Out boys got their asses handed to them by the surging Orioles tonight at the Stadium. Mark Reynolds, the reincarnation of Ron Kittle’s nutsack, hit a two-run home run against Hiroki Kuroda, made two beautiful plays in the field, and hit another dinger against Derek Lowe.
It was more than enough.
Yanks had a couple of chances to score and didn’t do chiggiddy boom bam with them (Nick Swisher struck out four times). A solo homer by Curtis Granderson in the ninth is all that kept them from being shut out. The Yanks are a flat team since they played the Rangers a few weeks back and are paying the price for their ineptitude. The O’s now trail the Yanks by two.
“There are roughly three New Yorks. There is, first, the New York of the man or woman who was born here, who takes the city for granted and accepts its size and its turbulence as natural and inevitable. Second, there is the New York of the commuter — the city that is devoured by locusts each day and spat out each night. Third, there is the New York of the person who was born somewhere else and came to New York in quest of something…Commuters give the city its tidal restlessness; natives give it solidity and continuity; but the settlers give it passion. ”
My friend Mike C is a dedicated record collector. In the summer of 1995 he took me to A-1, a record shop in the East Village. I flipped through the stacks for about ten minutes, got tired, and started a conversation with a blond-haired kid standing near the counter. He was open and friendly, a rarity in boutique record shops where attitude reigns supreme.
About an hour later, Mike had gone through all of the crates, including the ones on the floor, and he came up with a copy of BDP’s second record for $2. Right then I knew I’d never be a beat junkie. I didn’t have the stamina or the drive.
I didn’t return to the store for close to a year and when I did the friendly guy was sitting behind the counter. His name was Jared Boxx and we became friends. Not long after that he joined two British guys, Steve and Rob, when they opened their own store–specializing in vintage soul, breakbeats and old school hip hop records. It was called The Sound Library.
Later still, Steve and Jared split and opened their own shop on 12th between A and B: Big City Records.
I collected records intensely when I was in my twenties but by 2000 or 2001 was on to other interests. I still went to see Jared who always hipped me to new music. He burned rare records to cd for me, then made MP3s as technology shifted. One day I asked him about a specific record and he said, “No, that isn’t for you.”
I was offended. How was he sure that I wouldn’t like it? Because that was Jared’s gift. He made it his business to know his customers’ tastes. So it was common to walk in the shop and find that he’d stashed away a record. “I thought you might like this.” Jared did this for all of his regulars, from the guys who spent their most of their paycheck each week on vinyl to hip hop producers like Q-Tip, Finesse, Primo, and the Beatnuts.
Jared is a humble man, not one to seek the spotlight. But he believed that music should be shared not hoarded and kept private. And the the store became an extension of his personality. It was a meeting place, a place of community. I’m pleased that I turned him on to a few records too, like when I found a bootleg De La Soul track that Pete Rock produced…
…Or when I lucked into four copies of the Lootpack’s debut EP buried in the stacks at Beat Street.
But times change and while people still buy records they do most of their shopping on-line. So when the rent went up, Big City decided to close it’s doors in town (an adjunct store in New Jersey will remain open).
They say goodbye tomorrow and the store will be missed. But instead of lamenting the end of an era I’d like to acknowledge what a great run Jared and Steve have enjoyed. The fellas at Big City touched many lives and that will not soon be forgotten.
If you are around, fall through and take one last look. Oh, and keep diggin’.
Yankee ace CC Sabathia had two runs in one pocket and a ray of sunshine in the other. He didn’t have the world’s greatest defensive performance behind him, but the runs and the sunshine should have been enough against the lowly Blue Jays. It wasn’t nearly. The Jays beat the Yanks 8-5, took the series, and if you watched all the games without knowing the standings, you’d be shocked to learn that the Yankees were on top and the Jays were on the bottom.
I was at the game with my family and for two innings, we lived the ideal day at the ball park. Unobstructed views for the wee ones, shade, and the Yankees kicking ass. I noted it, but I should have savored it. My kids began melting down approximately five minutes before Sabathia did and it never really got any better. We ended up leaving the stadium in storm of tears, trailing by a run in the seventh.
By the time we got home, my kids had straightened things out, but the Yankees never did get it together. I didn’t properly appreciate the Yankees 2-1 win yesterday. In the face of this series chucking loss, the 2-1 win seems like an oasis of pleasure.
Losses on TV make me want to spill a thousand words. Losses in person just make me shrug my shoulders. It’s so obviously a game of action and execution when you watch it live. It’s not the scripted drama I tend to make it when I watch on TV.
Can’t say much for this series except the Blue Jays clearly outplayed the Yankees and deserved their two wins. The Yankees will be in first place for several more days at least. It could stretch for the rest of season. Despite the evidence on the field lately, I think it will.