Fier Thy Words

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A Strange Halloween for this Sports Fan

10/31/07

Trick or treat?

That I guess is the question Yankee fans must be asking themselves today.

Joe Torre out, Joe Girardi in.

But thats ok, because Torre was disrespected by the organization and so he decided that it would be probably be best for the two to part ways.

The Yankees would go on to hire a replacement (Girardi), while Torre can go enjoy retirement.

Whats that? Joe Torre is going to replace Red Sox great Grady (“no i’m not Syracuse Football head coach Greg Robinson’s twin brother) Little and become the new manager of the Los Angeles Dodgers?

Strange happenings to say the least.

And now reports are coming out that Alex Rodriguez may end up following Torre to L.A., to play for the same manager who batted him 8th…8TH!!! in a pivotal division series game last season.

And speaking of Alex Rodriguez, arguably the greatest player in baseball right now, he will be in all likelyhood playing somewhere other than the Bronx next year. Kobe Bryant, arguably (and in my non-professional opinion) the greatest player in basketball right now, also appears to be headed out of town after trade requests and management issues.

Wouldn’t that be something. In the same brief period of time we could see two legendary sports figures, both headed to Los Angeles, with one legendary (and two if consider Kobe leaving L.A. means Phil Jackson isn’t far behind) sports figure leaving behind the nation’s biggest city still without an NFL franchise.

What is really scary to think is that the teams I happen to root for, in this case the Mets and Knicks, seem to have more stability within their respective franchises than the one team I love to hate. The Yankees are changing managers, losing a first ballot hall of famer and hoping to retain another, without any guarentees.

The Mets will be undergiong change but not nearly as dramatic a facelift as the Yankees are going through. The Knicks? Well as I was told by my roommate Matt (and he heard this in an interview), Isiah Thomas has done everything imaginable and then some to lose his job, yet he will be sitting on the bench for another season. Losing records, overpaying for under preforming talent, being convicted of sexual harassment and costing your boss 11 million dollars?

Sounds worthy of another contract extension if you ask me.

Happy Halloween all.

October 31, 2007 Posted by | Sports | Leave a comment

"I’ll Take One of those Time-Machines You Got on Sale Back There"

10/30/07

Ever since watching Donnie Darko- which I highly recommend everybody sees at least once (twice if you want any chance of understanding it)- I have always been somewhat fixated with the whole concept of time travel. Seeing into the future could have some appeal, but then having to go back to the present knowing what awaited you would be no fun at all. Unless you had the ability to change what you had seen in your future, which would then completely defeat the purpose.

So- I generally waste way too much of my time wondering what I would do or not do given the ability to go back in time.

Now I don’t know about you, but I have always had some fundamental questions should such a trip ever take place.

1. When I go back in time, would I be going back in my current state or to the state I was in at the time?
2. Would I go back with all of the knowledge I have now, or only what I knew to that point?
3. Would I have to pay roaming charges should I make a phone call on my cell?

Ok, so take away the third question (although you know its a cool thought) and I am left with 2 things which are awfully important if you are considering going back in time.

Personally, if given the oppurtunity, I would hope to be placed back in state I was in at that point, with the knowledge I current possess. I guess you could argue that by going back in time knowing what you now right now would sort of be the same thing as coming back to the future knowing what was going to happen.

But for arguments sake, lets just say I can go back in time and make decisions all over again, knowing full well where many of these decisions ended up leaving me.

For instance: The first thing I would do is go back in time to the night I decided to pay $10.50 to see Balls of Fury. I would have to go back in time knowing the movie was among the worst pieces of cinematic creation in the history of film. Not knowing so would probably cost me the $10.50 all over again. And for the record, the reason I saw it was curiosity with nothing else to do on a Tuesday night. I regret it, lets move on.

But in all seriousness, there are lots of situations I would love to do all over again. Would I go back and study harder for my SAT’s? Absolutely not, because I still ended up here. Would I go back and alter anything I did academically come to think about it? Fuck no. I am damn proud of how little I worked and how far I’ve gotten, thank you very much.

There is probably a lot of purchases I’ve made over the years I would go back and not make, such as the 100+ dollars I spent in 8th grade on WWF action figures I ended up playing with maybe 3 times. I overpaid countless times to have things overnighted due to my unbearable impatience, but looking back I probably didn’t need to have Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory shipped the next day as if it were the last copy in existence (talking of course about the Gene Wilder version, which is among the greatest movies you will ever see).

