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Sunday, February 18, 2007

Crap Sandwich

I have varying theories about how Shaughnessy puts together his column. One theory has him sitting in front of his keyboard—one hand mindlessly typing and spewing out clichéd thoughts while the other hand is dipped in a bag of Cheetos as he intently watches Rosie on The View. Another perspective has Shank backed in a corner by mobsters cowering for his life. He somehow manages to lay his hands on a machine gun and he furiously fires hoping that he will hit his mark and yet he always seems to miss. A final theory is that “Big Daddy Globe” retired Shank five years ago in a purge and they replaced with him a computer program that uses a random generator to produce columns. They have pre-programmed certain thoughts (“Manny quit”) and catch-phrases (“Theo and his minions”) which appear and re-appear. (Note: I think they better fire that computer programmer).

I like the computer program theory for today’s effort—the random generator was in overdrive. The main theme for today is that Manny quit last year and Shank breathlessly awaits for Manny’s appearance at spring training. More on this in a minute but I would like to quickly recap the worn out Shank-isms that Dan trots out today….

We have the tired refrain that Florida sucks (Fort Myers is a “godforsaken town”); there is a reference to “Elvis Matsuzaka”; Shank calls Schilling the “Big Blowhard”; we get a "Theo and his minions" reference; I always love mentions of “fanboy bloggers” and we are treated to one of those today. Another tired technique is Shank’s attempt to paint Ramirez as the clueless wonder….Shaughnessy writes…”Can’t wait for that Manny Moment when he sees Daisuke Matsuzaka for the first time and asks teammates. “Hey, who is that Japanese guy and why is he wearing Johnny Damon’s number?”

One of Shaughnessy’s other classic techniques is where he subtly lays claim as the voice of “Red Sox Nation” by using “We”. He says “We have rejoiced in the retirement of Keith Foulke”; “We won’t sleep until the Sox make a decision on [Schilling’s contract]; and “We don’t care if he talks.” He also loves to tell his readership what they should believe. He says, “…please don’t be a stooge and attempt to perpetuate the farcical theory that Manny was too wounded to play last summer.” (By the way, who rejoiced in the retirement of Keith Foulke anyway? Shaughnessy hated him because he wasn’t passionate enough about baseball. Yet Shank hates us because we are too passionate about sports.)

As for the main theme, for the umpteenth time, Shank claims that Manny quit on the team last year during the infamous Yankees series. To be honest, I don’t really know if Manny quit. But Shaughnessy offers no tangible proof. He simply asks that we take it on faith that he is right. I don’t think many (if any) Red Sox players talk to him so I have a hard time believing that Shank's voice somehow represents what Manny’s teammates truly believe behind the scenes.


15 comments:

Paul said...

The Keith Foulke line in today’s Shank opus really ticked me off. Sure, he was banged up and grumpy his last two years on the team but the bottom line is that the Sox don't win in '04 without him. Period.

I didn't "rejoice" when he retired. I'll save my schadenfreude for truly loathsome characters like Giambi and Bonds. I also might rejoice to a lesser extent if say Clement decides to hang it up.

I have some advice for El Shanko...Why don't you interview some real members of "Red Sox Nation" before you say how they feel? There's no shortage of them around here. I'll start you off. Get a Boston phone book and start with Alan Aaron. Let me know when you hit Zeke Zyski. I bet 95% of those polled did not rejoice when they heard Foulke retired.

Anonymous said...

Wow, players haven't even arrived yet and the Bigot of Groton is already tearing into minorities! CHB is in midseason form!

Let's cut a little slack to the poor CHB over the Foulke thing. Put yourself in his shoes. Imagine you had a book that was your only contribution to the literary world, and you rode off the success of that book for 20 years and expected to coast for the rest of your life. Along comes Keith Foulke, who had the nerve to give everything he had left in his body in Oct. 2004, saved the Red Sox when they were going down for the count against the Yankees, and helped the Sox turn things around. The Red Sox would not have won without Keith Foulke and Shaughnessy wouldn't have had the sales of his book drop off a cliff. You'd be bitter at Foulke too!!

Anonymous said...

The chb who writes for the Boston Globe is a dispicable person who just hates everyone who does not agree wholeheartedly with whatever he says. The Globe should drop him ASAP. To use his name (which I never do) in the same sentence with Jackie Mac or Bob Ryan of the Globe is a disgrace and an insult to those other two columnists. And as for the great Peter Gammons, the chb could write till doomsday and never be 1/16th the writer Mr. Gammons is.

The chb reminds me of the writers for Hearst and Pulitzer who during the Spanish war in Cuba, wrote stories about the atrocities in Cuba from their hotel rooms in NYC. Yellow Journalism is alive and well in the laptop of the chb.

thecandidate said...

