Red It, Watched It, And Wept - Week of 6/17/12

Sobering, but not necessarily sober. (Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images)

Covering what other writers are too scared too preoccupied with actual news to cover.

Welcome back (even though you didn't go anywhere, we did!) to RIWIAW! It's not our fault we overextend ourselves at work (actually, we're sorta self-employed so, yeah, it is). Regardless, we decided to take the time out today to give you the lack of quality you've come to expect. Hooray using strikethroughs as a comical device!

Monday: So, When Is Thomas More College Night?

In the never-stopping carousel of college days the Reds PR department puts on to make everyone feel warm and fuzzy inside, the Reds announced this week that The Ohio State University would be recognized for their achievement of not having to vacate any wins during the 2011-2012 college football season. To celebrate these scarlet letter days OSU finds itself in, new football coach (and UC grad, and former St. Xavier defensive backs coach) Urban Meyer was chosen to throw out the first pitch. Evidently, prior to the game, Meyer met with Reds announcer Thom Brennaman. I wonder in the world what they talked about.

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Tuesday: (Not Necessarily) This Week in (People Who Aren't As Smart as) Red Reporter History!

While we may disagree on things here from time to time, I think we can all come to a consensus that Joey Votto and Johnny Cueto are the two biggest contributors to the Reds' success over the past three years. Frankly, they're among the best in baseball at their respective positions. Now, do you think it'd be a good idea to trade these two talents for a starting pitcher with an ERA approaching 5.00? Well, Paul Daugherty thought so! Sure, hindsight is 20-20 (unless you're one of the myopic "Fire Duty" crowd), but please remember this story whenever this cat tells you he knows what's best for the team. Chances are, you're just as knowledgeable. Hat tip to Slyde for the link-a-rooni.

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Wednesday: Comment of the Week!

It comes from thevole! Unfortunately, I can't screen grab the quote because it's too large, but here is the link and the content:

Rest in peace, RocketGirl42

It seems like only yesterday when I met you at the water park. The sun reflecting from the wave pool, glinting in your auburn hair. You were there with your friends, and you glanced over at me and my buddies, the hint of a smile brushing against your face. We were all too nervous to go over to say anything, but you took the initiative, and came over and introduced yourself. Smiling, giggling, you told us your name was Rocket. Rocket, you said. We all kind of laughed it off, but you said it with a straight face, so we just went with it. "Rocket". We walked over by the lazy river, past the thrill-slides, and both grabbed inner tubes and got in. It’s funny, we kept bouncing into each other, as if some force was drawing us together. We didn’t say much to each other on our loop around the lazy river, but the look in your eyes spoke volumes. We both knew, we were sharing something special. At one point, we started drifting apart, and you reached out your hand to me. I instinctively grabbed it, pulling your tube close to me. It was good to feel your hand in mine; to turn that metaphysical connection into something physical. To this day, I thank my lucky stars we were in the water, or else you would have felt the nervous sweat on my hands. The warmth of your hand in mine sent a warmth through my sunburned body on an already-hot day. I knew this was something special. The rest of the afternoon flew by in a blur, we talked, we went on slides, we laughed at the overweight women, stuffed into too-small bathing suits in awful colors, in their horrible swim-caps. I don’t remember what we talked about, but everything was perfect. Soon, as the sun was setting over the kiddie pool, I knew it was time to go. Your mom was picking you up, and you were suddenly in a rush to go meet her when you realized how late it had gotten. You lived two towns over — "When will I ever see you again?" I asked, praying the pleading desperation I felt didn’t make it into the timbre of my voice. "IM me," you said with a wink. "RocketGirl42." My heart jumped in my chest. I knew this was something special, and I wasn’t going to ever let it go.

When I got home and tried not to hop online immediately to see if you were there, if that desperation had at all belied my attempts to play it cool. I held off for 10 minutes…15 minutes…half-an-hour… I couldn’t take it anymore. I had to see.

As soon as I signed on, I got the oddest message, from a screen name that was…odd. "RocketGirl42ishot?" Is hot? Ish Ot? I didn’t understand. "RocketGirl42ishot, RocketGirl42ishot, RocketGirl42ishot" it said. Over, and over, and over again. Only later did I realize this was all the sick plan of Cy Schourek, who followed you home, killed you, and IM’d me to brag about it. "Rocket Girl42 I shot." That bastard could never stand it when something nice happened to me.

Fuck you, Cy. Fuck you for murdering Rocket Girl42.

(by the way "Girl42" was actually her last name. Weird, right?)

I didn't really have anything nice to wear to the funeral

I told my parents I was going over to a friend’s house, put on my sunday church clothes, and hopped on my bike. I knew it was going to be a long ride, but I had to be there. I had to say goodbye. To have you come into my life like a whirlwind and then so cruelly ripped away from me was almost too much to take. I had to be there, to tell you what you meant to me, even though you’d not hear me — in this world, at least.

I arrived later than I expected, but I made it. I took a seat at the back of the church, so I wouldn’t be seen. I couldn’t even think of how to explain who I was, or my connection to the whole thing. Your parents were sitting in the front, of course. Your mother was inconsolable, and the tears rolling down your father’s cheeks belied his steely countenance. Mr. and Mrs. Schourek were there, too, off to the side. They were in a state themselves — and in a way, it was a funeral for them as well. Word had come down earlier that day that Cy would be tried as an adult, and it seemed he’d be going away for a very long time. The press had initially reported the gun had come from Mr. Schourek’s cabinet, but as it turned out, Cy stole it from a high-school kid who had been showing it off in the neighborhood. The Schoureks tried to be subtle about their presence, but their presence clearly added an additional uneasiness in the air.

