John Lackey sounds like…..

Ray Romano. I can’t believe I never caught it. THEY EVEN LOOK ALIKE.
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I just watched his intro into the Sox organization and I started giggling like a 12 year old boy who just heard the “P” word ( You can figure out.)

If you ever get the chance, look up the the press meet and just close your eyes and listen. I promise you, the next thing you expect to hear is Ray’s dad yell “HOLY CRAP!”

I love that man.

A Quick Cliff Lee Cogitation

 Just a random thought on the imminent Halladay-Lee-Other People trade….Cliff Lee gets traded to the Phils mid-season to help bolster an already well-rounded club. He exceeds expectations and pitches his heart out throwing complete game gems left and right to take his team to not only the postseason, but to another World Series. He manhandles the Yanks in Game 1 AT YANKEE STADIUM no less, and gives the Phils a BIG advantage.

Apparently, the rest of the team decided to let him do all the work for the rest of the Series and falter to the Yankees in 6.

How does the Phillies repay him? They trade him to the Mariners.

‘Nuff said.

Pizza Hut Cheese Sticks and Roy Halladay

  By now you have probably asked yourself how these delectable finger foods have any relevance to one of the best pitchers in baseball. Well my friends, the answer is incredibly simple.

Dirk Nowitzki. And Sig Hansen. And a Rookie of the Year debate that lasted 2.36 minutes because of said Pizza Hut Cheese Sticks.

I know, I know. I can’t wait to explain it as well.

First, let’s start with the RoTY debacle. My friend, The Snowman ( A round caucasian male who is only missing a carrot for a nose to be mistaken as the real thing) and I were at Pizza Hut not too long ago. As our appetizer arrived, we embarked on this topic that usually lasts for most baseball fanatics a good 10 to 20 minutes. He was upset that Marlins left fielder Chris Coghlan won over the Pirates’ CF Andrew McCutchen, who he thought did better overall throughout the season.

I didn’t disagree, but when The Snowman speaks, you listen. He is a bright fellow, to say the least. Blessed with not only the gift of gab, his knowledge is vast and makes many people look like Bill Belichick on a 4th and short situation ( I HATE the Patriots. Not just because they cheat, but because Tom Brady is severely overrated and Belichick is the biggest female hygienic device in all of sports. But that’s for another blog.)

He starts talking about how Coghlan’s numbers dropped in the second half as he plows into a cheese stick, when something amazing happens. The conversation more or less went like this:

Me: So, what about McCutchen? How’d he do? ( I don’t follow RotY because, frankly, I just don’t care.)
Snowman: (Silent as he eats and checks his Blackberry)
Me: (Awkward silence) ….Well?
Snowman: Uh, what?
Me: What about McCutchen?!
Snowman: I don’t remember.

And that’s about it.

I’d like to believe the cheese sticks hold some sort of agent that causes neuron degeneration imbued with its yummy goodness just to create situations like these. More research is needed though.

And now, Roy Halladay.

I have proof that Halladay is a clone experiment to bring the world entertainment. After years of toiling through countless websites and magazines and TV programs, I have discovered a plot may be at foot. Or at hand. You get the idea.

Here are the findings of my research thanks to The Snowman.

Roysigdirk.JPG This, my brothers and only friends, is what I call the Sigroydirk Experiment. Its obvious now that the truth has come out that whatever masterminds hatched this plot has only one thing in mind, complete world domination. They want to bring fantastic entertainment to us through the wonders of genetic manipulation. Take Sig Hansen, captain of the Norwegian and star of Deadliest Catch. He comes with a tough European disposition and a dry humor that makes us all want to sail out to the Bering Sea in January and hunt for Opilio crab. I know I do.

Then there is Dirk ( A.K.A. Dirky Dirk as he is known in the Euro rap circles, if I’m not mistaken) Nowitzki. Also coming from a strange European land, he stormed onto the NBA like a viking to a village. Without the rape and pillage, of course.

Maybe.

I’ll look into it.

And finally, Roy Halladay. With a devastating sinker and a changeup that makes you look just plain goofy, he’s considered one of the best pitchers to come around in a while. Regardless of what team you love, watching him pitch is something all can enjoy, and in fact, do.

On that note, I shall wrap up this segment of Carpe Diem with something you all will enjoy. Here to get you in the Christmas spirit, is a lovely rendition of O Holy Night.

Carpe Diem,

David Anthony Rufo

I’m Still Alive

 I will be posting my latest entry by mid-afternoon today instead of Saturday Dec. 12 due to a severe lack of initiative.

So please, don’t give up on me yet. Just re-read my last entry to bring back those warm and fuzzy feelings you and I once shared.

You know you want to.

