Tuesday, January 13

Jose to City: Drop Dead

It’s time for Jose Melendez’s KEYS TO THE HOT STOVE.

1. Jose has always thought that being a headline writer must be a wonderful job. Hell, it may even be the best $30,000 a year job in the world.

You get to take someone else’s work, something he struggled, sweat and perhaps even bled over if they are John Stossel covering pro wrestling, slap a label on it, which may or may not have anything to do with the piece, and then have many more people look at your work than the actual authors. Even better, you occasionally get to be incredibly clever and write a headline like the Boston Herald’s “Dr. Doom and Va-va-va-vroom” to describe the 1990 Massachusetts Democratic ticket of John Silber and Marjorie Claprood.

Perhaps the most famous American headline is the one penned by the New York Daily News’ William J. Brink on October 30, 1975 “Ford to City: Drop Dead.”

Jose would like to pay tribute to this brilliant, and technically untrue headline (note: Ford never said it, though he did say “things are more like they are now than they’ve ever been”), by writing the following headline some time this year.


As you may have noticed, The Yankees laid out $400 million to just three players in the last few weeks.

In unrelated news, the Bronx Borrowers also recently requested “$259 million in tax-exempt bonds and $111 million in taxable bonds, on top of $940 million in tax-exempt bonds and $25 million in taxable bonds already granted for its $1.3 billion stadium” according to ESPN.com.

Wait a second. That seems incredibly related. The Yankees spend about $400 million on Teixeira, Burnett and Sabathia and suddenly they want $370 million in tax-exempt bonds. Huh. Funny that.

When New York City, where from what Jose understands many wealthy people live, is entering a financial crisis so grave the Mayor Judas Bloomberg, a former Red Sox fan, must, for the good of the people, overturn term limits, does it really make sense to give the Yankees another $370 million on top of the $900 million they already got?

Jose can understand why smaller cities, say Pittsburgh, might feel obliged to subsidize a team—that’s the only way they can have one. But New York? The Yankees were going to flee to Jersey? Sure…

So here’s the thing. At some point, it seems possible that New York City may once again need a bailout; after all, everyone else is getting one. So what will America say? Jose’s simple response echo’s Ford, DROP DEAD.

Get it from the Yankees. Get it from A-Rod or CC or AJ or anyone with initials and a contract worth north of $75 million.

It’s bad enough that the poor, and apparently, incredibly stupid, people of New York are subsidizing this scam, but keep Jose out of it.

Really, paying the Yankees to be in New York? It’s like paying Paris Hilton to be a whore. She’s going to do it anyway, why bother paying?

Cows, milk, free etc.

A message for our times?

2. Jose noticed that Mark McGwire got fewer votes for the Hall-of-Fame this year. Jose wonders if his stats final had anything to do with it. There was a question on the exam in which Jose had to calculate a Z score (note: which Jose knows has something to do with either Carlos or Victor Zambrano, but he forgets which) related to McGwire’s record setting 1998 season.

Of course, Jose couldn’t remember how to calculate a Z-score, so he just wrote down “Jose doesn’t want to focus on the past, he wants to do something positive for the future.”

It had mixed results. On the one hand, for some reason the teacher seemed to think that Jose could not calculate a Z-score and gave him a zero for the problem. On the other hand, Jose has not been indicted, unlike several classmates, who issued sworn affidavits that they could calculate Z-scores even though they couldn’t.

3. Before everyone gets al upset about the Yankees swiping Mark Teixeira from the Red Sox, can we take a minute to think about this linguistically? The first baseman’s name is pronounced Tesh-era.

Did anyone really want to have a Tesh Era in Boston? John Tesh is terrible. Not very good at all. Except for that old NBA music, that was pretty good. Seriously, Jose would rather sign a player named Yanniera. At lest Yanni has a Kevin Kennedy moustache.

I’m Jose Melendez’s, and those are my KEYS TO THE HOT STOVE.