Tuesday, July 19

7/19/05 -- Balki vs. Fossum

It’s time for Jose Melendez’s KEYS TO THE GAME.

1. On his recent trip through the Balkans, Jose, never much of a linguist, only managed to pick up only a few words of Albanian. He learned that “po” means “yes” and that “yo” means “no.” (Note: Do Albanians think that Rocky ended with Balboa rejecting dumping his wife with the phrase “Yo, Adrian?” What about Yo MTV Raps? Did they think it was a show protesting the evils of rap music?) The only other words he learned were “Katastrophe,” “catastrophe” in English, which is quite useful in describing the Sox recent performance, and “boston” which means “watermelon.”

Boston does not mean watermelon in all Albanian dialects, just in the Kosovo dialect. Apparently, it also means watermelon in Serbo-Croatian. The term is said to originate from Turkish. Jose found this discovery a bit ironic, as this year’s Boston baseball club has born an uncanny resemblance to the juicy red melon. Much like a watermelon, the Boston Red Sox look from the outside quite substantial, but when one really presses the contents, one discovers that much of the substance of the team, much of what looked so solid, disappears and all that remains is a pulpy red mess.

Jose assume that if Boston is a word for a fruit in Kosovo Albanian, our other rivals’ city names must also mean some sort of fruit. Jose hasn’t looked it up or anything, but he has a few guesses.
New York, Jose presumes, is Albanian for pomegranate, and like the pomegranate, the New York club is excessively expensive, decadent, mostly made from useless material (note: seeds, Jason Giambi, same thing) and when one looks inside, deeply divided.

Baltimore is Albanian for coconut. At first it doesn’t look like it’s going to be any good, but then you crack it open, sample it and discover that it’s a lot better than you expected. Then it gives you the trots, and you realize that maybe it wasn’t so good after all.

Toronto is Albanian for star fruit. Every time you see it, it looks intriguing and even though it was bad the last time you tried it, you think maybe this time it will be different, maybe this time it will be good. It is not, and neither are the Blue Jays.

Tampa Bay is Albanian for moldy, rotten, foul smelling oranges. They look bad, they smell bad and they only get worse with time.

Yes, Jose knows that comparing American League East teams to fruit is absurd, pointless and frustrating, but so is talking about the Red Sox, so fruit it is.

For the complete KEYS visit http://redsox.mostvaluablenetwork.com

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