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A Few Points Shy of the High Score
Sunday, September 19, 2004  
Went to the Yankee-Red Sox game yesterday afternoon at the Stadium. Here's an interesting statistic:

Ticket (bleachers): $18.
One Miller Lite Beer: $8.

That's right--$8 *per beer*. For Miller Lite. Christ, I can buy an entire six-pack of Sam Adams for that much. By the third inning, I realized I was on pace to spend $100-plus for the day on beer alone.

With the remains of the hurricane threatening, the stadium lights blazing against the black clouds, and the lopsided score (the game was never close), it was a surreal afternoon, to say the least. In the later innings, the game itself faded into the background, and we spent more time joking and playing grab-ass in the stands. Trying to decide who was going to make the next beer-run took precedence over who was standing at the plate.

Have to say, the Red Sox fans have balls. They showed up in droves, proudly wearing their jerseys and caps. (I even passed Stephen King outside the stadium.) Red Sox fans even bought out a huge block of tickets way up in the nosebleeds. They're truly fearless this year. (Though the fan sitting in front of me, in shame, put a jacket on to cover his Derek Lowe jersey by the second inning yesterday.) You'd think behavior like that would merit ass-kickings, but aside from a little friendly baiting here and there, the whole thing was relatively civil.

Saw the Hopkins-De La Hoya fight last night. Disappointing, to say the least. Oscar was on his way to getting a beating, so it was probably for the best that he went down, and stayed down, when he did. Hopkins, once he realized De La Hoya couldn't hurt him, was fearless. I'd braced myself for drama--$54.95 worth of drama--and came away feeling hollow and a little duped.

Had one hell of a time getting home last night. One of the great things about NYC, unlike London and Boston, is that the subways run all night. Well, they sort of run anyway. Here's my commute from last night:
0. Entered subway at 28th Street and Park Avenue at 12:30.
1. Took downtown 6 train to Broadway/Lafayette.
2. Realized that F trains weren't stopping there (they were being rerouted over the A line), so I crossed over to the uptown platform and took an uptown F to West 4th.
3. Heard from a subway employee that F trains were indeed running, but that they weren't stopping downstairs on the F tracks, but only upstairs on the A tracks.
4. Caught A train to Jay Street-Borough Hall (breathed sigh of relief, because I was in Brooklyn at this point).
5. F trains were being rerouted from there, so I took an F one stop to Hoyt-Schemerhorn. (The F and the G do this switch sometimes on weekends, for no discernible reason.)
6. At Hoyt-Schemerhorn, I switched to the G train (finally), which was making local stops along the F line in Brooklyn.
7. Unlocked the front door to my apartment at 2:15 am.

Granted, I was half-drunk on Rheingold when I was trying to figure all this out. But I'm an expert at this point, having ridden subways for eight long years now. Pity the poor bastards who are new to all of this. Hell, they're probably still down there, trying to sort things, even now as I type this...

Uptown, downtown, going backwards to go forwards, etc. At some point, you have to laugh at the awful absurdity of it all. Me, peering at these indecipherable posters the MTA tacks up everywhere ("F trains run over the G line from 12:01am Sunday until..."), trying to make sense of them, trying to find my way home. It was as if the gods were having a laugh at my expense, testing my resolve, seeing how much horseshit I could take. The whole journey had the oh-come-on-now/give-me-a-break quality of that old Scorcese movie, After Hours.

And when I finally surfaced in Brooklyn in the early hours of the morning, it was positively cathartic, I tell you.

1:19 PM

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