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Greg Prince and Jason Fry
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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Don't Panic (Don't Bother)

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.

9 comments to Don’t Panic (Don’t Bother)

  • rich porricelli

    Losing streaks take on a life of there own..That train wreck repeating itself nightly and we watching- not looking away, holding on to a thing called hope..

  • For Gooden’s sake, take care of yourself. And if you’re hoping to feel better… rent a movie, don’t go to a double feature.

  • Andee

    OK, I have to know. Did the surgeon who stitched you up tell you the donkey dick joke?

    Anyway, it’s not really the fans’ place to panic or not panic. The team is what it is, it’s not like we have any veto power over the roster short-term. The only person for whom panicking should be an issue is Sandy Alderson. And he was specifically hired because of his ability NOT to panic at a time like this.

    • I was hoping somebody would ask because I swear that was the very first thing I thought of when the notion of stitches was brought up. And no — though I screamed more than Joan ever did.

  • harv sibley

    On this Palm Sunday, i am thankful that i spent yesterday driving south through NC, avoiding tornados, viscious rain and wind, reaching my destination to see my entire family in Winston Salem….. And thankful that i did not watch one minute of either game. Hang in there Metropolifans….all is not lost… the ship is simply making a huge turn, and it takes time to reconfigure. Its a very long season.

  • Florida Met Fan Rich

    Spring training 2012 is only 10 months away!

    You would have to be “Criminally Insane to watch the Mets and Astros play each other!…I wish I had the “Paper Bag Consession” at the park!

    Why panic? The fun is just starting!….Remember its “Still Early”

  • Alex Belth is one of the asterisks I must append to my usual vicious generalizations about Yankee fans. He is insanely good people.

  • kd bart

    Right now, they’re not worth watching attently. They’re background noise. Occasionally to glance at to see what incredible blunder they’ve managed now. Will it be a fly ball not caught or a stupendous base running mistake?

  • Joe D.

    Hi Greg,

    Being a Met fan and getting injured in the Bronx could be a dangerous proposition with few in the area bleeding orange and blue like we do. So next time call me to be assured of at least one local native sharing part of the pain with you.