The most regrettable decisions I have ever made are probably too personal to write about, however at this point I really don’t have anything to lose (get it, because I already did) so if I could back, there are a handful of situations I would have handled very differently.

I would have treated those closest to me better, and trusted more. I would have appreciated the time I spent with certain people a lot more than I did, and not gotten so caught up in what else I could have been doing, while instead just being happy with what I was doing.

I would have realized that trying to be right all the time wasn’t worth it (even though I probably was…jk…but seriously) and that fighting with people (and I’m not singling out anybody in particular) never really solved any major problems.

I would have listened a hell of a lot more to the wants and needs of people other than myself, for it probably would have taught me a lot of the things I wasn’t doing, along with a lot of things I should have been doing.

I would have respected other people a lot more, for once again, I probably on many of occasions thought my way was the only way, and as a result came accross as being incredibly insensitive.

Finally, I would have never been selfish enough to think that being by myself was the right way to go, because anybody will agree that there aren’t a whole lot of feelings worse than being alone. And im not just talking about relationships. Going to the mall or the movies. Getting something to eat. Seeing a baseball game or even just wasting away an afternoon. All typically more entertaining with another person you can share the experience with.

But back to reality. Going back in time is a fantasy, if you even want to call it that. The past is exactly what it is. The past. It can’t be changed, for better or worse, and thats probably the best thing for all of us. The best we can hope for is to learn from everything we’ve done, and do our best not to do the wrongs things again, while finding ways to make the right things even better.

Sorry to get all sappy on you, but I think its all pretty true. The best thing to do is to try and make safe decisions you wont regret.

Now does anybody want to lend me $10.50? Theres a 8pm showing of Good Luck Chuck I can still catch.

October 30, 2007 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

If I Could Turn Back Time

10/30/07

Ever since watching Donnie Darko- which I highly recommend everybody sees at least once (twice if you want any chance of understanding it)- I have always been somewhat fixated with the whole concept of time travel. Seeing into the future could have some appeal, but then having to go back to the present knowing what awaited you would be no fun at all. Unless you had the ability to change what you had seen in your future, which would then completely defeat the purpose.

So- I generally waste way too much of my time wondering what I would do or not do given the ability to go back in time.

Now I don’t know about you, but I have always had some fundamental questions should such a trip ever take place.

1. When I go back in time, would I be going back in my current state or to the state I was in at the time?
2. Would I go back with all of the knowledge I have now, or only what I knew to that point?
3. Would I have to pay roaming charges should I make a phone call on my cell?

Ok, so take away the third question (although you know its a cool thought) and I am left with 2 things which are awfully important if you are considering going back in time.

Personally, if given the oppurtunity, I would hope to be placed back in state I was in at that point, with the knowledge I current possess. I guess you could argue that by going back in time knowing what you now right now would sort of be the same thing as coming back to the future knowing what was going to happen.

But for arguments sake, lets just say I can go back in time and make decisions all over again, knowing full well where many of these decisions ended up leaving me.

For instance: The first thing I would do is go back in time to the night I decided to pay $10.50 to see Balls of Fury. I would have to go back in time knowing the movie was among the worst pieces of cinematic creation in the history of film. Not knowing so would probably cost me the $10.50 all over again. And for the record, the reason I saw it was curiosity with nothing else to do on a Tuesday night. I regret it, lets move on.

But in all seriousness, there are lots of situations I would love to do all over again. Would I go back and study harder for my SAT’s? Absolutely not, because I still ended up here. Would I go back and alter anything I did academically come to think about it? Fuck no. I am damn proud of how little I worked and how far I’ve gotten, thank you very much.

There is probably a lot of purchases I’ve made over the years I would go back and not make, such as the 100+ dollars I spent in 8th grade on WWF action figures I ended up playing with maybe 3 times. I overpaid countless times to have things overnighted due to my unbearable impatience, but looking back I probably didn’t need to have Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory shipped the next day as if it were the last copy in existence (talking of course about the Gene Wilder version, which is among the greatest movies you will ever see).