How to make the Winter Meetings cool again

      So let me give you the gist of things. I had about 2 solid hours of sleep yesterday from 7 am to 9 am, did Christmas shopping from 10 am to 1:30 pm, and ate Wendy’s from 2 pm to 3 pm ( I took a while considering I still hadn’t officially woken up yet, plus Wendy’s is something I want to cherish for as long as possible because, that itself, is like Christmas. If you rush it, you won’t be able to enjoy it and  truly understand what it all really means.) Around 4 pm, after watching another phenomenal episode of Deadliest Catch on Netflix, I started to doze off. My girlfriend, who was with me all day, said I should take a nap for a while. I wholeheartedly agreed. She said she would come wake me up after she watched another episode, which is fine considering that I watched 7 episodes in 2 days, and she’s seen only 3 of them in about a week ( I’m telling you, I REALLY like this show.) So here we are now, it’s 12:49 am as I type this, and I swear to you, I don’t know what just happened. I think around 5:15-ish, I remember her asking me if I was getting up, and replied something to the likes of, “sme stratal in I dun othr n smowl”, which of course in standard English translates to “I think I’m going to stay in bed for just a little bit longer if you don’t mind.” That, I guess prompted her to leave. I need answers. And maybe professional help. In due time, I suppose.

      Now that we got that out on the table, I present to my list of ideas (demands) on how to make the Winter Meetings appeal to the masses. Now I don’t know about you, but seeing that the meetings have been moved to the Indy Convention Center got me more giddy than a 6th grade girl meeting Zac Effron. Or is it the guy from Twilight who looks like a deformed lizard? I just can’t keep up anymore, I need to re-subscribe to Tiger Beat. But, I digress.

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The MLB can make this ‘The Winter Meetings To End All Winter Meetings’ with my ideas (demands). Here’s just one of them: When a ranked free agent can’t decide by the end of the Meetings what team he wants to sign with, he can have the option of getting the GMs of the teams he’s interested in and bring them just 4.3 miles to the northwest of the Convention Center to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Here, there will be nationally televised events in which the GMs will settle their differences on the track for the, oh say, “ROY HALLADAY 500.” Or perhaps the, “JASON BAY 300.” Or, prehaps the, “FERNANDO RODNEY
125″ ( Hey, it could happen. And the reason I only put 125 laps is because, well, would you want to race more than that for Rodney? I thought not.) Plus, who of us here wouldn’t want to see Brain Cashman and Theo Epstien race to the checkered flag for the rights to claim Halladay? I, for one hate the concept of NASCAR, but they would get most of the MLB demographic to watch at least 1 of there races, and that would probably make them lots of money with advertisments and ticket sales and what not. Oh, and if your thinking, ‘What about the weather?’ just stop. Weather will not be a factor because I’m sure most GMs would race through a blizzard to get their hands on Matt Holliday. I think this idea is borderline foolproof.

      For those free agents who don’t have that luxury ( I’m looking at you, Craig Counsell) they have the option of the less exciting, still marketable Ro-Sham-Bo, or Rock Paper Scissors. Look, if ESPN has the cojones to air Dominoes Tournaments, they should have no problem snatching up this cash cow. The rules are simple, win 2 out of 3 and you get the rights to the player. GMs can only use rock, paper, or scissor hand signals. Illegal maneuvers include  volcano, gun, and the super scissor. Special ‘do or die’ hand signals for when you are down are lizard and Spock. For an idea of what beats what, I have created a chart for such events.
Game-Rock-Paper-Scissors-Lizard-Spock-Review.jpg      While these are the primary ideas, I have many more in the developing stages. My ostrich jousting idea is still up in the air due to the fact that Homeland Security will still not allow me to bring these fine creatures over the border. The Dance-off is a sure-fire winner, but every time I think if Billy Beane dropping hand stands and head-spins while Jim Leyland busts out some trash talk, I have to check my reality and wonder how this ever occurred in my mind. I’m just about done here so if you have any ideas, please send them my way and when I deliver these ideas to Bud Selig and the board, I will be sure to give credit where credit is due. But I can’t promise anything.
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Carpe Diem,

David Anthony Rufo
     

                        
                                                            

The Crimson Sunrise

       “‘Seize the Day’ / I heard him say / Life will not always be this way / Look around / Hear the sounds / Cherish your life while you’re still around…” This is a line from progressive metal giants Dream Theater’s  25 minute epic, “A Change of Seasons.” You may be asking yourself, ‘Wait a minute, why is he talking about music on a sports blog? This guy sucks!’ Well, I can assure you 7/8 of that statement can, and will, be explained. The other 1/8 is, well, maybe that will change. This entry hits a personal subject matter that I’m sure many of you have gone through, and although it doesn’t center around sports, do not worry. My other posts will, for the most part, be centered around sports, and most importantly, Yankee  baseball.

