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Dunham Bull?

What constitutes a trend? For our purposes, let’s say it’s when two people you know relay to you, independent of one another, the same piece of informatio [1]n accompanied by a similar slice of curiosity.

In her upcoming memoir [2], Not That Kind Of Girl, the reliably trendy Lena Dunham says her gynecologist used to pitch for the Mets. This is how she says it:

“Randy is my gynecologist. I have had a number of gynecologists over the years, all talented in their own ways, but Randy is the best. He is an older Jewish man who, before deciding to inspect ladies down there for a living, played for the Mets. He still has the can-do determination of a pitcher on an underdog team and, to my mind, that is exactly the kind of man you want delivering babies or rooting around in your vagina.”

Isn’t that a great story? Even if it’s probably a story?

I don’t wish to cast aspersions upon the veracity of the creator and epicenter of Girls, a critically acclaimed (if periodically scorned) HBO series that a couple of seasons ago did include the rather random line, “Did ya hear that? The Mets are up, three-two.” When the Mets make an appearance on prestige cable, I am most definitely appreciative [3].

Still, even while respecting doctor-patient confidentiality, what the fudge? (On Girls, the phrasing wouldn’t be so PG-13.) Who among 984 Mets present and past could Lena Dunham be referring to?

My trend-generating friends have already saved me the trouble of doing the detective work regarding Mets named Randy. Thanks to them, I can tell you that there have been six, five of whom were pitchers, three on decidedly underdog teams.

• Randy Sterling, 1974
• Randy Tate, 1975
• Randy Jones, 1981-1982
• Randy Niemann, 1985-1986
• Randy Myers, 1985-1989
• Randy Milligan, 1987

We can eliminate Randy Niemann, for we know, from his stints as Met bullpen coach, he is a “baseball lifer” (unlike most coaches who apparently just dabble in baseball; what an odd term). Similarly, Randy Jones instructs Padres pitchers every spring and erstwhile first baseman Randy Milligan is an Orioles scout. Randy Sterling, according to an Ultimate Mets Database memory-leaver [4], went into parks and recreation (actual parks & rec, not the TV show). Randy Tate, a UMDB source assures [5], is not a doctor. Randy Myers returned to the Pacific Northwest after his playing days were over and no available evidence suggests he pursued medicine.

So let’s assume “Randy” is a pseudonym. Let’s take the other aspect of Lena Dunham’s description of her ex-Met doctor as “an older Jewish man”. There have been eleven Mets who, whether by faith, heritage or partial identity, could be referred to as Jewish.

Five of them — Shawn Green, David Newhan, Scott Schoeneweis, Ike Davis and Josh Satin — have been busy playing baseball during the past decade, which would make it difficult for them to have obtained the necessary degrees, set up a practice and attract a star-studded clientele. Also, although Lena seems impossibly young to have achieved as much as she has, I have to imagine even 41-year-old Green doesn’t strike 28-year-old Dunham as “older” in the classic sense. (If, somehow, it’s Scheoeneweis, I hope her insurance covers catastrophic events.)

Three of them — Joe Ginsberg, Greg Goossen and Dave Roberts — are no longer with us. If Ms. Dunham is referring to one of them, she might be overdue for a checkup.

That leaves Norm Sherry, Art Shamsky and Elliott Maddox. I’ve seen Shamsky and Maddox interviewed enough to discern that they don’t doctor for a living. Sherry is 81, which meets the general age requirement, but he stayed in baseball well after his playing days were over. (Sherry was a catcher, not a pitcher, though I suppose a well-worn mitt might come in handy for holding on to newborns.)

OK, so no former Met named Randy and no former Met who is or was Jewish seems to be Lena Dunham’s gynecologist. Why, then, would she say such a thing?

A few theories:

1) She’s a clever girl who makes up things. It’s gotten her this far.

2) The mystery doctor entertained her with a fun backstory and she bought it.

3) The mystery doctor perhaps tried out for the Mets or was drafted in a low round by the Mets and Lena misinterpreted those credentials as a genuine, The Holy Books [6]-caliber Met career. (Every now and then I meet someone who, when they find out I’m a baseball fan, can’t wait to tell me about a relative who “was scouted” for the majors. What the hell, it’s closer than I’ll ever get.)

