April 2012

And Away We Go...
From the Inbox of Ray Duffy...

Busmeister's email hacked.

Link to Newscorp scandal uncertain.
Since the untimely death of Henry Berry in 1996, BLOHARDS' EVP - Transportation Ray Duffy has organized the group's annual trip to the home opener at Fenway.

So gracefully implemented is each year's journey that its attendees seldom have cause to consider the effort it occasions. That effort is considerable, as documented in a cache of recently secured emails from Duffy's personal account.

You can read excerpts of Duffy's emails here. Having done so, any reader unable to forgive the occasional episode of grouchiness on Ray's part will be deemed in need of an empathy implant.

'12 Schedule Least Propitious Ever?

First lunch of the 2012 season to be held in 2013?
Burdened by both a complete lack of imagination and an unfavorable schedule (the Sox come to town for two summer weekends -July 27 and August 17- and the final series of the season), sources report that the BLOHARD Luncheon Committee is in a "state of total paralysis".

Given the difficulty of filling so much as a restaurant booth on any of these dates, the organization's "braintrust" is reportedly pondering such alternatives as: (i) applying to New York City for designation as a not-for-profit "seniors hot lunch" program (which actually hews pretty closely to the current mission); (ii) dispatching a team of "skip tracers" to Boston to "invite" fan favorite Alfredo Aceves to an impromptu mid-week, mid-May lunch; (iii) attempting a marriage of convenience with the fan club of Major League Lacrosse's Long Island Lizards; or (iv) insinuating, without actually saying so, that the program at this year's lunches will contain original and humorous material. None of these options is seen as even remotely viable.

In all seriousness, the schedule is something of a poser, and we'd welcome the membership's input. Tuesday October 2 looks like a go, but if you've got a preference between July 27, August 17, or a Juneish cocktail thing, or have any other thoughts, drop us a line, willya?

Interwebs? Sure, we got a million of 'em.

Follow us at blohards.com; BLOHARDS on Facebook; and @BLOHARDS8 on twitter.
From the Mind of Bobby Valentine...

BLOHARDS, eh? Can't say as I've ever heard of 'em. Speaking of hard, lots of people think ballroom dancing is hard. Not me though... Remember a time in Japan when I went to this temple in the middle of nowhere and there was a monk who hadn't been outside the compound in 60 years. He didn't know what a computer was, but he knew about Bobby V, which is pretty much the same thing... Amazing how many people don't know that I invented the hub-and-spoke airline route structure... Dustin Pedroia can play a little ball, but he sure is brash. Not sure how I feel about that... "Bobby" was the third most popular boys' name in Japan the year after I won the Japan Series. It was also the eighth most popular girls' name. Not sure how I feel about that either... I shoulda patented that damn spork... Sometimes after dealing with that prima donna Beckett I think should say the heck with baseball and just accept the Chairmanship of the World Banků Al Gore invented the internet? Don't make me laugh... Sleep is for chumps. So is having a reliever with an unfavorable platoon split pitching in a 1.5+ leverage situation...

BLOHARDS, Valentine Get a Little Ink

Former seen more publicity-deprived than latter.

Stamford Advocate reporter Elizabeth Kim wrote a recent piece on Stamforites' conflicting affinities for Bobby Valentine and the Yankees. The article that ran in the paper had a bunch of nice stuff on the BLOHARDS. Interestingly, in the subsequent on-line version every single mention of the BLOHARDS was, so to speak, airbrushed out. More on this conspiracy as it develops.

Steinberg Returns!

"Now is the winter of our discontent made glorious summer by the dentist from Baltimore..."

Dr. Charles Steinberg, second only in the Blohard pantheon to Our Hero, Dick Bresciani, has, after an ill-advised fling with a floozy from Southern California, returned to where he should have been all along; Boston and the nurturing bosom of the BLOHARDS. Your can read all the happy tidings here. With any luck, he'll join us for what's shaping up as a very intimate lunch this summer.

(modified) Yankees logo
From the Inbox of Ray Duffy (No, Really!)

Having failed to get in touch with long-time opening day bus rider Jeff Weeks prior to the 2011 opener, Ray Duffy was saddened to learn this year that Jeff, a 28-year prosecutor in the Suffolk County D.A.'s office had passed away not long after the 2010 OD trip, at the age of 55.

In an attempt to locate Jeff's family, Ray reached out to Jeff's former colleague Jake Kubetz. Jeff having previously lobbied to get Jake on the bus, Ray knew Jake to be a Mainer, a Sox fan, a former soldier and an eager would-be bus trip participant. In an email Ray solicited contact information for the Weeks family and invited Jake to join this year's trip.

Jake's response, which told a story of multi-generational service to the country, Johnny Pesky, and ultimate redemption over the forces of darkness, read, in part, as follows:

"As you know, Jeff was a great guy, and a huge Red Sox fan. He was one of three Red Sox fans in our office, and we talked constantly about the team. Jeff did get me on the 2007 opening day trip, and we had a great time. As the Red Sox were a big part of Jeff's life, your extending an invitation to his family is really meaningful.

I would love to join you for Opening Day, and although I know that tickets are tough to come by, it would be great if my wife could join me as our family has a special connection to the Red Sox. I'll share two quick stories.

My family, although my father's family is from Mount Kisco NY, became diehard red sox fans after World War II. My father's uncle, my godfather, Lawrence Abel, fought in the same unit with Johnny Pesky. After the war, they stayed in touch and when my father was young, Pesky took my father on a road trip. I still have the glove that Pesky gave to my father. My godmother lives in Florida and still speaks to Mr. Pesky

In 2003, I joined the Army, in part to continue to tradition of military service that my godfather began. After joining the army I was told that we were deploying to Iraq in late 2004. My father was able to get tickets to game 3 of the 2004 ALCS, the week before I was scheduled to deploy to Iraq. The night of that game was awful, the score, the weather, and knowing that I was deploying the following week was so depressing. However their comeback and World Series win, gave me a huge boost as I deployed, and at least in my mind, continued the connection between the red sox, the army and my family."

Jake and his wife will be on Bus #2 to Fenway this coming Friday, as, we hope, will members of the Weeks family in future years.

The Pizz Watch

Lifetime BLOHARD John Pizzarelli was recently seen on the Grammy Awards, playing rhythm guitar behind Paul McCartney, as he did on McCartney's new CD, KISSES ON THE BOTTOM. Pizz will be playing Scullers in Boston on May 17-18, then has a run at the Cafe Carlyle on 76th St. and Madison from May 29 through June 8th. Mention you're a dues-paying BLOHARD, produce a regulation membership card, and shame him into giving you his new CD, DOUBLE EXPOSURE (Telarc) that comes out on May 15.

Pizz also has a book due out in the Fall, WORLD ON A STRING (Wiley), on which he collaborates with Joe Cosgriff, BLOHARDS Ass't VP of Latin American Scouting (ex-Venezuela). Joe confides, "As you'd expect, it names names and is likely to blow the lid off the upholstery business", whatever that means.