Yankees Cap in Santa Barbara: The Sequel

My last post was about how I had a run-in over this.

Today I ventured out in it again….this time to a local theater where Roger Durling, the executive director of the Santa Barbara International Film Festival, gave everybody a preview of the movies we’ll be seeing between January 22nd and February 1st. The Festival is a big deal here in town, and since I love movies almost as much as I love baseball, it’s a big deal for me too.
I settled into my seat with a few hundred other Santa Barbarans and braced for an incident involving the words “Yankees” and “suck.” Maybe yesterday was not an aberration and I’d be called out again for my allegiance to the Bombers.
Nope. Nothing. This was such a polite crowd that nobody even asked me to remove my cap so they could see over my head. Crisis averted.
Roger kicked off the afternoon by telling us about the stars who were coming to accept awards and attend parties, including Kate Winslet and Penelope Cruz. But it was when he said, “Clint Eastwood,” that I really snapped to attention.
Clint Eastwood? Clint “Get off my lawn” Eastwood? One of my all-time faves?

Turns out he’ll be here on Thursday, January 29th. I probably have no shot at meeting him, but stranger things have happened.
“I wonder if he likes baseball,” I whispered to my husband Michael, who told me to be quiet.
“I bet he’s a Giants fan,” I said anyway. “He used to be the mayor of Carmel, which is closer to San Francisco than L.A.”
“You have a one-track mind,” said Michael. “Give baseball a rest, O.K.?”
“I’m just -“
keith-olbermann shush.jpg
I sat silently as I learned about the Festival’s opening film, a political thriller called “Nothing But The Truth,” with Kate Beckinsale, Matt Dillon and Alan Alda….about some foreign films that are rumored to be Academy Award nominees….and about “Going Home,” a documentary about the Beach Boys’ Brian Wilson, who will be on hand for a Q&A.
I was thinking how much I was looking forward to the movies and yet….I was also thinking how antsy I’m getting about spring training. I want baseball to start!

Just then, something amazing happened. The Festival’s director said, “This weekend we’ll be showing a movie called ‘Sugar.’ A big hit at Sundance, it’s a terrific film about baseball.”
All right! I gave my husband a “So there” look.
“Sugar” is the story of a ballplayer named Miguel “Sugar” Santos, who’s recruited from his home in the Dominican Republic to play for a minor league team in the Midwest after he masters the art of the knuckle curve.
The movie is about his adjustment to life in the American Heartland and gives us inside looks at both minor league baseball and the immigrant experience.
Here’s a review I pulled from Variety. Sounds interesting, doesn’t it? But hey, it’s a baseball movie. How bad could it be?
I’ll weigh in once I see it. In the meantime, check out this clip of the writer-directors speaking at the Sundance Festival a few days ago.
One more thing….Happy birthday to my Red Sox-loving brother-in-law up there in ice-cold Concord. Have a great day, Geoff!


  1. hseely@twcny.rr.com


    You should get out of that two-bit hellhole and move to a place where you don’t take your life into your hands every time you walk the street, wearing the symbol of your religious preference. I can’t imagine the armed camp of thugs and warlords that comprises modern Santa Barbara, but I would not venture outside without a Kevlar jacket, and even then, I’d scramble bush to bush. I know you are doing the Lord’s work, but, still, we worry.

    el duque

  2. juliasrants

    Jane, That would be great if you could meet Clint! And how dare your husband “shhh” you! (My husband isn’t brave enough to do that to me!) I look forward to hearing about the Festival and your encounter (hopefully!) with Dirty Harry! Maybe he’ll be able to give you a few pointers on how to protect yourself from roaming gangs of Yankee haters!


  3. Jane Heller

    You’re so right, duque. Time to move to Syracuse where I can spread the Word as I go car to car scraping windshields.

    I hope I can go to the Clint function, Julia. It all depends on whether my friend Deborah, who has a ticket to the event, will invite me to be her “plus one.” If not, I’ll still get to see the baseball movie!

