Smackdown in Santa Barbara: How I Survived My Brush With Insane Dodgers Fans

Shoreline_Park3.jpg

The afternoon started so innocently, so tranquilly. It was a beautiful, unseasonably warm day in Santa Barbara – sunny skies and 80-degree temps. (Sorry to those in cold climates, but this is why I moved here.) 
I was taking my five-mile walk along Shoreline Park. The idea was to get a little exercise, a little fresh air, a little relief from working at the computer.
I was wearing my Yankees cap as usual – the one with the rhinestones.
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And I was listening to my iPod.
Lady.Gaga.jpg
“Poker Face” is not a memorable song, but it starts the adrenaline pumping.
I was proceeding at a nice clip, feeling pretty good about life, when I came upon them.
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O.K., so they weren’t carrying weapons. They looked scary just the same. And they blocked my path so I couldn’t simply power-walk past them.
“Hey, what’s with the Yankees hat,” said the biggest one. It was not a question.
“I’m a Yankee fan,” I said, restraining myself from adding, “You have a problem with that?” I’m not stupid. I was outnumbered, plus they were huge and I only weigh 100 pounds.
“Yankees suck,” said another guy.
“Yeah, they suck,” said the first one, getting in my face for emphasis.
At first, I figured they must be Red Sox fans, since we hear the chant from them all the time. But these guys didn’t bring up ’04 – the usual refrain – so I was confused.
“Fine,” I said, determined not to be intimidated. “Which team doesn’t suck?”
“Dodgers,” the leader said. “We’re Dodgers fans. Like you’re supposed to be.”
I squelched a laugh. “Why am I supposed to be?”
“Because you live here. You’re supposed to root for the home team.”
“I grew up in New York,” I said. “The Yankees are my home team.”
“But they suck,” said a third guy. None of them had much of a vocabulary.
“Maybe you’ve forgotten, but the Yankees have won quite a few championships. Twenty-six, to be exact.”
“So? The Dodgers won the NL West last year.”
“Right.” This was silly. “Who’s your favorite player?” In the spirit of the upcoming Inauguration, I reached across the aisle and tried to be friendly.
“Manny,” said the leader.
mannyDodger.jpg
Did I dare break the news that Manny was no longer a Dodger – at least not presently?
“He’s a free agent,” I said. “He could wind up with the Giants for all you know.”
“I like Nomar,” said another one.
nomar_garciaparra.jpg
These weren’t Dodgers fans. They were clueless Dodgers fans. 
“He’s on the verge of announcing his retirement,” I said. “The Dodgers haven’t re-signed him.”
“Russell Martin’s on the team,” said the leader.
russell.martin.jpg
“He’s a good catcher,” I acknowledged.
He’s a good catcher,” one of them mocked me in a high sing-song voice. “Too bad the Yankees suck.”
That was one “suck” too many. I lost my patience and let them all have it.
women-kickboxing.jpg“Who sucks now?” I shouted after the last one was splayed on the ground, on top of the others, bloodied and gasping for air. “Get. Off. My. Beach.”
(Yes, the ending is total fantasy. The real ending is that I neutralized them by boring them to death with great moments in Yankees history. Eventually, they moved on to harass somebody else and I continued my walk.)

31 comments

  1. ladybomber212

    And I thought Dodger Fans would have had some brains. They sound just like Red Sox fans almost. They didn’t even know S*** about Manny until after he was traded there. Those were bandwagoners….complete wannabees. Not even fans. I wish I could have been there…..they would have regretted the day they were concieved….let alone born. ;(

  2. jimmy27nyy

    Yes, Jane …

    (2-0) this winter in your battles vs. Yankee haters !!! … It’s a good thing that you weren’t carrying a drink with you, or a bowl of chili … Those [so-called] Dodgers fans would have ended up completely “soaked” like that Yankee hater, dinner guest, you KO’ed on Thanksgiving Day !!! … Now, only, if Robinson Cano can hit as good as you have this winter– he may just win the AL Batting Crown this year !!! … Jimmy [27NYY] http://baseballtheyankeesandlife.mlblogs.com/

  3. rosehof14

    Great post Jane, had me laughing all the way. Another great ending (showing your true Yankee side) would be to hand them all a dollar and tell them “To guy buy themselves a real team and see them next year!”

    COB
    http://cobf.mlblogs.com

  4. Jane Heller

    Erin and lbf, in defense of Dodgers fans, there are many diehards and I’ve seen how knowledgeable they are. The guys I met yesterday probably didn’t even follow baseball, judging by how little they knew. I just thought it was funny that they tried to intimidate me with the Yankees thing.

    LOL, levelboss. I like it.

    That stuff happens to me all the time, Jen. So frustrating. I don’t claim to know everything, but at least I know who’s on my team!

    You’re right, Jimmy. I did have that Thanksgiving Day dust-up. Maybe I should stop trying to uphold our honor! Well, that won’t happen. As you say, the important thing is Cano getting his groove back. I’d be very happy if that happened.

    Julia, my friend KP, the Red Sox fan I interviewed a few posts ago, tells me that the “Yankees suck” chant is one of her guilty pleasures. She loves it when it breaks out at Fenway and the Yankees aren’t even playing there.

    COB, I didn’t think of that. Rats.

    Steve, it certainly was suspicious that they mentioned former Red Sox players, but I honestly think they just picked names they’d been hearing about. Manny’s always in the news out here and Nomar has a charity with Mia that’s been all over TV lately. They weren’t serious fans of any team!

