My name is Joe, aka Optimist Prime. I am an A's fan. And that means I read everything I can get my hands on that pertains to the A's. Sometimes when I have down time at my desk, I will search for new A's information, and as such I run across your articles.
Usually, I don't agree with what you write. I am a fan and anyone who writes anything I perceive as negative about my team I take offense to. That being said, it does not give me or anyone else license to launch into a personal attack. I made a comment in a blog on our site that stated you were fat and miserable. At the time I wrote that I thought it was funny. After going back and reading it, I don't think it is funny any longer. In fact, I think it is a lousy comment. I'm sorry Ray.
God knows there are things in my life that I could be teased about, and if I were in your shoes, reading our blog, I know I would be hurt and offended by a comment like I made. Sure, I don't think anyone on our site literally hates you, or wishes ill on you. But lack of intent does not excuse the act.
This past year I was in Boston to watch a Marlins/Red Sox game. A family of four was walking down the aisle in Yankees gear. Almost the entire section stood up, pointed, and started loudly chanting "A**hole". I was pretty shocked. I think that was over the line.
It's just a game. It's baseball. And it's a gentleman's game. Not the excluding women type of gentleman's game, but one played gentlemanly. I would like to say my actions were not gentlemanly, and if I met you in a bar, I would shake your hand, buy you a beer, and proceed to vehemently disagree with you about your views on our team. I know for a fact I would not be a jerk and call you any names. That would be beneath me. Under the veil of anonymity that the internet provides it sometimes lures us into making comments we would not make face to face to another human being. It's not about having a thick skin it's about being a gentleman, or being a good human being.
I think it is easy to get caught up in that anonymity and hurl rocks over the fence. But there are real people on the other side, with real feelings. Sometimes we forget that, like I did.
Ray, please accept my apology.