside, that must mean we’ll be changing for the 7 to Flushing, right? Right?
Maybe not, but this was OK, too.
Mets Police picked Donovan’s as site of the Mazzys. Good choice based on locale, reputation and the room they assigned us; not so good based on our food practically never showing up. There were drinks, there were awards, there were greetings for old friends, there were introductions to new acquaintances, there was passionate Mets talk laced with reverence for our Piazza-packed past, wariness of our Dickey-deprived present and vague hope directed toward our undefined future…but there was no sign — none — that our complicated order of one cheeseburger and one turkey burger was en route. I began considering the efficacy of dipping my Mazzy in ketchup on the chance it would taste like chicken. It took three inquiries before we could tease the following status report from the kitchen:
“Your order is up.”
I’m not sure what that meant exactly, but it didn’t seem to indicate the presence of burgers was nigh. Half the room was paying its checks and zipping its coats while we were embroiled in tense hostage negotiations with the waitress — “Listen, can just we pay for the drinks? We have a train to catch.” She eventually agreed to release the burgers in aluminum receptacles so we could take them to go. We made our train, got lucky at Jamaica and found our dinner still warm when we broke it out of its plastic bag at home. I turned on the Packers and Vikings and then turned them off almost immediately, palpably insulted that after we put on our Mets stuff and took a trip to Woodside, baseball season had somehow failed to ignite.
My Mazzy, meanwhile, found a home between esteemed bobbleheads of Keith Olbermann and Buddy Harrelson. I’m sure the three of them will have plenty to discuss as they, too, stare out the window and wait for spring.
From medium-rare to well-done: Matthew Callan’s Amazin’ Avenue review of The Happiest Recap: 50 Years of the New York Mets as Told in 500 Amazin’ Wins (First Base: 1962-1973). And if you’ve ever wanted to read a book written by a Mazzy-winning author, have I got a link for you…