  4. levelboss

    Jane, what’s your favorite baseball movie of all time?
    (maybe you mentioned this before but i haven’t read it)

  5. Erin Kathleen

    I’m glad this crowd was much nicer to you about your allegiance to the Yankees (and I’m sure the Dodgers have many diehard fans. Sometimes I forget that sarcasm doesn’t translate well over the internets). But your husband really shushed you and told you not to talk so much about baseball? That could be grounds for divorce at my house!

    And “Sugar” definitely sounds like a must-see. It combines two of my favorite things: documentaries about hot-button political issues and baseball. Does it address any of the controversies surrounding MLB exploiting youth in third world countries? Or is it more like a biography?


  6. Elizabeth D

    I think Clint Eastwood should be the one wondering if he could possibly meet you. Why does Michael not like baseball as much as you? I was LOLing when he was telling you to be quiet, and then your victorious ‘so there’ look… LOL. Baseball cannot come soon enough, but ‘Sugar’ will do in the mean time.

  7. ricter

    Jane! Jane!! I found a catcher for my all “Q” team

    Humberto Quintero!

    This is cool. It means there is hope for my super mega team of Q’s.

    About the Yankee cap: I just read an article about this author who wrote a book with a metaphor about the King of Tailand and got arrested and thrown in Jail for 3 years.

    Free speech is a GIFT. Love your first ammendment! Wear your Yankee cap WITH pride and let them excerise their first ammendment by giving you crap about it.

    The fact that they didn’t rip on you this time is great.

    Frankly, I love it when people get all up in my grill about my FAN-dom. I say “bring it on! say what you want. This is America! MY team is better than YOUR team, so HA!!!!!”

  8. Jane Heller

    Will do, Jen. I’m seeing it Friday night, I think.

    Levelboss, my favorite baseball movie is “Pride of the Yankees.” Love Gary Cooper’s performance as Gehrig. Love Babe Ruth’s cameo. Love everything except the tragic ending, of course. The runners up are “Bull Durham” and “Field of Dreams.”

    Now that you mention it, Happy, I guess I’ve read that Clint does like golf. He owns that big resort in Carmel/Pebble Beach. Even so, I just want to be able to go up to him and say…..Uh-oh. I’m speechless already.

    Erin, the funny thing about my husband is that he’s as big a baseball fan as I am – just in a different way. If you read my book, you’ll come away from it thinking he’s the hero. He knows all the history and can tell you about every player on every team. He just doesn’t TALK about it 24/7 like I do.

    Elizabeth, see my comment to Erin. Michael LOVES baseball. He’s just more sane about it. I honestly don’t think I could be married to a guy who didn’t love the game.

    I do wear my cap with pride, mm. Bring it on is right!

  9. Jane Heller

    Jeff, didn’t I mention that I’m married to Keith? Sometimes I call him Michael when I’m blogging. To protect his privacy.

  10. Jane Heller

    Sorry. He and Chris aren’t speaking since the election when Chris thought he hogged the spotlight. Would Rachel Maddow’s be okay?

  11. rockymountainway

    Yankee haters in Santa Barbara? What gives? Maybe they just couldn’t find anyone to accost in Oxnard so they got bored and made a road trip? Here’s a little tip if you like Richard Gere (sorry Rich if I’m messing up your privacy) but I have it on good authority he loves to shop around the Pier 1 but who knows maybe he’s a Dodger lover too.

  12. Jane Heller

    I’ve seen him at Yankees games, Tom. I think he’d be fine with my cap. But you never know. Haters of the Evil Empire lurk everywhere, even in Santa Barbara.

  13. jimmy27nyy

    Hey, Jane …

    The movie “Sugar” looks like a good movie … I look forward to your review !!! … And, maybe, the crowd at the movie preview heard about your two other KO’s of Yankee haters, and didn’t want to take any chances of getting you angry. Or, maybe, there was a rumor that if anyone gave you a hard time about the Yankees, Clint Eastwood was going to step-in, and come to your rescue !!! … But, Jane, based on your (2-0) record, I think you would be able to defend yourself, just fine !!! … Jimmy [27NYY] http://baseballtheyankeesandlife.mlblogs.com/

  14. Jane Heller

    I’m really looking forward to “Sugar,” Jimmy. Will definitely report after I see it. And what a good idea recruiting Clint to defend me against any haters!

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