The most regrettable decisions I have ever made are probably too personal to write about, however at this point I really don’t have anything to lose (get it, because I already did) so if I could back, there are a handful of situations I would have handled very differently.

I would have treated those closest to me better, and trusted more. I would have appreciated the time I spent with certain people a lot more than I did, and not gotten so caught up in what else I could have been doing, while instead just being happy with what I was doing.

I would have realized that trying to be right all the time wasn’t worth it (even though I probably was…jk…but seriously) and that fighting with people (and I’m not singling out anybody in particular) never really solved any major problems.

I would have listened a hell of a lot more to the wants and needs of people other than myself, for it probably would have taught me a lot of the things I wasn’t doing, along with a lot of things I should have been doing.

I would have respected other people a lot more, for once again, I probably on many of occasions thought my way was the only way, and as a result came accross as being incredibly insensitive.

Finally, I would have never been selfish enough to think that being by myself was the right way to go, because anybody will agree that there aren’t a whole lot of feelings worse than being alone. And im not just talking about relationships. Going to the mall or the movies. Getting something to eat. Seeing a baseball game or even just wasting away an afternoon. All typically more entertaining with another person you can share the experience with.

But back to reality. Going back in time is a fantasy, if you even want to call it that. The past is exactly what it is. The past. It can’t be changed, for better or worse, and thats probably the best thing for all of us. The best we can hope for is to learn from everything we’ve done, and do our best not to do the wrongs things again, while finding ways to make the right things even better.

Sorry to get all sappy on you, but I think its all pretty true. The best thing to do is to try and make safe decisions you wont regret.

Now does anybody want to lend me $10.50? Theres a 8pm showing of Good Luck Chuck I can still catch.

October 30, 2007 Posted by | Personal, Thoughts | Leave a comment

Tough Stretch for Yankee Fans

10/28/07

An open letter to Yankee fans.

Dear Yankee Faithful,

Before I begin, you must know I come with a bitter hatred for your organization from top to bottom, which includes you as an incredibly obnoxious, uneducated fan base.

However, as a Mets fan, I can’t talk right now about my own ball club, although nobody seems to care much about us anymore with all the headlines you’re team has been making, and for all the wrong reasons.

Tonight I pity you. I really do. Over the last few weeks you have:

-Been embarrassed in losing a best of 5 series to the Cleveland Indians.
-Fired one of the most beloved managers in the history of New York Sports.
-Saw the Red Sox come back from 3-1 down to defeat those same Indians which gave you so much trouble.
-Had the (soon to be named) American League MVP, and arguably the best player in the sport opt out of his contract, leaving millions on the table in search of millions more.
-Saw your bitter rivals then go on to sweep the Rockies in the World Series, giving them more championships (2) than post season series victories (0) since blowing that 3 games to none lead in 2004.

Yankee fans, my heart goes out to you.

Losing Torre may end up being the biggest blow, despite the fact many would argue that losing stray-rod hurts more. From a personnel standpoint, Alex Rodriguez is a player you simply cannot replace. His run production is off the charts and unless you have a way of plugging Albert Puljos into your line up, you’re gonna miss him. A lot.

However, Joe Torre is somebody that I can undoubtedly promise you is going to be missed. Making 12 consecutive post seasons was anything by automatic. The talent (and payroll) was always there, but somebody had to make sure it all fit together and performed. And Joe Torre, for all his faults, was able to do that to the sound of 4 championships, 6 pennants, 10 division crowns and 12 CONSECUTIVE playoff berths.

Whether its Donnie Baseball, Joe Girardi or Tony Pena, they have big shoes to fill. Not that I’m an expert or anything, but to save face after the Torre dismissal, Mattingly is the “True Yankee” choice, but the right fit is Girardi. He has experience (although only a year) but can handle young players and especially young pitchers, something the Yankees finally seem to have a few of.

But right now, I can relate if things seem like they are slowly spiraling out of control. But worry not because you are the mighty Yankee, the evil empire. You will go out and rebuild. Hopefully for your sake (and I believe you will) Mariano Rivera, Jorge Posada and Andy Pettitte are resigned (money shouldn’t be an issue with A-Rod saying bye).

For the immediate future, we can commiserate together as our misfortunes have gotten the best of us. But that beautiful thing about this beautiful game is that February is only 3 short months away, and before we know it pitchers and catchers will be reporting.

