Every time I turn on the radio or look at my newspaper—yes, I live in 1975—I'm bombarded with tedious, repetitive, non-news news articles about the current state of the fiscal cliff negotiations. Every time I turn the sports page, I see a new story about stalled negotiations with R.A. Dickey, and I experience a tinge of Vida Blue. I mean deja vu. You get the idea.
Even when the negotiations began, we knew they were just for show. These talks aren’t about getting results—they’re about posturing. Pleasing the base. Flexing muscles. Rattling the saber. Measuring dicks. Since then, talks have been utterly stalled, but both sides keep releasing leaks and press releases trumpeting progress, in a transparent attempt to make the other side look more petty, more greedy, more vain. It’s an ego contest, plain and simple. And when the stakes are this high, that’s the kind of contest no one can win.
Am I talking about the fiscal cliff or the New York Mets? I have no idea.
I'm a serous fan of R.A. Dickey's, partly because he's amazing, partly because he's from Nashville. I saw him speak last month at my dad's high school—they're both alumni—and found him to be exactly as charming as expected. I even shook his hand! But as much as it would bum me out to see him traded, I'll survive, so long as the Mets get something worthwhile in return. The Mets don't have much in the way of prospects right now—either literally or figuratively—and hope for the future is something worth trading for.
One more thing. Writing that article reminded me of this short Times piece about Dickey's bats, which he names after mythical swords—one reason that, if he must be traded, I hope to god it's for a National League team. It's a five 'graf story that yielded the best correction I have ever seen in a major newspaper. Reprinted here in full:
This post has been revised to reflect the following correction:
Correction: May 8, 2011
An item in the Extra Bases baseball notebook last Sunday misidentified, in some editions, the origin of the name Orcrist the Goblin Cleaver, which Mets pitcher R. A. Dickey gave one of his bats. Orcrist was not, as Dickey had said, the name of the sword used by Bilbo Baggins in the Misty Mountains in “The Hobbit”; Orcrist was the sword used by the dwarf Thorin Oakenshield in the book. (Bilbo Baggins’s sword was called Sting.)