By Rex O’Rourke

Like bathing in a bubbling cauldron, several issues have been slowly raising my temperature, and making me very cranky. Little paper cuts are festering, aches paining, and pains aching. I don’t know if I can get “Angry Ward Angry” but here goes anyway.

First of all, let’s stop all the whining about the weather at last week’s U.S. Open. Everyone who made the cut got 72 holes to prove themselves and 24 of the 60 golfers who played the weekend endured the worst of the weather on Thursday. It’s golf; sometimes it rains, so get over it. Lucas Glover won because he held it together when he had to and played error free golf down the stretch, period. In defense of the touring pros, they weren’t the ones complaining. It was the media moaning on their behalf. By and large, the golfers handled it very well.

Next up, how long does it take a grounds crew to put some dirt on the mound? Friday night, C.C. Sabathia could have gotten a shave and a new fade in the time it took for Groundskeeper Willie to make a house call. Was that the Mutts way of trying to ice him? Where’d they go to get some extra dirt, the World’s Fairgrounds? Additionally, when did maroon become a Mutts color? You play in Jackie Robinson Dodger Stadium at Citifield and the help wears maroon. It’s only a question of time before the plumbing goes and the toilets back-up.

We love to pat ourselves on the back in this country. We have The Oscars (old school and okay), The Emmys (TV version of the Oscars and still okay), The Golden Globes (combo platter with cheese), The Tonys (headed to a PBS affiliate near you), The ESPYs (a completely unwatchable superfluous waste of time) and several other ways to express our love for ourselves. Where we’ve officially lost our minds and where the rest of the world must just laugh at us has to be The TV Land Awards. We’re now giving ourselves awards for 35 year old re-runs. You’ve got to be kidding me!

I saw Lou Piniella’s little rant about Milton Bradley (and presumably Carlos Zambrano) and as Sweet Lou flameouts go, it was pretty mild. Now I love Lou, but what in the name of Albert Belle did he think he was getting, the baseball equivalent of a Lady Byng Trophy winner? It’s Milton Bradley skip; Boardwalk/Park Place talent, St. Charles Place effort, Baltic Avenue head. Do not pass go do not collect 2 million dollars. To quote Mike Singletary (who’s fast becoming a favorite), “Ya can’t win with ‘em”. By the way, The Schlubs gave him a three year deal… FUMBLE!!!

As for the passing of Michael Jackson, let’s be honest folks, he’s better off dead. It was only going to get worse. I did like the gold plated shin guards, though.

Everyone stop calling Plaxico Burress “Plexico”! It’s Plaxico; otherwise it’d be spelled Plexico… like Mexico.

I see my Islanders selected John Taveres with the top pick in the draft. Poor kid, it’s like going to the Clippers.

People who annoy me: Boomer Esiason, Jim Gray, Jonathan Papelbon, Joe Buck, Dane Cook, and anyone who doesn’t hustle.

Last night John Sterling… ah forget it!

Finally, during a conversation on Tuesday I learned that it cost $280 to volunteer at last week’s U.S. Open. Let me repeat that, $280 to VOLUNTEER at last week’s U.S. Open. The only thing worse than the short end fans are getting these days are the saps that would pay to work a golf tournament. I know they got a free golf shirt with Bethpage Black on it but come on, show some spine! Rise up against your oppressors. Has the world gone completely insane? The same rage can be directed towards anyone who’d pay for a Personal Seat License. You just paid Don Corleone for the privilege of extorting money from you. I wonder how that conversation goes at the breakfast table.

Well Jimmy, you’ve got a choice, you can go to college or eight Giants games a year, take your pick”.

If everyone refused to pay they’d have no choice but to eliminate them. This is where we need some good old fashioned, Martin Luther King Jr., Sixties style activism. But nothing will happen. We’re lambs to the slaughter on our way to the abbatoir telling the guy about to slit our throat, “Hey, nice shoes, where’d you get ’em”. I have to go now before I blow a gasket. I’m going to get my tool box out and start bashing myself in the head with a hammer.

Until next week,

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