Until then, hang in there, because as we say in Flushing, theres always next year.

Or the year after that.

Sincerely,
Adam Fier
Disappointed Mets fan 12 years and counting…(hey- thats almost ironic…almost.)

October 29, 2007 Posted by | Sports | Leave a comment

Who Says You Cant Buy Happiness? Certainly Not Me!

10/27/07

Let me preface this post by first saying I just got home from the first night of Syracuse University celebrating Halloween. To answer your questions, yes I went out, yes I bought a costume, and yes I had the balls to wear it out (pictures will be up on facebook following the end of the Hallows Eve)

Anyway, being as though I didn’t drink enough (surprise, surprise) to impact me writing something, not to mention the fact I have nothing better to do with my time at 2:08 in the morning (unless you want to lend me 30 bucks for a monthly subscription to a dirty website…seriously) and theres something that has been bothering me ever since I was little. The phrase “you can’t buy happiness” is just an absolute crock of shit. And I am living proof.

If you have had the pleasure of being in either my room at home or my room at school, then several things jump out at you. First of all, I’m sure you’re thinking “damn, that is a neat fucking room for a 20 year old boy”. What can I say. I’m into keeping a neat room. Next undoubtedly is the abundance of expensive shit.

Without coming off as a complete spoiled brat, I admit to owning my very own 26 inch Sony HDTV, a Playstation 3, an XBOX 360, a Nintendo Wii, not one but two laptops, the new iPod touch (16 gigs…obviously), and the shelves of sports memorabilia, highlighted by a signed 8×10 picture of Michael Jordan, and signed baseballs by Mike Piazza and David Wright, plus baseball cards signed by Pedro Martinez, Whitey Ford, Jose Reyes, Derek Jeter and Cal Ripken Jr.

Then you open my closet, and you probably think I’m racially challenged based on A) the number of authentic or semi-authentic jerseys I own and B) the amount of sneakers I have purchased over the years to match them. 4 authentic Mets jerseys, 5 Knicks jerseys (3 authentic), 3 Mitchell and Ness jerseys (Ripken, Strawberry and Mantle), 3 Jordan Jerseys (1 authentic), 3 Syracuse jerseys, and the list goes on and on.

I hate to say it, but whenever I’m feeling somewhat down, I simply take a ride to the mall, and buy something. Now I’m sure you’re wondering if I’m spending my money, or my parents money. Well lets be honesty. How many of us really have our “own money”. Sure we have jobs over the summer and this and that, but when it comes down to it, our parents help us out far more often then they should. And if yours don’t, then i truly feel bad for you, because you’re missing out. But to answer the question, I would probably say of all the things I own, most of it was obtained through gifts and/or money that I used which my mother, not I, earned. But my mother always told me that she works the ridiculous hours she works so i can be happy. Now I’m not sure if she meant happy because shes never around, meaning I don’t ever have to deal with her nagging me…or the fact that her salary pays for a lot of my nice shit. Either way, shes right, and I win.

And so to anybody who wants to tell me that material items aren’t whats important in life and that having a family who loves you or a significant other who loves you…well I really cant disagree. But being as though I have a massively dysfunctional family and only an ex-significant other who no longer loves me, I’ll just have to settle for the pieces of technology which are going to run up quite an electrical bill when I’m not living on campus next year.

Oh and even though he probably wont see this and most of the people who do don’t know him…I want to give a shout out to Ross Kohan, who is as we speak in London and spending this semester in Spain. I miss him a lot, and cant wait until he comes home so we can touch each other inappropriately. Rossy and I are also living together next year in a house far nicer than any I will ever live in during my adult life, and I encourage anybody who ever wants to visit next year to spend a weekend with us.

Alright everyone, if you’ll excuse me I’m gonna go lay in bed and contemplate whether or not I’m truly happy. And while I’m doing, I’ll just have to remind myself I am by flipping on the TV, watching the beautiful quality of HDTV, and maybe pass the time with a game of Madden.

Be happy.

I know I am.

October 27, 2007 Posted by | Personal, Thoughts | Leave a comment

Oh the Places We’ll Go…While Sitting In Class

10/25/07

Live!…from the Maxwell Auditorium!…its Saturday Night!!!

