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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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Addicted to Mediocrity

“You again, my man! What can I do ya for?”
“Cut the crap. You know what I need.”
“I thought I setcha up last night.”
“I need more. C’mon, c’mon…”
“What’sa matter? Last night not enough?”
“It wore off. I need more. C’mon…”
“I dunno…”
“Whaddaya mean you don’t know? Set me up!”

“I’m just playin’ with ya, bro. I knew you’d be back.”
“Great, great, whaddaya got? It’s raining, I’m going crazy waiting.”
“Nothin’ wrong with a little rain. Helps the crops, right?”
“Don’t gimme that! Rain means I gotta wait! The delay is killing me!”
“How about some of this fresh batch of ‘Pregame’? Got it straight from Eddie C.”
“‘Pregame’? That shit’s weak! I need the real stuff!”
“Patience, my man. I think we got some ‘Howie and Josh’. Yeah, tarp’s off this shipment, bro. Help yourself.”
“‘Howie and Josh’? Wasn’t it ‘Howie and Jim’ last night? ‘Howie and Jim’ was real good last night! What happened to ‘Howie and Jim’?”

“Relax, amigo. This stuff’s better. Street name’s ‘Flagship’. Just came in overnight from San Diego. Give it a taste.”
“Oh yeah…oh yeah! ‘Howie and…’”
“‘Howie and Josh,’ that’ll get ya through ’til Monday night.”
“What else? What else? What else ya got?”
“Maybe you’d like to sample a little ‘Hefner’.”
“What? Whofner?”
“Never heard of it. Any good?”
“They’re calling it ‘Sixth Starter’ on the street.”
“‘Sixth Starter’? I never heard of no ‘Sixth Starter’. Sounds weird.”
“No, man. Try a hit.”
Ugh! That’s no good!”

“I’m tellin’ ya, bro, ya gotta let it kick in. In Washington, they get one hit off ‘Hefner,’ and then it’s like…BAM! One hit after another!”
“I can’t wait for something like that to work. What else ya got? I’m Jonesin’ here. I need somethin’ better. The shit I’ve been gettin’ lately ain’t shit! I used to see pictures, man. I used to turn on at 7:10 and see pictures! I ain’t seen pictures since Friday night! I need somethin’!”
“Hold on, hold on…try this.”
“What’s that?”

“Just got it in from my Boston connection. It’s called ‘Shoppach’.”
“‘Shoppach’? What’s ‘Shoppach’?”
“Its street name is ‘the UnThole’. Think of it as a change of pace. Like 7UP back in the day.”
“It’s good?”
“I’m tellin’ ya — it’s different. Not what you’re used to. It might take a second, but it comes highly recommended.”
“Enough sales pitch. Just gimme some.”
“Here ya go…”
Whoa! This is different! Not amazing different, but different. I can feel it hitting…and kinda like…”

“Yeah, that’s it, catching!”
“See? That’s why they call it ‘the UnThole’.”
“Whatever, man. Let me get some more of that ‘Shoppach’. It’s better than that weak-ass ‘Nickeas’ shit you were pushing on me earlier this year.”
“Yeah. Sorry about that. Thought it would be better.”
“How much? How much?”
“Just gimme back some of that bullpen stuff from last month if you still got it and we’ll call it square.”
“Done. Hey, can I borrow your phone?”
“My phone? What you want my phone for?”
“I dunno, man. I tried this ‘Shoppach,’ and now I gotta borrow your phone.”
“I’m not givin’ you my phone. Use your own phone.”
“No way, man! I gotta send a text but it can’t be from my phone!”
“Hey, you all right? There might be some side effects from ‘Shoppach’.”
“I can’t use my own phone! Then they’ll know it’s from me!”
“Yeah, one of the side effects might be paranoia or somethin’. Man, take it easy on that ‘Shoppach’. Try a little of this instead.”
“What’s that?”

