All posts by misschatter

Desperate Real World Nats Fans of DC

First off, congratulations go out to Manny Acta for being named the next skipper of the Indians! Guess I’m going to have to go on a road trip to Cleveland when the Nats face them in interleague play right after my birthday in June (woo!).

Next big thing – Nats fan reality TV?

IMG Studios, a respected, established production company in Washington
DC, is casting for a TV series about die-hard Nationals fans who have
such an intense devotion to the lovable Nats that they have had
trouble balancing their “real life” responsibilities with their
devotion for their team. The person or group of friends must find it
hard to balance an active social life, romantic relationship, work or
family with the “other person” (Nationals) in their life. They must
be willing to participate in a reality series that follows them for a
specific period of time, and cannot be camera shy. If you are
interested in being a part of this reality series for television,
please send IMG a biographical paragraph and photo to We will follow up if there is interest.

Thank you.

[Wheels start spinning…] Yep, that’s me to a T. But… what if all my flaws are suddenly there on tv? Can’t ruin my (cough) untarnished rep by showing that I’m occasionally not a perfect mom, wife, employee, daughter, sister or friend! I’m not even always 100% sunny and cheerful! OTOH, boy does that sound fun! An unscientific random poll on Twitter and Facebook returned almost all ‘go for it!’s with two ‘we’ll make fun of you forever’ responses. I can live with that.

Anyone else applying?

Experiencing fandom “In a Different Light”

Everclear on marquee at State Theatre
The last Everclear photo I took last night

Well, now that I’ve written it all out, it sounds kinda petty. Just dance, enjoy the show, and don’t expect anything like courteous staff I guess. Like going to baseball games – buy the fan gear, sit in your seats, clap and cheer, but don’t expect concessions to work smoothly, any effort on the part of the players, a win, or any appreciation of your efforts supporting the team for years? Nah, doesn’t work. I think my disappointment is valid.

Lesson learned: Don’t go to an event with any expectations. I guess I have this personal problem – I feel part of an event if I can photograph it and I hold memories in photos. I’ve been a fan of Everclear for too many years to admit and have seen them whenever they’ve played locally, and by locally I mean Fairfax County and west of Baltimore. I’ve photographed them every time — at least when I remembered to bring my camera! I’ve found band founder and lead singer Art Alexakis to always be fan-friendly and engaging. I jumped for joy when I saw they’d be playing very locally at the State Theatre in Falls Church! I was also really looking forward to photographing them again now that my skills have improved over the years, as well as my equipment. But I was denied and disappointment unrelated to my confiscated camera only escalated from there.

I swear I read Art looked forward to seeing the photos fans took. So when I was told the strict “absolutely no photography” policy was set by the band, I was surprised and left wondering what the explanation behind it was. Okay, no problem, I still got to see the band I’ve been following for years and hopefully would get my camera back by the end to get a photo with the band, another custom. But we didn’t bother trying after the concert. And I was informed by security at one point to stop taking photos with my iPhone.

That “fan connection” felt like it was severed last night in a heartbreakingly painful way. It was such an awful experience, I don’t think I’ll be going back to the State Theatre. The acoustics in the building were awful (a fact we’ve noticed before). Our food orders (required for reserving a table) trickled out missing things we ordered and ingredients. Another concert-goer took exception to me standing and dancing. The staff, with the exception of our waitress and a guy outside I vented at, were rude and downright obnoxious. One employee even offered to take Mr. Chatter out back to settle something Mr. C disputed. Seriously? Is this junior high?

The sad thing is the place is an icon of history in our small town and only blocks from our house — a place we should be proud to visit and enjoy, sharing some historic kinship. My expectations were so high for this concert based on past experiences with Everclear and the thrill that they were playing walking distance from my house, that I was left feeling punched in the gut after the whole thing. We didn’t bother waiting in line for a photo and autographs. I didn’t want to risk any more disappointment.

But maybe I should have just taken it all in stride, smiled, danced, and enjoyed the show, just appreciating the fact I was present for the musical stylings that included only one new song. The lyrics suggest not taking crap from anyone, yet I felt like a steaming handful was thrown in my face by the night’s end. And I paid for that luxury. I even bought a t-shirt.

Stephen Strasburg’s Professional Debut

6/9/10: Since Google is sending links here after his MLB debut, here are photos from that!

I’ve got a little Strasburg in my pocket going jing-a-ling-a-ling… Okay, so it’s a USB keyfob with the ESPN video on it from yesterday’s debut, and somehow that put the old karaoke standby in my head. Anyway, for your voyeuristic workday pleasure in case you missed it yesterday, here are the “live look-in” clips from Sports Center. Sadly, they do not include the whole two innings like I thought they would. Yup, there’s “Strasburg returning to the dugout.” Exciting!

Amy Shipley from the Washington Post was there and wrote a descriptive story. There’s also an article and short video with Noah Coslov (same footage, looks like). Nationals Farm Authority posted a link to another video, although it won’t play on my Mac for some reason.

Bang Zoom Go The Fireworks

The 2009 Nats season ended on a high note with a 7 game winning streak complete with sweeps of the Mets and Braves to counterbalance the 7 game losing streak they started the season with. I was kind of sad to see the season end, so thrilled with the 15 innings the last game turned out. On the other hand, I was also kind of relieved to see the season end. As the Nats lost their spark throughout the season, so did I.

As I’ve said, my depleted output is not entirely the Nats’ fault. My job has become extremely demanding and as my kids get older, I have less free time between the two. I don’t read every article and ingest every blog post anymore. So I feel like I’m letting my readers down.

So into the off-season we head. Who will be named permanent (as perm as one can be) manager? What trades and acquisitions will transpire? Where will Manny Acta land? Will Livo be brought back again? Still staying tuned… Meanwhile, I think I’ll start firing up that video camera again. Another thing I left idle most of this season…

How I want to remember the 2009 season…

Maxwell mobbed at home plate after grand slam

[ Photoset ] The final home game of 2009 had the usual round of errors, heartbreak and breath holding. I was stressed from picking up my freaked out cat from knee ligament surgery and almost didn’t go, curly W blanket or not. But Little Chatter and I went and were rewarded for it. Despite arriving during the 4th inning, we still got blankets. We left feeling much less stressed, warmer and even happy!

The Mets looked like they were going to win this one and avoid a sweep. The Nats were down 4-2 heading into the bottom of the 9th. Gonzalez and Mike Morse singled and were moved up by a sac bunt from Willie Harris. Elijah Dukes drew a walk to load the bases and Zimmerman coming up. I thought how perfect it would be to end the home season with a walk-off from Zimmerman, but sadly he struck out, ruining that chance. Adam Dunn was next in line with two outs and the bases loaded. Ok, he could get homerun #39 right here at home, right? Nope, he walked, which did bring in a run to narrow the gap to one run with two outs and the bases still loaded. Justin Maxwell entered the batters box and the at bat seemed to go on forever with hope and despair hanging in the balance. He worked the count to full. One pitch and it could be over either way. Another foul… and then BAM!

The sparse crowd went nuts! In fact, they were already going nuts with loud chants of “Let’s Go Nats!!” and rhythmic clapping with every pitch. A fan who snuck down closer to the field waved a blue broom in the air in anticipation of the sweep of the Mets. The atmosphere felt electric and maybe that helped. I’ve heard players perform better in front of a supportive crowd.

Now I have to go ice the cat’s knee, so without further ado, the photos from the last home game at Nats Park – a walk off winner by Justin Maxwell, who went out in style with a grand slam! Continue reading How I want to remember the 2009 season…