I flew to Tampa, Fla., last week to visit my buddy Stoner and research a magazine column about the growing phenomenon of Red Sox games on the road, where they're treated like the home team in many American League cities. As it turned out, USA Today and the Boston Globe ran features with similar angles last week, so I had to shift gears and write about Red Sox fans in general. But since this was my virgin visit to the Tropicana Dome, that led to the following conversation between me and one of my editors:
|FROM THE MAG|
Bill Simmons, a "true" member of Red Sox Nation, doesn't miss the Curse and welcomes all the bandwagon fans.
• From The Magazine
Editor: "Did you take any pictures?"
Me: "Yeah, of course."
Editor: "Why don't we post those pictures online and you could write snarky captions for them?"
Me: "Seriously? Is this a slow week or something?"
Editor: "Put it this way: If I have to edit one more Michael Vick column, I'm going to feed myself to a pit bull."
Me: "OK, OK, gimme a couple hours."
And a couple hours later? Here's what transpired:
|The Tropicana Dome is incredibly depressing in person like a cross between a nuclear reactor and an oversized silver boob, only if the boob was leaning to one side.|
|Free parking for a Major League Baseball game? Yep, it's true. Stoner and I argued about this for 10 minutes: he argued that it was a great gesture by the team to their fans; I argued that they could have charged $5 per car and it still would have been a great gesture. Eventually, we decided that a better gesture would have been free catheters, adult diapers and tapioca.|
|At some point, it becomes counterproductive for Tropicana to be associated with this stadium, right? I think spending three hours in Tropicana Field would convince me NOT to drink Tropicana products.|
|Did you ever think you'd get an education on solar power at the worst ballpark in baseball? Me neither. They should have used the money for electroshock therapy on Elijah Dukes.|
Bill Simmons is a columnist for Page 2 and ESPN The Magazine. His book "Now I Can Die In Peace" is available in paperback.