I could be wrong. I’m not a doctor to the stars and I don’t play one on TV, so maybe when Dunham’s book comes out, so will the OB/GYN who treats a famous patient, but first takes off his World Series ring before doing so.

It’s also possible, a fellow blogger [7] points out, that she’s gullible as hell and is thus susceptible to terribly lame pickup lines in bars. And that would be fine, too, especially if she uses it in her show.

I’m thinking of the next season of Girls. It should be set in the summer of 2013, when Dunham as lead character Hannah Horvath and her sort of classy on-again, off-again pal Marnie decide to ditch their first-world problems in Brooklyn and jet to Las Vegas for a weekend of high jinks.

***

MARNIE
It’s about time. While I’ve been waiting for you here in the bar, I’ve had to fend off this rumpled little guy with a mustache who just reeks of Marlboros. Kept talking about how somebody owes him his big break and that he can’t stand being stuck “riding the buses,” whatever that means. I think he went out to buy more cigarettes. Uch.

HANNAH
Really? I just met this great guy in the casino. Sexy facial hair, lots of soul AND he’s from New York.

MARNIE
What’s his name?

HANNAH
Ike. Ike something.

MARNIE
You just broke up with Adam and you’ve found another one just like him.

HANNAH
No, he’s completely different. Ike is an athlete.

MARNIE
An athlete?

HANNAH
Yeah. He’s plays for the Mets!

MARNIE
The Mets, Hannah?

HANNAH
Yes. He told me he’s one of their best players. He hit 32 home runs last year, which sounds like A LOT. What?

MARNIE
Think about it, Hannah. If he really hit 32 home runs in the big leagues last year, then what’s he doing in Las Vegas? Wouldn’t he be in New York or somewhere with the Mets right now?

HANNAH
Maybe he’s attending a professional conclave. Like a convention of baseball players.

MARNIE
Don’t they play baseball in New York this time of year?

HANNAH
Well, my gynecologist told me…

MARNIE
The Jewish one who also “played for the Mets”?

HANNAH
Yes, kindly old Dr. Metsenbaum. Dr. Metsenbaum told me they take a little break every summer.

MARNIE
And you believe everything your gynecologist tells you.

HANNAH
I have to. I can’t maintain such an intimate relationship without a certain degree of mutual trust. He trusts me to keep my appointments, I trust him to have played for the Mets.

MARNIE
Hannah, I worry about you.

HANNAH
Don’t. It’s all very Zen. It’s like my doctor says, “you gotta believe.”

MARNIE
Your doctor said that?

HANNAH
He invented it. He said it was his thing.

MARNIE
It was very definitely a thing — a thing Tug McGraw came up with like forty years ago.

HANNAH
Who?

MARNIE
Tug McGraw. He was a Met and he invented that phrase. Even I know that.

HANNAH
Well, maybe that was my gynecologist’s stage name. Baseball players have those, don’t they?

MARNIE
How do you figure?

HANNAH
All that stuff about “performance-enhancing drugs” means athletes are performers, and performers have stage names. You know, like Lana Turner. Or The Rock.

MARNIE
The ROCK?

HANNAH
You think he was born “The Rock”? I don’t think so. And don’t tell me he’s not a performer. We both laughed when he hosted SNL, remember?

MARNIE
Look, I just Googled Tug McGraw. Your gynecologist is definitely not Tug McGraw.

HANNAH
I didn’t say he was. Besides, I can’t keep arguing with you about this. I told Ike I’m gonna meet him for dinner.

MARNIE
Dinner and what else?

HANNAH
He says he wants me to help him with his stance.

MARNIE
His stance? Hannah, don’t you understand a euphemism when you hear one?

HANNAH
Ike says the only thing holding him back is his “stance” and he wants to hear my thoughts on it. He coincidentally also has a rumpled little guy with a mustache who reeks of Marlboros helping him out, but it doesn’t hurt to get a second opinion. I think Dr. Metsenbaum would approve.

Can’t promise everything said on this program will come true, but I try to offer an honest assessment of the Mets on The Happy Recap Radio Show. Listen in here [8].