Thursday, June 14, 2007
Welcome to Detroit Flock City
By Eric Adelson ESPN The Magazine
The talk of Detroit is not Justin Verlander's no-hitter Tuesday, or the Pistons' disappointment, or Shaun Rogers' legal troubles, but the dozens of seagulls that descended on Comerica Park over the weekend. Page 2 sat down with an anonymous seagull for what proved to be a contentious interview.
"Dave Winfield? If I never hear that name again it'll be too soon."
P2: What are you trying to pull here?
SG: Trying to watch the game. Duh. Don't be a humanbrain.
SG: I'll be here all week.
P2: That's the problem. Don't you realize what you're doing is illegal?
SG: That's what the border agent said. Look, we tried to get in through the turnstiles but we were shooed away. And we don't do pat-downs. We're fans like everyone else. We just arrive early because we don't have to deal with traffic.
P2: But you're disrupting play.
SG: Says who? Not Justin Verlander. He don't say nothin' to us, and we don't say nothin' to him.
P2: So you're Tigers fans? I thought cats and birds don't get along.
SG: Not Tigers fans per se. It's just that the Wings were eliminated. And we like Tim Byrdak. Also that huge tiger statue in the concourse, well, it was really nice of you to build that for us.
P2: Did you read the Free Press on Wednesday?
SG: I wouldn't go with "read." Let's say I "used" it.
P2: The paper reported how the Tigers' grounds crew unleashed dogs to chase you away. What does that tell you?
SG: It tells us Dave Dombrowski doesn't know how to deal with unions. Pretty pathetic, considering the city we live in. Hey, we spend all day at the auto plant and we just want to catch the game at the end of a day. We don't get drunk. We don't interfere. We just come and go.
P2: Tell that to Tony Graffanino. He stared one of you down after striking out on Tuesday.
SG: I saw that. Tell Tony to start using an umbrella even on sunny days. Also tell him we would have done the last episode of "The Sopranos" differently. Much differently.
P2: Big talker. Hope you remember the time Dave Winfield killed one of your brethren with a thrown ball in Toronto.
SG: I'm not here to talk about the past.
P2: Well, people are not happy, and our job is to find out how this standoff will end.
SG: Talk to our agent, Scott Boras.
SG: Seriously, call him. Work something out where ESPN could install cameras on our heads. This could work. Call it Bird's Eye.
P2: How did Boras get in touch with you?
SG: That's not important. Listen, it's not our fault you people put a large green field next to a body of water and stocked it with free food. You're blaming the victims. [Sigh.] We should have been Cardinals fans. That just makes more sense.
P2: Yeah, yeah. So when are you leaving?
SG: When you people think of something more effective than what you're using. Dogs? A fake owl? My favorite is the flare behind home plate. Oooh! Scary! Some of us have seen games at Shea. Nothin' like a wobbly 747 in a fog alert to send us to the Bronx. And you bring a flare? Please. Here's a hint: We never showed when Zumaya was around. That dude is terrifying.
P2: Can't you simply go someplace else?
SG: Where? Cleveland? Just so someone's watching the NBA Finals? Snap!
P2: Lemme guess: Pistons fan.
SG: Oh sure. I love it when the crowd at the Palace yells, "SEEEEED!"
P2: I don't think that's what they're saying. Anything else you'd like to add?
SG: Fire Millen!
Sound off to Page 2 here.