August 02, 2006

Stop That Train

Tales From the New York Underground, Vol. 1

Why? Because subway riding is a sport, whether you like it or not...

You drop in at 59th Street/Columbus Circle. It's been called the worst station in all of the five boroughs -- always crowded, and in the summer it gets hotter than a puss-filled blister in The Devil's armpit.

After swiping through the turnstile, you immediately sense that your train is coming, and pick up your pace accordingly. From the top of the stairs, you see it, your train, and you know you must make it on board. You'd sooner dive in front of an oncoming train than stand on the platform in this heat.

You get to the bottom of the stairs, and see that the doors are still open. You're almost there. However, the first open door is packed with people. Same for the second. And third. Up ahead, you can see an open doorway where there's room to get in, and you accelerate. Now it's a half run.

You're ready to make your final surge for the door when you realize you've somehow failed to notice the rather round woman and her man lover who are slowly walking along ahead of you. Evasive action comes too late, and you bump into into the round woman from behind. Yet somehow you manage to bounce off her, shoving ever so slightly off her shoulders and diving into the open door. She lets out a yelp to signify her displeasure. The man lover is not amused either, primarily because he's heard her yelp and assumed you hit her much harder than you did.

"Hey, what the hell?" he says, stopping and turning around.

"I'm just trying to get on the train," you respond.

"So is everyone else, but there's three other open doors right here," he says, as if to suggest there was no reason for you to shove past.

"Look, I had to get in this door," you say.

Any escalation to the argument is averted when the subway doors pull shut. To your left stands a man who, according to the name on the back of his jersey, goes by "Ghetto." Just below the name is the number 8. He's been watching the whole thing, and he shakes his head in what is meant to be a sign of his support.

You look back at him and shrug, as if to say, What can you do?

Dabbing at his sweaty forehead with a hand towel, #8 turns to you and says, "Only in New York, man."

  • One of the most interesting subplots to yesterday's MLB trading deadline was the Mets suddenly being forced to trade away starting right fielder Xavier Nady for bullpen help after top setup man Duaner Sanchez suffered a separated shoulder in a taxi cab accident in Florida. The lesson here, of course: Never ride in taxi cabs. Well, actually, sometimes riding in cabs is inevitable. The real lesson is, always wear a seatbelt. Omm...hang on, actually we don't know if he was wearing a seatbelt or not. Perhaps the most appropriate takeaway from this incident is, Damn, that sucks. Sorry dude.
  • It's been a good several days for Devil Rays' prospects: First, B.J. Upton, Delmon Young and Elijah Dukes all publicly criticized the organization in USA Today for not having brought them to the Majors. Then on Tuesday, the organization suspended Dukes indefinitely in connection with a previous incident in which he was suspended for arguing balls and strikes in a AAA game. And in the wake of this most recent suspension, Dukes decided to take his toys and go home, suggesting that he might never play the sport again. Upton has finally been called up, but it's a shame to see Young and Dukes languishing in the minors when all they have to do is be on reasonably decent behavior to get called up. Which is pretty selfish when you think about it, because they could really be helping the OCC's fantasy team if they were so inclined.
  • Did anyone else happen to catch Bobby Abreu's first AB in pinstripes Tuesday night? It was a routine grounder to second, so you didn't miss much, except that something strange happened: Abreu sprinted, and nearly beat it out. Has Bobby Abreu ever run so hard on a routine ground ball in his life? The OCC has been witness to many an Abreu AB over the years, and the site of him busting it to first looked very strange. If memory serves correctly, he is one of the worst loafers in the game. And logic would suggest he probably hasn't turned into Charlie Hustle for good; he's just trying to win over the New York fans. The bet here is he'll be dogging it again come September, and New York fans will hate him for it. That dude is so lazy, he wouldn't lunge for a subway car if the door was opening right in front of him.


Blogger jimmyrad said...

OCC, I've found the best way to treat subway stations and crowds, in general, is to stop knocking over old ladies.

3:16 PM, August 02, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

in japan, the old ladies do the knocking. they are short, and hunched, and antediluvian... and tough as nails. had that been here in tokyo, de la occ, you likely would have found yourself crumpled like the ticket stub in your pocket.

only in tokyo, man...

in somewhat related news, dilemma: in a keeper league, who would you rather have, utley or d-wright?


9:33 AM, August 03, 2006  
Blogger The OCC said...

Antediluvian -- impressive. I definitely had to look that word up. Turns out it means really old.

As for the dilemma, I'd keep David Wright. I think he's got more upside. Utley is nice but I see him topping out as a 30 HR, 100 rbi guy. I think Wright's going to develop into a high 30's, possibly 40-HR hitter.

3:50 PM, August 03, 2006  

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