How To Write A Newspaper Column

That Sounds Exactly Like A Delusional
Self-Important Gossipy Blog Entry

by T.J. Simers, LA Times

April 27, 2005

We’ve now gone full circle in the Dodger clubhouse, from grumps such as Kevin Brown and Gary Sheffield, to fun-loving good guys such as Shawn Green, Paul Lo Duca, Adrian Beltre and Steve Finley, back to a bunch of grouchy mopes.

Hey, I’ve tried talking to Mr. Chuckles on several occasions, but let me tell you, for pure enjoyment I’d rather spend a day — make it Super Bowl Sunday — shopping with the wife than trying to make small talk with Jeff Kent.

Until Tuesday I had never seen J.D. Drew in the clubhouse. The guy is obviously a loner who goes into hiding before every game — hiding, I presume, from Mr. Chuckles.

“I’m watching TV,” Drew insisted, and I know if I had Milton Bradley on my team, sooner or later I’d be looking for Dr. Phil’s advice too.

There’s no question Derek Lowe is a chatty guy as long as you don’t mind listening to him talk about the Red Sox and Yankees all the time. You can just imagine the frightened look on Jeff Weaver’s face every time Lowe brings up the Yankees, or for that matter, the satisfied look on the Boston Parking Lot Attendant’s face every time Lowe mentions the Red Sox. At least Lowe knows who signs his checks, but I’d like to see the look on Lowe’s face when he tries to cash them.

Just a little joke, of course, although you won’t find any of these mopes laughing, which brings me to the return of Green.

If you spent any time following the Dodgers recently, you know Green is one of the nicest athletes to ever play here. He never took himself too seriously, which already separates him from Mr. Chuckles, and although he went hot and terribly cold at times, his second-half play last year helped put the team in the playoffs.

A few seasons ago Green was struggling, so I sat him down to talk hitting — Green playfully going along with the gag, and responding a few days later with two homers against Milwaukee. Two days after that he had four home runs, a double and a single in the same game to set a major league record for total bases.

Last season I walked the Choking Dogs all the way to the finish line, Green & Co. jokingly going along with it. Had the guys signed on earlier, of course, they might have won a World Series — you know, like the Los Angeles Angels.

“I hate to break it to you,” Mr. Chuckles said the other day, “but you have no impact on what goes on around here.”

He’ll learn, of course, but in the meantime I thought I’d teach Mr. Chuckles a lesson.

I told Green before Tuesday night’s game that I had traded Jeromy Burnitz to the Bagger in our fantasy league to acquire Green.

I then asked Green to hit a home run for me against the Dodgers. I even took him out to the field and pointed to where I’d like to see the ball land — just draw an imaginary line from home plate over Kent’s head and into the seats.

Green came to bat in the second inning, and hit a home run over Kent’s head into the seats in right field. When he got back to the dugout, Green looked up to the press box, and while laughing, gave me a thumbs up.

I waved. I just hope it didn’t distract Mr. Chuckles.

(Funny thing, but Green’s team won by one run too.)

zulieka only gets cuter as she gets more pregnant + penguin mafia + alert me when glenn mentions delay