Imagine? The day I’m sitting in a classroom on a Saturday night I’m dropping out and giving up on this whole education thing. I am sitting in class right now, trying to figure out if my professor is aware that the entire back row (myself included) is sitting on their laptops presumably doing everything imaginable other than taking notes.

Now there are a few factors at play, and anybody who has sat in on at least college course knows the deal. Professor will either display notes while talking giving you something to occupy yourself with, or if you’re really lucky he or she will not only provide you with notes in class, but online as well.

Now this is without question one of my favorite aspects of college. If you aren’t familiar with blackboard.com, its right up there with Milfhunter for revolutionary websites. And while you wont find that skeevy guy tracking down moderately attractive over aged madres, this site (if taken full advantage of by your professor) can provide you with a get out of class free pass. All of the lectures, in their power point form, waiting for you to open the night before a midterm to look at for the first time all year.

Have I ever done this before? I’ll give you three guesses and the first two don’t count. Now the obvious question is what happens if the professor still takes attendance? Unfortunately, I am answering that question at this very moment. Bring your computer, a good book or magazine, something to eat, and sit back for 80 minutes and come up with anything to do that isn’t taking notes.

If you do decided (or have no choice but) to go to class, there really are an endless number of things you can do to pass the time. Now I know sometimes we have those dreadful 3 hour marathons in which the University actually expects us to maintain our attention for a period of time I can’t even give my undivided attention when I’m watching the Super Bowl. But whether its an hour, 2 hours or 3…theres always stuff to do thats classroom friendly.

The Internet. I don’t know about you, but once it awhile I wonder what we would all be doing without it. I know I probably would have failed out of school before high school. But thanks whoever came up with this life saver of a concept (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_internet). No longer do I have wait hours at a time to see if I have any Facebook notifications (you know you all look forward to getting them). I can keep myself up to date on whats going on in the world of sports. I can talk to all of my friends with AIM. For those of you who actually care about school, you can even follow along with the Professor by accessing their website while they are lecturing. I read 3 newspapers a day, all online. I can update my fantasy teams. I can go shopping. I can browse campusfood.com and ponder what to have for lunch. The possibilities really are endless.

Literature. I really don’t buy into the concept that reading is beneficial for you, although that may only be because to this day, the only books I’ve ever finished cover to cover are the Goosebumps classics Night of the Living Dummy and the Haunted Mask.

..you know this brings you back…

Anyway, if reading is your thing, have a blast. Just be careful not to get caught because the consequences usually include being called out in front of 150 other people and embarrassed, not to mention the potential of being thrown out of a class you don’t want to be in anyway. If you went out of your way to make the trip to class, you might as well get your money’s worth and stick around.

Media. If you are clever enough to figure out the right spot in class and right angle to sit, bring your headphones and iPod away. If you’re really creative bring your laptap and your headphones and watch a movie or a TV show. Waste more time than you already have on youTube. And if you have figured out a way to successfully pull this one off, please let me know how.

So you see, going to class really isn’t as bad as it used to be. Thanks to the gift of modern technology, you can learn about Pearl Harbor while watching the incredibly shitty film version at the same time (although unless you’ve got a thing for Josh Hartnet, I’m not sure why you would. I’m actually more of a Ben Affleck guy myself, and while I know he too was in this movie, Armageddon was way better.).

My advice? If your professor does not take attendance, that their problem, not yours. If they put their lectures online, thats strike 2 against them. And if they put their lecture notes online, and don’t care if you show up?

Back to bed my friend.

October 25, 2007 Posted by | Thoughts | Leave a comment

Root, Root, Root for the Hope(less) Team

10/25/07

I really wish I could remember the exact day I became a sports fan. I doubt I was old enough to do much more than talk, eat and sleep (sounds a lot like my current lifestyle). I remember being so captivated by the feeling of winning, and how much better it felt than losing.

Props to my Dad for showing me how to play catch and for putting up a sweet basketball hoop up in my backyard. Props to eh Samuel Field Y for giving my Parents an overpriced and overrated place to send me after school everday, allowing me to play sports with other brats my age. And props to whoever invented sports, for giving me the greatest escape I could ask for from the burdens over everyday life…you know…talking, eating and sleeping.

