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Strange rumblings in Los Angeles

Apr 2, 2012, 8:33 AM EDT

Laguna Beach

I got off an airplane about a half hour ago after taking a red eye flight back to Ohio from Los Angeles, where I spent the weekend. Because I don’t sleep well on airplanes, today is going to be … something less than lucid.

Anyway, the purpose of my trip was not baseball, but I had a couple of baseball observations I’ll share simply because reading more about Ubaldo Jimenez and Troy Tulowitzki seems daunting on as little sleep as I am operating:

I was in a drinking establishment taking my refreshment one evening and the bartender, noting my baseball cap, began to discuss baseball with me. He is a native of L.A. and a life-long Dodgers fan, so I asked him what he felt about Magic Johnson and all of that.  He was happy about it, of course, but he said it was no big deal.

“How do you mean?” I said. “Seems like a big deal to me.”

“Ah, they were going to be OK anyway,” he said.

“You think so?”

“Sure,” he said. “They’re the Dodgers.”

In that I think there is some essential essence of fandom that I don’t think about very often. It’s not … rational.  And that’s probably good for most franchises, frankly.

The second baseball observation of the weekend came when I was driving around, and it involved billboards. I noticed one of those “El Hombre” billboards with Albert Pujols on it. I thought those were taken down because Pujols hated them, but I guess not.

I also noticed way more Dodgers billboards then I ever remember seeing. They were cool, with pictures of old Dodgers sort of morphing into current ones.  Think Maury Wills-to-Davey Lopes-to-Dee-Gordon. There was one with sluggers too, resulting in Matt Kemp but I didn’t see who the other guys were because I was driving and driving in Los Angeles terrifies me.

Finally: I didn’t win the Mega Millions on Friday night, but know that if I did (a) I’d still keep blogging here because it’s fun; but (b) I’d probably be doing it from a house on a beach not unlike this one I was gawking at yesterday. When you get a chance, someone remind why I live in Ohio again.

  1. easports82 - Apr 2, 2012 at 8:44 AM

    I’m gonna go with the people in Ohio are “real” and you probably don’t want to have to put on sunscreen every day.

  2. Francisco (FC) - Apr 2, 2012 at 8:58 AM

    Because it would be terribly expensive and exhausting to build an entirely new lair in L.A.

  3. frankvzappa - Apr 2, 2012 at 8:58 AM

    It could be worse. You could have said Nebraska.

  4. Gobias Industries - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:03 AM

    C’mon, man, surely you can get views like that on Lake Erie. The Palm Trees probably wouldn’t survive the winter, but still.

  5. kdeval31 - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:17 AM

    The “I” key on Craig’s computer must be beat to hell.

  6. sdelmonte - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:18 AM

    I can’t imagine even the most optimistic Mets fan – I think I’m it – ever saying, “it’s the Mets, they’ll be OK.” And for that matter, I can’t imagine a Brooklyn-era Dodgers fan saying that, either.

    But at least since they got to LA, and maybe from the day Mr Rickey arrived in Brooklyn, this is a franchise that does at least somewhat well. They survived Campanis and outlasted Rupert Murdoch, and still have one of the best pitchers and one of the best hitters around even after McCourt. It might not happen overnight, but they will rise to top again, I am sure.

  7. The Common Man - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:24 AM

    “When you get a chance, someone remind why I live in Ohio again.”

    Proximity to Shelley Duncan?

    • cur68 - Apr 2, 2012 at 10:23 PM

      That’s gotta be it. TCM FTW.

  8. 4d3fect - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:26 AM

    If you moved out there you’d likely have plenty of company, Craig. Most of the folks I met while living there were ex Ohio– seemingly more of them than “locals”, whatever that may mean anymore.

  9. 4d3fect - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:31 AM

    And is that a HST style headline I detect there?

    • Craig Calcaterra - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:33 AM

      Si.

      • 4d3fect - Apr 2, 2012 at 9:35 AM

        Now to make with the attorney jokes, no?

  10. sportsdrenched.com - Apr 2, 2012 at 10:30 AM

    In that I think there is some essential essence of fandom that I don’t think about very often. It’s not … rational

    If you’re a fan of any team in any sport you’re already off the Rational Reservation.

    After all, we root for a group of grown men we don’t know, aren’t from the city who’s uniform they put on, and we pay money to watch them play a game.

    Fandom does not further our careers or fall into the pursuit of our basic needs for food, water, shelter, and procreation. In fact, in most situations being a fan hinders the pursuit of those other four.

    I’m not condeming fandom, because I spend a lot of frivolious hours being one. Just understand that being a fan of anything in the first place is completely unrational.

    • davidpom50 - Apr 3, 2012 at 4:42 PM

      I’m having a bad day, but this made me smile… a lot. Thank you, sportsdrenched.com.

  11. notsofast10 - Apr 2, 2012 at 10:55 AM

    That is strange! Weather patterns tend to move from West to East and with Jason Werth on the East Coast, not sure what “rumblings” could be heard?

  12. yankeesgameday - Apr 2, 2012 at 10:57 AM

    Craig, what were you doing outside my house? You should have come in for some Johnny Walker Blue and watched the Yanks and marlins with me on mlb.tv. them we’d pop over to Jen aniston’s for our Sunday night bbq. You really do need to ditch Ohio.

  13. racksie - Apr 2, 2012 at 12:10 PM

    Two words, Craig: White Castle.

    • blabidibla - Apr 2, 2012 at 1:22 PM

      In-n-out FTW

      • dad2twins - Apr 2, 2012 at 2:29 PM

        Tommy’s! In-n-Out fries are pretty mediocre especially compared with what you all back east enjoy from Five Guys.
        Craig, you would’ve needed to win the megamillions lottery or sell an MLB team to buy a place on the beach. If you needed further reminders on why you want to stay in Ohio, looking at real estate listings out here would do it.
        As a Dodger fan, I feel that we’re finally coming to the end of the Interregnum, but it’s going to take a few seasons for the new owners to make their impact known, whether that ends up being good or bad. The one thing that will be immediate is that fans will return to Dodger Stadium this season, stopping off at Philippe’s before they head up the hill.

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