Only A Few More Days To My Thanksgiving Throwdown

Long time readers of this blog might remember last year’s Thanksgiving post, when I recounted the trouble I encountered as a Yankee fan at my friend’s Rhonda’s house in LA. (My family is back east, so my husband and I always spend turkey day at her place, where she hosts a beautiful dinner with all of her close friends and family members.)
Last year, the Yankees didn’t even make the playoffs, so I got an earful from Rhonda and her brother, who grew up in Chicago and are Cubs fans. I also heard it from her friend Mary Ann and her son Antonio, true blue Dodger fans. In fact, just about everybody at the table decided to make the Yankees the punch line of their jokes, and I was stuck defending my team by flashing the tattoo on my leg.
OK, I don’t have a tattoo but I wished I did. People ended up flinging insults at me and I ended up flinging food at them, and it got ugly.
This year should be very different, given that the Yankees won the World Series while the Cubs and Dodgers were home playing golf, but will it be? I’m anticipating the following from the hostile crowd:
“They bought the championship.”
“All the umpires’ bad calls went in their favor.”
“Jeter’s old.”
“A-Rod’s a cheater.”
“They bought the championship.”
“Burnett’s a head case.”
“Damon throws like a girl.”
“Teixeira chokes in the clutch.”
“They bought the championship.”
I would prefer a peaceful Thanksgiving, but I just know I’m going to need ammunition on Thursday.
So if anyone has any great comebacks, I’d be glad to hear them. I do have a weapon I didn’t have last year: the She-Fan Cam.
If anyone says something malicious about the Yanks, they’ll run the risk of having their foolish remarks published on YouTube, not to mention on this blog. And there’s another reason they should be afraid: I’m in charge of bringing the apple pie this year. If somebody isn’t appropriately respectful, they could wind up with this in their face.
I really hate to make other people cry, but if I’m pushed….



    my dad and i thought up some responses to use at your dinner. fortunately, he is coming to dinner with me on thanksgiving so the yankee fans out number the sox fans (2-1).
    these are some responses:
    “Jealousy will get you no where.”
    If they say: “Jeter’s old, Burnett’s a head case, Damon throws like a girl, and Teixeira chokes in the clutch.” You say “and imagine we won the WORLD SERIES despite all that.”
    They say, “Damon throws like a girl” To which you calmly say without throwing anything: “We let Damon play to even things up for you lesser teams.”
    They say, “They bought the championship.” you remind them that ” At least we spend money wisely unlike say the red sox or mets.”
    and whatever they say, just keep picturing Mo on the mound with happy teammates running wildly to hug him after the winning out. There is nothing they can say that will wipe the grin off your face if you keep seeing that in in your head. We won!

  2. southernbelle

    Jane: Haha yes! You get them! No matter what, people are going to say that the Yankees bought the title. They are just frustrated and jealous that the Yankees are so good and their teams….aren’t. I hope you have a nice, fight-free holiday. At least Thanskgiving can take my mind off of how much I miss my Yankees…

  3. ooaooa

    Its tried and true and has worked for me for years. I tell agitators “In a perfect world we would all be Yankee fans”. Need anymore be said?
    Happy Turkey Day to you and yours!

  4. Jane Heller

    Excellent ideas for responses, Barbara and Harold! The best one is to hold the image of Mo in my mind and just smile, knowing we won. I will definitely do that.

    Yes, at least Thanksgiving will distract us from not having any baseball, Virginia. And we have so much to be thankful for this year. So while I’m eating my friend’s turkey, I’ll revel in all the ways I’m thankful.

    So that’s what you tell agitators, John? I’ll try that one, but I’m not sure it’ll fly. In fact, I think it might be the apple pie that will fly.

  5. unclemikenj

    Hi, Jane. There is an easy answer to any club’s smack talk about the Yankees. 27 answers, in fact. Hey, I got used to saying “27” instead of “26” real fast. As Mel Allen would have said, How about that. You could say it as, “How many have you got?” Or “Doncha wish your ballcub was hot like mine?” Or, best of all, “Shut up or I’ll buy you Mets tickets.” That’ll scare ’em! (You don’t actually have to hand money over to The Other Team. It’s just a threat.)