CHB wrote that " [t]here's been no word from Camp Manny since he curiously quit in the middle of the crucial Yankees series at Fenway in late August."

Manny played all five games in that series and his stats were as follows.

11AB, 8 hits, 2 2b, 2 HR, 7RBI, 9BB, .850OBP

Quit?

Chris said...

The Boston Globe is a 'Godforsaken newspaper' and Shaughnessy is a 'Godforsaken columnist.' He is utterly aloof, full-of-himself, and so far in the rearview mirror that he can't even fathom how much. He is a sorry individual working for a sorry--but soon-to-be-extinct--newspaper.

Anonymous said...

Whew. Don't know what's worse: the breathless racism of this column or the clearly clueless attiitude of its author. CHB all but uses the "N-word" when referring to Ramirez. As in, "When's that shifty fella gonna shape up and play hard? How come he's so dumb?" Yuk.
And I agree with the previous post: "Sox nation" didn't rejoice when Foulke retired. Felt sad about what might have been, maybe. But, of course, without Foulke, "The Curse of the Bambino" stays on the best-seller list.

Anonymous said...

I am a college student in Boston and one of my projects for my journalism project is to track a local writer, read all of their stuff, and then interview them. My person is Dan Shaughnessy and he was nice enough to agree to let me interview him for my little project so I have continued to follow his stuff. And after reading his stuff, interviewing him, and then reading your blog, you need to get a life. This is rediculous, I don't know what you're trying to gain by ripping his columns apart. Nothings going to change. He's a columnist, he's going to write what he wants to write and I just can't fathom how you have enough time to keep this blog going. It's sort of pathetic. Why don't you write about something productive instead of bitching and moaning like a bunch of moody teenagers. If you don't like him then don't read him but I think sometimes you people go to far and attack him in ways that he shouldn't be attacked. He's just trying to make a living and writing about what he wants to write about in the ways he wants to write so I don't see what the problem is. There are much more controversial writers out there than Dan.

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure that by rejoice in Foulke's retirement, he means in the fact that a great career has ended, not in a spiteful, mean spirited way

Anonymous said...

Anonymous college student: did you flunk your assignment? There are plenty of classy columnists out there (Ryan and MacMullen come to mind) and I doubt you will find bloggers flogging their work. Shaughnessy is a poor excuse for a columnist and that is not an isolated opinion. It must be nice to get paid big money to spew vitriol and lies.

The Chief said...

"Why don't you write about something productive instead of bitching and moaning like a bunch of moody teenagers."

That's good advice. Maybe someday The CHB will use it.

Paul said...

"I'm pretty sure that by rejoice in Foulke's retirement, he means in the fact that a great career has ended, not in a spiteful, mean spirited way."

You mustn't read Shank very often. Everything he says is thick with bitter sarcasm. I refer you to his "Yahoo" Patriots column after they beat the Jets in the post-season. I think his "rejoice" comment was Shank gloating, in a way. Foulke is out of a job but he still gets to write for "Daddy Globe".

I think most Red Sox fans would have liked him to continue pitching. I would have given him a standing ovation if I were to go to go to one of the Indians games this year. I don't rejoice when any player has his career cut short by injury (unless it's steroid guys like Giambi, Bonds and Sheffield).

Shank hates most players on the Sox. He hates Manny because he ignores him. He hates Schilling because he's just as opinionated as he is and tells new players not to talk to him. Plus, his parent company owns 17% of the Sox. I'll be counting how many times he shoulders this cross this season.

Eklof 22 said...

Interesting that the 'anon college student' didn't leave any contact details or what not..

anyway, regarding;

''He's just trying to make a living and writing about what he wants to write about in the ways he wants to write so I don't see what the problem is.''

The problem is he comes out with some truly shocking material. In his latest piece he would seem to be suggesting we should all be happy now that a player who is too physically injured to keep playing is retiring. That's how it seems to me anyway.

As a member of the Irish National Baseball Team the last ten years I think I speak for every sports man or woman when I say anyone who rejoices in an athletes injuries is really working on a level below ignorant.

As for the rest of that little collegiate rant, well, most of us are just writing, in a way we like, about something we love. So, touché, pal

dbvader said...

anonymous college student:

You are further proof that a journalism degree is waste of four years. If you are what I can expect on the sports pages in a few years, the daily newspaper will indeed be dead.

Curly Headed Sports Hack said...

Why is Dan Shaughnessy nicknamed "Shank"? Is that a golf analogy applied to his writing?

Paul said...

"Why is Dan Shaughnessy nicknamed "Shank"? Is that a golf analogy applied to his writing?"

I'm not 100% on this but a "shank" is a homemade knife usually used in prisons. A shank could be used to backstab somebody...I think that's where that nickname comes from. I could be wrong. I mean, I just found out what CHB stands for. Although, I don't know what the "Boyfriend" part of that comes from.