     Ah, where are my manners? I haven’t introduced myself. If you have not read my bio yet, here’s me in a nutshell: Dave, mid 20’s, Yankees, and Music. So I have now essentially eliminated all reasons for you or anyone else to read my bio. Why I created one is beyond me as well. Now that we have that cleared up, let’s get down to the matter of things. The phrase ‘Carpe Diem'; translated from Latin is not, ‘Seize the Carp’ but in fact, ‘Seize the Day,’ has been a part of my life for some time now. I discovered it not only in music, but also in movies as well. Most of you probably know that this mentioned in ‘Dead Poet’s Society’, in which the theme of the film is to take advantage of all of what life has to offer, or seize the day. Now that I have pounded this phrase into your temporal lobe, we can move on as to why this mantra not only means a lot to me, but to others as well.

      Let’s start with someone you all may already know. Let’s try, Derek Jeter. This guy is a  good example of ‘Carpe Diem’ and what it stands for. He came from a small town, and one of my favorite words to say, Kalamazoo, MI and took advantage of every opportunity thrown at him to become what he and what millions of others have always dreamed of, to be a Yankee. But its not just the Captain who makes a good example. Take Josh Hamilton, he was damn near nailing his own coffin the way he abused himself with drugs and alcohol. But after realizing he wasn’t only hurting himself, but his loved ones as well, he did something that is just awe inspiring. He fought through every debilitating moment of withdrawal, every passing day of rehab, every month it took to get his body and mind back on the game he loves to play. Eventually, in 2007, he came back not with a whimper, but with a thunderous boom putting up the kind of numbers he should have been and was nominated for Rookie of the Year. Speaking of thunderous booms, I will never forget watching him during the 2008 Home Run Derby and seeing him massacre what once was a baseball into the clear summer night and into the facade of the old Yankee Stadium. After the Derby, Hamilton said: “This, was like living the dream out,
because like I’ve said, I didn’t know the ending to that dream.” It’s stories like these that make me realize how true ‘Carpe Diem’ is.

      Now we move on to lesser known folk who live by this creed, myself. I was 15 when my father, Anthony, was diagnosed with the latter stages of cancer of the spine. My family rarely talked about it, but we all knew in the back of our minds what could happen if it wasn’t treated immediately. In the early morning December 30, 2002, my 16th birthday, I laid in bed and peered through my ajar door to see my father leaving the house with some family friends. I didn’t get up to say anything, it was early and looking back, I was just plain lazy. I found out later that day that he contracted pneumonia from his weakened state and had to be kept at the hospital for treatment. A few days go by, still no word on when he’s coming home. A week creeps up and I find out he’s been quarantined because he is so sick. Finally, on January 9, 2003, my father goes under cardiac arrest mid afternoon and passes away. I came home late that day after staying after school, to see my family’s friends had returned when my mother came in from the kitchen and broke the news to me. I remember immediately thinking, ‘Why didn’t I say good-bye the day he left? Why couldn’t I just say something?’ All these questions and more whipped around my mind in such a flurry I couldn’t sleep for days, weeks even. I blamed myself like everyone else who goes through these things do. But eventually I pushed into the back of my mind, until 2 years later by mother succumbs to illness and is hospitalized as well. My sister came down from college to stay with me in our home as we anxiously awaited our mothers return, but on an early June morning, our phone rang. My sister picked it up, still dazed from her awoken slumber as I, when she let out a blood curdling scream I will never forget. Deep down, I knew what happened, but I ran to her room anyway to find out the grim news of my mothers passing. She too, as it turns out, went under cardiac arrest when she departed. We were now alone, scared and wondering, ‘What do we do now?’

      6 years later, we have moved on with our lives and grew stronger with each day. Thanks to our family and friends, we managed to find new homes and happily live new lives. My sister now lives in the city and just gave birth to a beautiful girl, Chloe Ann, while I stayed in good old Dutchess county where I have lived all my life. I’m sorry if I made you upset, that won’t happen often in this blog. This blog will be (hopefully) full of laughs and (hopefully) full of fun (and readers too…..hopefully.) But this was necessary for you to understand what I now know, and that is ‘Carpe Diem.’ Every moment passed is one that will never be brought back, so why not make the most of it? I wish I did with my parents, and I hope you all can do the same, whether it is through sports, music, Parcheesi, whatever floats your boat.

      Some may appreciate and understand what I’m doing. Others may see it
has an escape to a hard life that I don’t want to face. But it is at
this time, I feel like I want to be heard by others. Say what you will,
I will still choose what to do, when to do it, how to do it. This may sound
like a rebel cry, but it is something that each and every one of us
has, and that is the power to seize the day. To take advantage of every
waking moment spent alive on this earth. This is why you will see me end all my posts with ‘Carpe Diem,’ it’s not just a signature to me. They are words to live by. So, look around, hear the
sounds. Live your life while your still around.

Carpe Diem,

David Anthony Rufo 

     

(more…)

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