    If you’re the T-Day hostess, that means you control the food. And when you control the food, you control everything. As George Steinbrenner would say, You are The Boss. You decide who gets what. People who talk smack about the Yankees get the fish heads like on the Thanksgiving episode of “What’s Happening.”

    Also, I finally finished the book today. And I thought I was neurotic about the team. What struck me the most was how many people would rather see their team and the Yankees both lose than see their team and the Yankees both win. These are people who do not deserve to see a World Series, not even on television. It’s a great story, and I’m glad you wrote it. Even if your spellcheck had to be driven crazy with “Mientkiewicz.”

    Michael (not the husband)

  6. Jane Heller

    Peace and fire, Paul. I like it. And, better still, I’ll try it!

    Michael, I’ve tried the “How many have you got” and they just scoff. Maybe I’ll use the Mets line. LOL. Unfortunately, I’m not the hostess, which is why I’ll be bringing the apple pie. I’m at her mercy for the turkey and all the rest of the good stuff, so I sort of have to behave myself. So you finished the book? And yes, there is someone else who’s neurotic about the Yanks. Many of us, in fact, according to the mail I’ve gotten. You are not alone! Oh, and yes, the spelling of Mientkiewicz nearly drove me nuts! Glad you enjoyed it.

  7. daisytat

    You can ask this: “So, if George Steinbrenner had come to your city in the 70’s and said ‘I’m going to spend all my money making your baseball team a profitable, world champion’, you guys would have said ‘no thanks George, that’s ok, take your money elsewhere'”
    I think not.
    Have a great Thanksgiving Jane!

  8. gmd0813

    You can always tell them that if money can buy a championship, we wouldn’t have been waiting since 2000 to get another one!! The Steinbrenners are only the 5th wealthiest of baseball owners – the 4 ahead of them (Twins, Braves, Tigers, Rangers) would obviously rather pocket the money than reinvest in their team. We’re lucky our owners are willing to get out there and spend! Also, with profit sharing and the increased ticket sales, the Yankees increase the net worth of every other team they play!

    I recall several bad calls going against the Yankees in the series. Damon doesn’t have the best arm, Tex didn’t produce as he should and Jeter is getting older – but without all of them, we wouldn’t have made it to the series!!
    Great idea to hold the image of Mo in your head – that light from that smile will blur those nay sayers!
    Enjoy the bird!

  9. Jane Heller

    HAHA, Daisy! I know how I would answer that question, but we’ll see how my dinner companions will. Thanks!

    Gail, that’s the argument I always give: if money could buy a championship, why haven’t we won it every year? We’re very lucky to have ownership that spends its money on the team. Some years it’s been spent more wisely than others, but one thing is for sure: the 2009 acquisitions were all superb. I will hold the image of Mo and he will get me through the day!

  10. mlbmom

    Its not what I would say, as that would be nothing.
    Its what I would wear. has two tshirts on their website that just may do the trick….
    One has a HUGE number 27 on the front, and in smaller (but not insignificant) print below, “Nuff Said.”
    My second choice would be the t that says “DYNASTY DEFINED” handily printed with interlocking N and Y in dynasty….Clever folks, those Nike people….
    My third choice would be the “No Crying In Baseball” tshirt.
    And, I would keep my smug grin on….daring somebody to say something…..
    AHHHHHH – all we have to be thankful for……


  11. Jane Heller

    I will head to the Nike Store site and check out your terrific suggestions, Wendy. I especially like the idea of the “Dynasty Defined” one. I love my “No Crying…” shirt, but I think something specifically Yankees will work better for the occasion – along with the smug grin, of course.


