What I've been up to


Lots and lots of baseball.

Specifically, watching the Natty Nats. Seriously, I've been to, like, 15 games already. I was there Wednesday night until about 12:30 a.m. because of a rain delay, and Metro was nice enough to actually stay open and get me home. I was there last Saturday, and I'll be there again Monday and Wednesday.

How great is this? Team's in first place, with a middling payroll and no superstars... I had forgotten what that looks like. So fun. And RFK's the most pitcher-friendly park in the majors, leading to more tight, exciting games.

Ah, but so very many ways to screw it up. And we came up with a few. For example: still not on TV. The team just swept Pittsburgh; none of those close games were on TV. In the series a couple weeks ago against the Los Angelheim Angels, a game in which the opposing pitcher was thrown out for cheating, and Frank Robinson got in a shouting match with the opposing manager... was not on TV. The following night, Chad Cordero enters with a one-run lead, loads the bases with no outs, and gets out of the jam. Very exciting and dramatic... oh and what? Not on TV.

But it's worth it, because it means Peter Angelos is not getting so much money for MASN, which does my heart good. Amusingly, he took out a full-page ad in every paper in town last week, urging Nats fans to call their cable companies to demand that his Satanic regional sports network be picked up. To which all Nats fans basically responsed, "No. Because you're Satan."

Some rich people we tolerate, and others we don't. Some Republicans in Congress are really concerned that George Soros might become a part-owner of the team. So concerned that they threatened to take away baseball's antitrust exemption if it happens!

I wasn't even so mad about the threat itself; I've come to expect that kind of nonsensical meddling by Congress in random local affairs. Big surprise, it's our old friend Tom Davis who's behind this. (And nobody, I mean nobody I've talked to has cared to defend this latest bizarreness.)

I was more upset that... this is what you guys decide to play the antitrust card on? What about all those other times when you could have pulled the exemption or threatened to pull it to fix baseball's problems? For example, without the exemption, the judiciary could have intervened during the '94 strike and saved the World Series. Or, even better, without the exemption, baseball wouldn't have been able to keep the Expos from moving to D.C. using a monopolistic cabal of owners.

And now, you finally, finally play that card because you disagree with a potential team owner's politics? Whiskey... Tango... Foxtrot?!

Meanwhile, D.C.'s been eager to welcome the team with open arms, but not enough to, you know, not break into the players' cars at RFK while the team's out of town. Twice.

"I asked the security guard after the first time, 'Are you going to have security?' " McCraw said. "He said, '24 [hours a day], seven [days a week]. You don't have to worry about nothing.' Well, he was wrong."
No, no no no... you don't understand. In this case, 24-7 means "Every seven hours, I'll stop by and check on your cars for 24 seconds. And then go get a donut." Welcome to the D.C., bitch! For reals: when somebody employed by D.C. government says they're going to do something, you have to understand that they're completely lying. Just pretend it's Perpetual Opposite Day, and it will make a lot more sense.

Speaking of which: how about the mayor? So full of himself at that game I was at a few weeks ago, as his admirers cheered him on; so proud of his forthcoming $500M stadium. And poor Eastern High, right next to RFK, can't even afford more than one box of baseballs for its team. (The mayor had promised to go to their first game after they helped teach him to throw less like a girl for the Nats opener, but, you know... Opposite Day.)

Unfortunately, that's the kind of fiscal imbalance that upsets only me. I may have a serious problem.

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