Wait a second…why am I thanking anybody who has created something which for all the time and money and energy I spend investing myself in it- has never once rewarded me with the ultimate rush of victory?

I root for teams in every sport and we’ll include college for the sake of conversation, but when it comes down to it…there are only 3 teams in which I would really feel as though my life was complete should they ever win a championship. Im talking about the New York Liberty, Red Bulls and Long Island Ducks.

Ok so I probably care less about those 3 teams than I care about hearing about when Britney Spears will be able to visit her kids again (alright so I’m fixated on Britney, lets move on). But when it comes to sports, I pour my heart and soul into the New York Mets, New York Jets, and New York Knicks.

I am 20 years old. Since 1987 (20 years ago for those unable to keep track), would you like to guess how many combined championships those teams have won?

You guessed it. Zero.

Alright so I couldn’t even spell Mets until I was probably 2 (MAGNET STUDENT? I THINK SO!) and I couldn’t tell you what a baseball was until I was probably 5 or 6. So even since I was old enough to care about sports, I have never felt the rush of seeing my team celebrating as the last one standing.

I’ve seen some close calls, notably in 2000 when the Mets went to the World Series. I also had the Knicks in the NBA finals in 1999 and the Jets in the AFC Championship game the year before that. I have gotten close, but each time it seemed my team was on the cusp of achieving greatness, we would go on to take multiple steps backward in the years to follow.

To make matters worse, I somehow ended up with friends who experienced the exact opposite of me. Yankee fans? 4 championships before turning 14 years old. Boston natives? 3 Superbowls, 1 (working on 2) World Series ring(s) and now the Celtics are closer to winning a championship than the Knicks are (then again, so are the other 29 teams).

Every year begins and ends the same way. A fresh start filled with hope, and a disappointing end filled with regret. The Mets went out of their way to make this past season extra heart breaking by pulling off the most catastrophic regular season collapse in the history of baseball.

The Jets actually did me a favor by not making me wait until the last day of the season to break my heart. It only took them 7 weeks. Thanks boys.

And the Knicks? I guess theres some hope. Isiah Thomas seems like he’ll be spending the season on the court as opposed to in court. They keep saying the Eastern conference is up for grabs…but anybody who watches the Knicks knows we never box out…so thats unlikely.

So baring a miracle, and I get the feeling the Mets (1969,1986) and Jets (1969) already had theirs, I can look forward to another few months of hope, followed by a few more months of regret, only to do it all over again next year.

October 25, 2007 Posted by | Sports | 1 Comment

Hey Newhouse: How you like me now?

10/24/2007

Dear S.I. Newhouse School of Communications,

Alright so you get the last laugh, considering you’re the most prestigious communications school in the country, and I was ranked 303 out of 891 in my high school graduating class. But you told me I wasn’t good enough to be a member of your club, and deferred me to the (not 1/1000 as prestigious) School of Education where I am now suffering through field placements and lesson plans.

Regardless, my voice can finally be seen in print! (sort of…not really)

Even if its on a lousy, free…no grade school education required blogging website with millions of lifeless people like myself wasting their time.

But I would like to formally welcome anybody desperate enough to waste their time reading about how I waste mine.

Remember, nobody (myself) is forcing you to be here, so try to keep your complaints to yourself. If you want to make fun of me and insult me for having a blog…well go ahead because I probably would be doing the same thing.

Anyway, I was reading ESPN.com, like i do everyday in my classes (the only reason I even go to class is because i can bring my laptop with me) and I was reading an article written by Bill Simmons. He is a bigtime Boston sports fan, and this particular article Simmons was talking about the Red Sox winning game six of the ALCS. In the article, he talks about the kind of sports fan he is, and never have been able to put into such perfect words the way I watch sports, except minus the fact he gets paid to do so. Anyway, here’s what he had to say..

“I write about sports for a living. When I’m watching a game, I have trained myself to look for every possible angle and every conceivable scenario. I am thinking about potential jokes, observations, column angles and everything else. I am prepared for everything. I am a trained professional at watching sports and eventually translating my feelings into words.” (Simmons, Oct. 2007)

If you know me, and you know how I get with sports…thats me in a nutshell.

And now I too can translate my feelings into words.

October 25, 2007 Posted by | Personal | Leave a comment