    Comebacks? Hmmm…You could always casually say, “You know, I think those Cubs/Dodgers windshield protectors actually let you park in the handicapped spaces too.” In case parking is an issue during Black Friday shopping. This can also be changed to bumper stickers, and can apply to any other team than the Yankees. Or you could mention that they can finally take those pictures of the World Series trophy off of milk cartons now that it is home, where it belongs. If the trophy could click its heels and say “There’s no place like home” and appear at Yankee Stadium, that would be great too. I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.


    I went back and copied this comment from Christy after the Yanks won the series. I think her comments are perfect.

    “Hideki Matsui didn’t drive in 6 runs with his bank account. Nope. And Mo didn’t throw goose eggs with dollar bills. Absolutely not. And Derek – he didn’t get more hits than any Yankee in the history of the world with money – The Yankees, they did it with heart, with passion, with clutch, with team. It’s funny; the Yankee haters have always been there. When The Mick, Rajah, Yogi, Whitey, etc., were winning Championships, the Yankee haters found a way to resent their success. Then it was Reggie, Thurman, Paul O’Neil, Catfish, Louisiana Lightening, etc. The Yankee haters were there. I wonder . . . could it be nothing more than jealousy? Jealous of 27 championships? Perhaps it’s nothing more. The Yankees won 27 championships because they are the perfect reflection of this great city, New York City. New York, New York; powerful, huge ego, pounding beat, relentless, strength, fast, sweat, the greatest city in the history of the universe, absolutely like no other! The Yankees, just like the city, the greatest team in the history of the universe, absolutely like no other. New York and the Yankees, they go together. It’s not the money. Nope. It’s simply in the DNA. “

  14. Jane Heller

    Jenn, are you contemplating some pie smashing too? Uh-oh. I hope we both restrain ourselves. 🙂

    Galsmom, I really love the idea that the trophy is no longer missing. It’s home all right, and I wouldn’t mind if it stayed there in 2010.

    Very cool that you copied Christy’s comments, Melissa. I remember them well. Btw, she is a he! I went to high school with him, and he’s one of the guys I used to go to Yankees games with. He’s been a fan of the boys for a long time.


    First I thought Cat was a girl and now Christy. Ah, I get it like Christy Matthewson! You could pick almost any sentence in his comment to make a great t-shirt slogan. How cool that he is an old friend – I always thought he must know you well by the comments.


  16. Jane Heller

    Maybe I should ask everyone to write Mr. or Ms. before their names, Melissa. LOL! Christy is mentioned in my book where I talk about how I used to go to the games in high school. We haven’t seen each other since one of the reunions, but we stay in touch about the Yanks.

  17. thefreak

    Just remind them that how can you buy a championship when at any given time in the line up there were two thirds of home grown talant out there.

    outfield: Damon, CABRERA, GARDNER (defensively mostly but he was out there)

    infield: A-Rod, JETER, CANO, Tex
    Catcher: POSADA
    dh: MATSUI
    Pitcher: cc, aj, PETTITTE, COKE, HUGHS, JOBA, ABILIDAJO, ROBERTSON and did I mention RIVERA.

    and I’m sure I may have missed a couple…….

    if that don’t work try this……. The difference in the term “Wait’ll next year”? The yanks actually have a shot to do it again. The rest just tell themselves that because they know they are full of crap-ola..

  18. Jane Heller

    We did have a lot of homegrown talent, Kenny. I’d add Ramiro Pena to that list. Will be sure to bring the point home on Thursday!

  19. robinlyn

    Hi Jane,

    These look great. Let me know if any really work. I’m going to GA for Christmas and my friends I’m staying with hate anything Yankees. They already said I don’t have to buy any gifts if I denounce the Yankees, I refused. I’m debating dressing their baby with Yankee WS gear or just casually wearing Yankee gear for the whole week! Have a great Thanksgiving!

  20. Jane Heller

    You have Yankees-hating friends too, Robin? LOL. I think you should dress their baby in our gear – from head to toe – AND wear your Yankees clothes all week. They’ll either kick you out or be converted. Hopefully, it will be the latter. Enjoy your holiday.

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