Anastasia Monponsett
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April 5 - Good Monday

Baseball's opening day and the NCAA basketball final falling on the same day
deserves a holiday more than Flag Day. The only reason they don't have one is
that people would be drinking from noon to midnight and banging in sick on
Tuesday, although I'm sure the economy is taking a low-production hit this
morning. If John Kerry had promised Americans this day off in one of his debates with Chicken
George, it'd be his Iraq War to prosecute today.

The Red Sox opened up the season in a pleasant afternoon game that saw them curb-stomp the
Texas Rangers to the tune of 7-3. David Ortiz bashed in 3 runs, and Curt Schilling looked healthy
enough to roll over the Texicans.

Roger Clemens was at the game, although he was in pure spectator mode. Theo Epstein met with
him briefly, to show him the blank check we'd be handing him if he closed out his career in the Bean.
It wasn't anything detailed, but it's wise General Management to check in with the guy with the 1.87
ERA that the Yankees are also courting.

Clemens in Boston would be insane. I'd have to overcome my fear of being hit the face with a
baseball (I once turned down Sox tickets because they were on the first base side during an era
when Shea Hillenbrand was manning third base), and go to a game. While I haven't seen enough
Coco Crisp or Wil Mo Pena to guarantee a pennant, Clemens would give us a pretty fat rotation.

I've been laid up for quite some time, and there are those who would say that I'm a bit of a crank about
it. Tammy- who may have been in collusion with my sister, who had nothing better to do on a lovely
April day than babysit my children- took me out to the Way Ho for chinese food while we watched the
baseball game.

She had about 4 Mai Tais, and she's rather slight for such hardcore afternoon drinking. She watches
a lot of sports with me... although Tammy and Shea watch sports like men watch The O.C.- not really
playing attention to the plot, as that would distract from them from analyzing the players. Tammy
"rates' each and every player the camera focuses on, often speculating aloud on the sexual prowess
of David Ortiz or Trot Nixon ("Stacey...duhhhhhh....You name a horse 'Trot,' .... he's gotta be hung like
one!"). This is bad enough around four year old Gabrielle, but try doing it in a bar.

The girl who can't move her head (smiles) to either side drove us home, in a trip that involved a rotary.
Tunnel vison beats Mai Tais for the car keys, especially where I had consumed nothing worse than
some General Tsao's chicken and a couple of miks.  After a quick visit to Philly, I had to
play/cook/welcome home/put to bed... and then it was time for the NCAA game.

I'm not that into college basketball, but the NBA freak in me likes to catch some of the games
featuring the better players. These dudes might end up being Celtics, especially where the Celtics
suck badly enough right now as to merit a higher draft pick.  There is some talent in the NCAA this
year, and I'd be remiss in my duties as a sports blogger if I didn't know who was who.

Last night's entertainment was a Florida dogpiling of an overmatched UCLA
squad. It ended up as 73-57, and it was over by the first half. A twenty point lead is
insurmountable when one team isn't getting 60 in a game... especially when
going inside is off the table as a scoring option. Big ups to Florida coach Billy
Donovan, a former Providence kid.

Florida dominated inside, as they have this Joakim Noah freak who was serving up facials like
Elizabeth Grady. In fact, he may have very well played himself into the top of the NBA draft. While rather
slender, he flies around the court, you can't shoot anywhere near him, and he showed fine
fundamentals (passing, picks, footwork, defensive presence) last night. As far as big games go... this
dude was running that game like a dangerous pimp. He looks to be a superb pro, albeit as more of  a
defensive presence.

The draft-geek sites I go to have LSU skyrocket Tyrus Thomas at the top spot, and Rudy Gay looked
fairly solid when I saw him playing. The Celtics could do a lot worse than drating Marcus Williams.
Noah just moved himself up to the early first round if he decides to come out, over a series of games
that just made him millions of dollars.

That's a full sports freak day. The US government should give the people what they want by hooking
us up with Opening Madness Day as a full-fledged religious holiday. I'm a pretty big fan of altering a
few schedules- including the ones that the NCAA, MLB, IRS, college spring break, Christianity,
Daylight Savings Time and history itself work on- to give us St. Patrick's Day off  on a Friday during
what will become a Saturnalia of Sport.

In lieu of the drinking that will occur, I'd give workers and schools an early release Thursday for the
eventual Friday holiday. I'm thinking late March/early April, but I'm flexible.
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