I was trying to catch my breath, and my brain drifted off during the minister’s droning on about a better world. There were so many flowers around your casket that I could smell them all the way in the back. Part of me wished it was an open casket, just to see you one last time, but i don’t think i could have stood it — I’d have ended up in worse shape than your mother. I imagined you on top of the flowers, instead of under them. Lying on top of a field of flowers, in every color imaginable, as far as the eye can see. Reds, pinks, blues, yellows, all matching with your glorious auburn hair and green eyes. Will you be there, waiting for me, when I finally make it? I hope so. I’ll be waiting for you, too.

The newspapers couldn’t figure out what made Cy do it. They wanted to blame video games, or the TV, or movies, or anything they could understand. I don’t think any of them had anything to do with it, though. Cy was just…a little different. He always wanted to pick, and needle, and get under your skin. But I never let him get to me, and it drove him nuts. I was the only one who stood up to him. He could never find my weak spot, no matter how hard he poked and prodded. We joked a lot about him being "certifiable," but little did we realize how close we were. I guess once he saw me around you, he saw how he could utterly destroy me. And he did.

But he can never take you away from me. Not fully. I’ll have the memories of our afternoon together, and your face permanently etched into every nice thought I’ll have for the rest of my life. You’ll never be far from me, Rocket. Because I’ll never let you go.

Never.

Ironic. Mom and Dad bought me a suit for the trial.

They wouldn’t let Cy plead guilty, but you knew no-one wanted to have anything to do with the proceedings. The sheer sickness and sadness of the situation left a knot in everyone’s stomach. It was one of the hardest things I had ever had to do, when they called me to testify. The details of the story had emerged by this point — how I was the point that connected the dots between Cy and you. They had me recount the whole afternoon, from the first moment I laid eyes upon you until the last. It was hell. I couldn’t just break it down into the facts, like they kept telling me to. How could I pay attention to facts, when all I could feel that day was the pounding in my ears, and a whole new world opening up before me? It seems most people only think love matters when you reach a certain age — that what I felt was some sort of hormonal reaction, and the magic between us somehow didn’t count. Well, fuck them. It was real. It is real.

The worst part was Cy staring at me the whole time. How dare I tell the story of us in front of him, of all people? The only think that kept me going was the hope that my testimony would help put him away for a long, long time. Let him rot in prison forever, so he might get a fraction of the torture he’s put me through. The whole time I was speaking, he just…stared at me. There was a glint in his eye, and I knew he wanted to give me that sneer he always had, just lurking underneath the surface. He couldn’t do it, though. Not in front of everybody. That would ruin whatever chance he had of any mercy whatsoever from the court. So I had to pour every ounce of my pain, and my love, and my dreams into facts. Just facts. To get him as far away from me as possible, for the rest of his rotten, miserable life.

Mom and Dad were there, obviously. They helped a lot, just being there. And your parents were there, too. I hope it brought them at least a little comfort, knowing that your last day had been what it was. I was scared they’d blame me — if it wasn’t for me, you’d still be around — but when we met at the courthouse, your mother gave me a big hug, and we silently shared a moment. As I glanced over at her, during one of the lawyer’s stupid, complicated questions, I saw a bit of you in her face, almost. I saw her smiling with her eyes, and I could, for the first time, imagine how you might have looked, if you’d have had a chance to grow up. I imagined you, sitting next to her, and nodding after I recounted every detail I could remember. Not agreeing, really. Just acknowledging the majesty in the mundane — the slippery walkways, the wooden railing by the reflecting pools, us dodging an errant bee near a garbage can. They wanted to know what happened? I told them everything. Everything I could possibly remember. It was both the hardest and the easiest thing I’ve ever done in my life.

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Thursday: Stealing John Fay’s Mail – Where We Answer the Questions John Fay Chooses Not To on Twitter

@johnfayman Any chance the Reds make a play for Manny?

Pacquiao? Did you even see the fight last Saturday?

@johnfayman With the recent injuries to outfielders, any chance we may make a trade? Maybe someone like Juan Pierre

Absolutely. Get on that.

@johnfayman did Harris do well in AAA?

Are the Kardashians chaste?

@johnfayman Word on #reds and Dempster?

Released 9 years ago this November.

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Friday: This is What Interleague Play Is All About!

You have to hand it to the folks in the MLB front office. When originally conceiving of the concept of Interleague Play, I'm sure they realized the most explosive story in the 2012 season would involve a feud that occurred between two Ohio teams over something that happened in Los Angeles four years ago. Essentially, that's what has happened. Evidently, Derek Lowe decided to relitigate something that happened four years ago when Mat Latos did what pitchers do to get batters off the plate. What Lowe didn't seem to know is that when you unscrew a lid, everything comes out! Including the fact Lowe was getting #drunj at the ballpark the day he was slated to start! In other news, Terry Francona has expressed interest joining the Indians coaching squad.

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Saturday: His Candidates Would Only Make It Past The Primary Though

We try not to get into politics much here at RIWIAW, unless, of course, it involves someone doing something very stupid (Editor’s note: so, all the time?). However, this story involves the godfather of everyone Ken Broo lumps together when he calls baseball fans "stat geeks." That’s right, Bill James is starting a Super PAC. What does this mean? Probably that he’s going to be just as loud and annoying as anyone else with a Super PAC. The only difference is that he’ll be exploiting market inefficiencies! Get ready for non-stop commercials concerning the Forest Hills Local District School Board Race! There’s no reason to believe he’ll stop just because the race is uncontested; it just means the candidates he supports will have a higher OBP.

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