Friday, April 3, 2009

DISPATCHES FROM THE FIELD: In Which Rickey Noshes With Joe Girardi

Having braved some incredibly bad weather and faulty intel to get into Manhattan (turns out the Hard Rock Cafe on 47th Street has been closed for several years and the only Hard Rock is in Times Square--whoops) Rickey's reporting in with a recap of the events of the Joe Girardi breakfast with Mike Francessa this past Friday.

Finally locating the venue, Rickey and his buddy wasted no time gorging themselves silly at the sumptuous buffet, opting for the hormone free eggs over the A-Rod style eggs. Then the interview began, conducted in an informal "Inside The Actor's Studio" fashion. We'd report in on what was said, but it was mostly a lot of talk of Yankee tradition, the Steinbrenner legacy, and how nice and unassuming a fellow Johnny Damon is. To be perfectly honest, Rickey was far more interested in going back for second helpings of the tasty french toast bites they were serving at the buffet. Below, in snarky caption format, follow Rickey's comments on the pictures he took.

Hm, three orange juices and two bottled waters? Sweet fancy moses, that's a lot of fluids. Why do speakers always demand ten gallons of liquids at events like this? Are they planning on competing in a triathlon afterward? And more importantly, where is Mike Francessa's trademark Diet Coke?Oh, whew, there it is. We had to sneak around the stage to get a better shot of it. This, ladies and gentlemen, is investigative blogging at it's finest.

No, that white hot light isn't Rickey's camera playing tricks on your eyes. The omnipotent Mike Francessa actually has it stipulated in his contract with WFAN that he be basked in a heavenly glow at all public engagements.

Once the interview was over, the Q&A session began. Rickey walked around to the other side of the stage, watched a few folks ask some questions, and then it was Rickey's turn.

Rickey nervously stepped up to the plate and swung away. (Note Girardi's "who the hell is this scrawny prick?" posture). Here's verbatim what was asked:

"Hi Joe, thanks for taking my question! I'm actually a life-long Mets fan. (slight boos from the audience) I won these tickets when I called in to WFAN thinking it was for Mets tickets. Uh, apparently not. (laughter from the audience--Rickey knows how to work a crowd). So since I'm here anyway, I guess my question is: from the Yankees skipper to a die hard Mets fan, what do you think of your guys' chances against us during interleague play this season?"

And then he and Francessa responded by good naturedly talking about the excitement of interleague play, blah blah blah. Yeah, it was a stupid heckling question, but it was fun and it caught everybody off guard. Also, it was helluva lot better than the boilerplate WHY'S JOBA NOT IN DA BULLPEN? comments. If anyone finds a video of the event on YouTube, please let Rickey know--he'd love to see it.

Anyhow, then the session ended and the obligatory autograph signings commenced. Who's the guy wearing the Superman t-shirt? Mike's security detail? We'd like to think that Mike Francessa can afford a better bodyguard than that... If any of our readers are interested in an exciting career in personal protection, get those resumes in!

Once wonders: how much could a baseball signed by Mike Francessa possibly be worth? A ham sandwhich? Possibly even two ham sandwhiches?

We're not sure about you, but Rickey hasn't been to many of these sorts of events. Most likely because they're pretty sycophantic. Everyone lines up for autographs: there's the young and starry eyed budding sports fans ...and then there's everybody else. The intense sports fans. Grown adults who should be out looking for gainful employment rather than sitting in the Hard Rock Cafe at 8AM on a Friday morning hoping to get a glimpse of a watered down iteration of Jimmy the Greek. We didn't nab a picture of him, but Bruce from Bayside was in attendance, and yes, he is every bit as unseemly as you'd expect.

Sign Joe, sign as fast as your fingers will allow!

Good lord, is Francessa doing the Hustle?

The goofy guy in the middle who keeps on wringing his hands like a nefarious Bond supervillain is Mark Chernoff, the program director at WFAN. He's a serious doofus, just like you. And he's landed himself a fantastic job. Moral of the story: don't give up on that dream of breaking into sports broadcasting.

Damnit guys, you know I can't go with you two standing there watching!

And then, it was finally time to meet the big man himself. Rickey sidled up next to Mike Francessa and had his buddy take a snapshot. Hey, is it just Rickey or does it kind of look like he's related to Mike?

And then Rickey, feeling like he had to say something meaningful, uttered the following ridiculous sentence: "I just wanted to say that you've brought a lot of joy to my father."

OK, there are two major problems with this statement. First, it makes Rickey's father sound like a frail bedridden man who tunes into WFAN as a source of solace and relies upon Mike Francessa for some sort of psychic tether to life. Rickey's dad is in fact healthy as a horse and in prime physical condition. Secondly, the suggestion that Mike Francessa brings any semblance of happiness to Rickey's dad's life is completely and utterly untrue. In reality, the opinions voiced on Francessa's radio program have probably raised Papa Henderson's blood pressure more than any stock market tumble, war, or tax hike ever possibly could.

But hey, it sounded like a good thing to say at the time. Anyway, it was a fun morning and if nothing else, it got Rickey excited for the upcoming baseball season. Enjoy the weekend folks, we'll back on Monday.

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14 comments:

Mike said...

Love your question. Well done.

Bob said...

Now that I have seen an actual photo of the man behind Rickey, I don't think I am able to visit this blog again. It's not that you are a bad looking dude or anything, you just don't fit the persona you have built.

Goodbye and good luck.

Bob

Rickey Henderson said...

Out of curiosity, what exactly did you expect Rickey to look like?

maybe i can help... said...

I was expecting something like THIS.

Bob said...

Out of curiosity, what exactly did you expect Rickey to look like?

suppose Rickey Henderson was the default, but I guess it was just better not knowing.

George said...

Well, if you looked like HST now, that would make you confetti blown from a cannon over a Colorado ranch. So it's best you look like you.

Smitty said...

In reality, the opinions voiced on Francessa's radio program have probably raised Papa Henderson's blood pressure

And to any true sports fan, that kind of blood-boiling rage is indeed true happiness! So, you see, he does bring your dad happiness.

The fact that Rickey looks as he does in reality makes this blog even funnier. You should see what Bob looks like. Hint: it's not a car.

Bob said...

The fact that Rickey looks as he does in reality makes this blog even funnier. You should see what Bob looks like. Hint: it's not a car.

Actually the funny thing is, Rickey thinks I am the black guy in all this.

Rickey Henderson said...

Wait, Bob's not black?

So that delightfully tastless joke Rickey made after election day about Bob taking over ATK, that was all for naught?

Smitty said...

that was all for naught?

Bob is as black as I am.

Bob said...

So that delightfully tastless joke Rickey made after election day about Bob taking over ATK, that was all for naught?

For naught sir. I figured you never read it, but in reference to your(not so tasteless)joke, I responded here:

http://aroundthekeg.blogspot.com/2008/11/bobs-best-my-five-favorite-images-from.html

Chris C said...

lol that guy in the spiderman shirt is one of my old fraternity brothers from college! He runs special events at the Hard Rock Cafe.

Frigging small world huh?

I'll tell him about your post.

John said...

I am not Mike's bodyguard I actually run the special events at the Hard Rock as Chris C said.
By the way if I was a bodyguard why am I a bad one?
I like your assesment of the day and sorry you did not know we moved from 57th street almost 4 years ago.
You are exactly what I think a Mets fan would look like.
Keep up the good stuff I will start reading your blog its pretty funny.

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