Angry Ward Wednesday: Mike Schmidt the Pool Guy, Miami Marlins and Musings from South Florida

jupiter hammerheadsWEST PALM BEACH, FL – Summer in the city wasn’t quite hot enough for me and my anger issues so I made an executive decision and forced the family to take a nice long sweltering vacation in the Sunshine State. Ah yes, late-July in Florida, there’s nothing quite like it. There are only a handful of insane tourists (easily identified by their ghastly pallor), people on the beach look like they literally live on the beach, and Best Buy is all out of air-conditioned dog houses. That being said, life goes on and here’s what’s happening.

Everybody in the Pool! This expression never really meant too much to me. I mean, if there’s a pool around, who doesn’t want to be in it? Even the caddies in Caddyshack had their 15 minutes of chlorinated glory. But my daughter has taken this swimming thing to a whole new level. She’s basically waking up, wolfing down breakfast, suiting up, and in her grandparents’ kidney-shaped aqua attraction all before the sun, or anyone else for that matter, is up. And this is just the first session of the day. She’s like a Fresh-Air Fund kid on steroids. It’s taking its toll. Speaking of pools…

From Hot Corner to Pool Cleaner: Mike Schmidt
From Hot Corner to Pool Cleaner: Mike Schmidt

About Schmidt. I was coming back from a nice lunch at Bradley’s Saloon in downtown WPB today when I happened upon a curious sight. It seems a certain Hall-of-Fame third baseman, arguably the best third baseman ever, has gone the Morris Buttermaker route and is making post-career ends meet by cleaning pools. I snapped a quick photo of his vehicle but didn’t get a clear shot of Schmitty himself.

Marlins or Minors? Before I came down here my brother-in-law offered me a choice of two things we could do this coming Saturday night; one was driving an hour and 15 minutes or so to Miami to check out a Cincinnati Reds/Miami Marlins grudge match in that gay disco they call a new stadium and the other was driving 10 minutes or so to see the Marlins minor league affiliate, the Jupiter Hammerheads, take on the Tampa Yankees. It was a simple choice, really: Do I go out of my way to see a team play that even locals don’t go see play while paying major league prices or do I go check out a Single-A game for next-to-nothing that includes a three-hour beer tasting in the price of admission? I am taking a flyer with the latter and will report next week how it turned out.

Free Beer? Marlins/Reds? Hmmm.

Soon enough I’ll be on a collision course with Disney and still trying to figure out how to avoid that one. Going to start by watching some of those movies where a meteor is going to crush Earth and move on from there. Just my luck, the Orlando Predators of the vaunted Arena Football League, don’t have a home game that weekend. No surprise given the fact that if you punch “Orlando Predators” into the old search engine, you get something not at all related to football… unless your name is Sandusky.

Back next week with Round 2 from God’s Waiting Room. Come back tomorrow for Fake Sandy Alderson!

P.s… Here’s a former Fresh-Air Fund kid all grown-up:

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About Angry Ward 754 Articles
Angry Ward, who has admirers at the New York Times, is the quintessential angry sports fan but for one exception... he's flat-out funny. And the angrier he gets, the more amusing his work becomes. Psychiatrists say, "Angry Ward's 'anger' is a direct result of "Bronx/Mets syndrome: growing up in the Bronx as a Mets fan." As if that weren't enough, his Minnesota North Stars abandoned him for Dallas, forcing him to embrace The Wild the way Nancy Pelosi embraces Mitch McConnell at charity events. And while his Vikings only tease him with success, his Golden State Warriors actually win these days. A-Dubya is MTM's longest-tenured indentured servant, its Larry David and quite simply, "The Franchise." (Junoir Blaber disputes this). Vent, curse and giggle with him on Angry Ward Wednesdays.