“It’s good, man. It calms ya down.”
“What is it?”
“It’s, uh…”
“What? WHAT?”
“The street name is ‘Abyss’.”
“‘Abyss’? Didn’t you try to get me hooked on that before?”
“Ya got me. It’s ‘Bay’.”
“No way.”
“Don’t be like that, bro! You know how highly valued this shipment was?”
“Oh no way, man. You tried that on me before. Ain’t my fault you can’t get rid of that ‘Bay’ shit.”
“Bro, think of it as the equivalent of really good rum.”
“You know, like 151-proof.”
“Well, more like .151, but c’mon, give it another chance.”
“I need somethin’. Fine. Gimme that ‘Bay’ shit again.”

“Here ya go. Now remember it works real slow.”
“I don’t feel nothin’.”
“Nah, man. That means it’s workin’.”
“Nothin’ I’m tellin’ ya. Total zero. What the fuck?”
“Hey man, you said you wanted it.”
“I didn’t want no ‘Bay’!”
“Too late, man. You just had a whole ’nother season of it.”
“I did?”
“Three-quarters of a season. Same thing.”
“Damn. I don’t remember any of it. What just happened?”
Lost, 5-2. Sorry, bro.”
“Really? It’s all a blur.”
“See? It worked. You’re so into what I got that you probably didn’t even notice it’s 25 of 36.”
“Whatever. I got my fix. I’m good. I’m not messing with any of this anymore.”

“See ya tomorrow night.”
“You’re not hearin’ me. I told ya, I’m good. I’m done with you.”
“Sure, bro, though maybe you forgot about this week.”
“What’s so special about this week?”
“I’m getting some of that stuff in that you like.”
“You mean…”
“Yup. ‘Homestand’.”
“‘Homestand’…nah, man, I don’t care about that. I’m done.”
“Got tickets for ya. Right here…”
“Not interested. Well, lemme just see ’em…”
“Go ahead, bud. Hold ’em for a minute. Feel good in your hands, don’t they?”
“They kinda do. Maybe I’ll take just one…”
“Seven games, bro…”
“Nah, that’s crazy. I’ll just take a couple. Who’s playin’?”
“Rockies. And Astros.”
“Hey, they’re not too good! We could begin to make up some ground! Gimme all ya got!”

8 comments to Addicted to Mediocrity

  • Ray

    Uh huh. I could be leaving Connecticut in an hour and be home by 4. Instead I’m detouring to see the Mets (and some very nice people I know).

    Hello, my name is Ray and I’m a Mets fan.

  • Dave

    The first step is to admit you have a problem. The second step is to realize that absolutely nothing is going to be done about it, thereby eliminating steps three through twelve.

  • Inside Pitcher

    See you there Bro….

  • Lou

    Outstanding and you nailed it, the sickness and addiction of being a Mets fan. I used to say, and still do in fact, that being a Mets fan is like being a heroine addict. You know that crap is just no good for you but you can’t help yourself. It’s 7:10, time to shoot up again. Wow!

    • srt

      Is that what’s wrong with me? I’m addicted?

      Makes sense. Somehow, I feel better.
      It’s like watching a train wreck you just can’t turn away from. You know it’s not good but can’t help yourself.

      Love the Mets.

  • mikeL

    i’ve been turning the game on (TV) but listen from other rooms. i listen for good mets hits/plays and run to the tv to see the replay.

    i once thought about keeping the TV in the car, but i’m finding i can still get a lot done while the mets are playing these days. few times do i run to the tv.

    when i do settle down on the couch to give them my full attention i’m often ready for a snooze – so i don’t see them lose.

    call it metsadone. my problem was much more severe before the all star break, but back then i was flying high…sigh.

  • Tim Keane

    “Mediocrity” implies the nearly missed actualization of goodness. Besides gross player mismanagement, outright financial fraud by ownership and corporate-sponsored over-inflation of its tickets, vending and merchandise, The New York Mets have had three losing seasons in a row in the partially taxpayer-funded CitiField. A fourth losing season is nearly guaranteed. Last place is quite likely. This pattern means that the franchise and/or its Metro-area fan-base and its apologetic and heavily invested media outlets, and possibly even its bizarrely injured players, have us addicted to failure, all of which has been conveyed and marketed as valiant and patient rebuilding by a Harvard-educated GM. But perpetual failure is not at all mediocrity. It is lucrative failure. No duh. Harvard knows that.

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