  5. iliveforthis

    Jane- This was probably one of the greatest posts I have ever read. I laughed so hard. And some of the comments that followed made me laugh harder. Like Erin’s post that the Dodgers don’t actually have fans. And then Level Boss with Gran Torre-no. And while I did wish the fantasy ending was true, neutralizing with facts was just as good.
    Emily
    http://deconstructingthoughts.mlblogs.com/

  6. bostonredsoxgirl46

    Jane,
    Mentally, I’m pretty sure you beat them up! And really, they loved Manny and Nomar–former Red Sox? LOL, they’re too funny. And way to go on giving them the Yankees history.
    I get the Yankees history pretty much every, single day from people who aren’t even Yankee fans. But I beat them up mentally as well!
    -Elizabeth
    http://redsoxgirl46.mlblogs.com

  7. Jane Heller

    Thanks, Emily. That’s high praise indeed! After I got home from my walk I told my husband the story. “You could have gotten yourself killed,” he said. “But they started it,” I said. “What are you, a four-year-old?” That’s the problem. I’m a four-year-old.

    Elizabeth, it was one thing for these guys not to know what they were talking about. But to say you can’t be a fan of a team because you live in the state of another team? That’s insane. They deserved a mental beating up!

  8. neal07

    Wow. That was an intense meeting. I get this kind of stuff a lot, and all these moron Yankee-haters can come up with is, “They buy all the best players.” A ton of these people also don’t even follow baseball. They just think the Yankees suck because people tell them to think the Yankees suck.
    http://newmexicanyanksfan.mlblogs.com

  9. hseely@twcny.rr.com

    She-Fan,

    All Dodgers fans are clueless Dodger fans.

    Just as all Yankee victories are great Yankee victories.

    el duque

  10. redstatebluestate

    Yes!!! Score: She-Fan 1, Clueless Dodger Fans 0. That’s funny. I get that a lot when people find out I’m a Cardinal fan in Chicago. Not so much from the Sox fans whom I’ve aligned myself with, but those idiot Cub fans give me a real hard time. Maybe I’ll use some of your moves next time… because, I think we all know I’ve been in quite a few Cub/Cardinal fights at Wrigley.
    –Jeff
    http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

  11. Jane Heller

    Neal, I think you’re right. “Yankees suck” is just the universal phrase for “I don’t know what I’m talking about.”

    So true about the victories, duque. There’s no such thing as an unsatisfying win. I particularly love blow-outs.

    I think you should write about some of your Cub/Cardinal fights on RSBS, Jeff. I know they’d be very entertaining.

  12. levelboss

    Derek Jeter has said that when people say ‘Yankees suck’, he takes it as a compliment.. i’ve heard it so many times that either i’m bored with it or i laugh..
    when the Yankees start crushing other teams this year you’re gonna hear it even more so – that just means that these people are being affected by it

  13. ricter

    Define “suck”:

    OK. How about this: 21 years between championships?

    SUCK.

    Center fielder who would rather get fat and dumb instead of playing for the team?

    SUCK

    Trading for the most selfish player in baseball?

    SUCK.

    Not re-signing said player after he carries team into playoffs?

    SUCK.

    Any team w/ Nomar on it?

    SUCK.

    Any sports team from LA?
    SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.SUCK.

    The Dodgers just suck. It’s a known fact.

  14. ricter

    Jane, next time people who have IQ’s that don’t even reach douyble digits and mono-syllabic vocabularies try to pontificate their blow hard main-stream opinions about sports to you, feel free to unleash me and my wrath of baditutde onto them.

    HOLD ME BACK!!! HOLD ME BACK!!! LEMME AT ‘EM!!!

    Everything from LA sucks. That’s a fact.

  15. Jane Heller

    I’ve heard Jeter say that, levelboss, and I’m glad he feels that way. I should start living by his example.

    MM, I love that you’re coming to my/the Yanks’ defense. But don’t lump those jerks in with all Dodgers fans. Or even L.A. Everything about it doesn’t suck. I promise.

    Good story, Jeff. People are just plain cracked, aren’t they? LOL about the hardcover books under your clothes to avoid stabbing. Maybe I should try that before walking on the beach again.

    I doubt it, Russell. It’s the Giants that really make Dodgers fans go off.

    You’re right, Prince. I knew there was something familiar about those guys. Maybe that’s why they broke into “WMCA” while I was telling them Yankees stories.

  16. dmennella

    Well done, Jane. This is why I typically don’t start arguments with Yankee fans. It’s hard to counter the whole 26-titles thing.

    I have the Lady GaGa record (and by have, I mean downloaded), but haven’t ventured far from “Just Dance.”

  17. bigjay21

    Pretty good…. but you should make sure that they didn’t even have a team until New York gave them one (aka “Say Thank You To Brooklyn”)…. With giving them a team and Boston giving them Manny, shouldn’t they be kissing the entire east coast’s *****?
    http://jerseybombers.mlblogs.com/

  18. Jane Heller

    Yeah, iceman, Laker fans would go ballistic at a Celtics cap. And there are A LOT of Laker fans around here. All I hear is Kobe Kobe Kobe!

    Good point, jerseybombers. I should have reminded them about the legacy/origin of their so-called team.

  19. raysrenegade

    I remember about 6 years ago when I used to hear that in St Petersburg, Florida, home of the Rays when I was out and about on the weekends.

    I even heard that kind of noise in North Carolina where they do not even have a baseball team, except for the minor leagues. I know I do not question a fans alliance unless I know I have seen them for over 30 games during a season.

    Since the Yankees and Red Sox do not come here 30 times, they must be on the fence the rest of the time. But, I will take fans anyways I can get them right now in the Trop. Even if they offer $ 1 dollar hot dog every game.

    Love the ending tho. Classic Ulma Thurman moment. All you needed was the yellow jumpsuit. I understand both sides of it, but some fans are still clueless even when they have a game program.

    Rays Renegade

    http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

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