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Queens of the Stone Age, my Oakland Pride and Last Night’s Game

1.       Queens of the Stone Age

Last night my wife and I drove up to the Fox Theater in Oakland to see Queens of the Stone Age.  What this has to do with the A’s might not seem apparent.  I’ll try to connect the dots later.  The show was awesome.  The Queens started by playing all 11 songs from their first album from 1998.  For some reason, this music has been expensive and hard to buy on CD or vinyl.  I have it as an mp3 download.  They were selling it at the show though, and now I see it on Amazon for $11.99, so something must have changed.  I realized this is a tour to promote a newly available album from 1998.  The show rocked from beginning to end.  Their 2 encores were all songs from the other 4 newer albums and they were great too.  The last song of the second encore was the one that sounds like a dot matrix printer from Songs for the Deaf.  I’m not into that many things, but I just love Queens of the Stone Age.

2.       My Oakland Pride

If you haven’t been to the Fox Theater, you should check it out.  It is restored and beautiful inside.  The seats in the lower section of the balcony are leather , comfortable and spacious.  The sound is good.  I made a case last summer in an AN post about how in the last 10 years, I have gone to about 70 A’s games.  I live in San Jose, and I can count on one hand the number of times I have spent my entertainment dollars in Oakland besides A’s games.  When I go to Oakland, I am going to A’s games.  But after going to opening night, I found myself in Oakland again on April 11th.  I realized that 2 Queens shows ago, I went to see Queens of the Stone Age and Nine Inch Nails at the Arena now known as Oracle.  So I correct myself, if I am spending my entertainment dollar in Oakland, I am at an A’s game OR a Queens of the Stone Age concert.  I have been thinking about my love of the A’s.  Would I love them as much if they moved to San Jose?  I still think of the Philadelphia A’s as my team, it’s hard to believe I wouldn’t think of them as my team if they moved to the city where I live.  But on the other hand, I like Oakland.  If they could find a nice plot of land in Oakland and build a stadium I’d surely make the drive up at least as often as I do now.  When it comes to talking about how serious a fan someone is of a team, I think you could treat attendance like you treat voting.  People say, “If you don’t vote you don’t have a right to bitch about the government.”  One could say, “If you don’t go to A’s games, are you really an Oakland A’s fan?”  I know there are AN people who go to a lot more games than me.  But I am sure there are some who live in the area who go to a lot less.  Your team needs you.  Get out and vote.

3.       Last Night’s Game

Your team, my team, our team is showing signs of greatness.  I was sort of chuckling at the AN angst of them starting 1-4, because I could already see the greatness showing through.  Clearly the pitching is dominant, and clearly the hitting will come around.  If the A’s hadn’t made any roster moves in the offseason this team was already better than .500 just by getting older, but the moves they made were good, and they are better than that now.  We watched the late innings at home and listened to Ken and Vince for the 10th as we drove up 880.  This was a game the A’s really could have lost.  Buehrle was just about unhittable.  Ken said, “the best thing that happened in this game for the A’s was when they took Buehrle out.”  The A’s hit the next pitcher, Thornton, hard.  LaRoche’s double, Coco’s line out, Barton’s fly, all hit well.  On TV Glen and Fosse were talking about how Barton’s fly should have been caught.  When he hit that pitch it looked like trouble right off the bat.  It was well hit, and they had already been talking about the swirling winds.  Could Pierre have caught it?  Yeah.  SHOULD he have?  Well, he is a major leaguer and we should expect great plays out there, but that was a tough play.  Tough wind, well hit ball into the corner, tailing away from him.  I wouldn’t have been too outraged if the official scorer had given Barton a hit.  When Suzuki couldn’t field a foul pop behind the plate a half inning later, it just emphasized how tough it was out there.  Then Suzuki hits a bomb in the 10th, Fuentes converts another save, and the A’s have snatched a victory from the jaws of defeat.

All of a sudden the A’s at 5-5 have righted the ship.  Have we had a start yet which wasn’t a quality start?  Braden’s first start wasn’t masterful, but last night’s sure was.  7 K’s in 6 innings.  Tyson Ross looked dominant too.  Texas is streaking, but eventually streakers get caught and tackled by security.  What happened to streakers on the field anyway?  I guess it is a anachronism from a bygone era.  Maybe I need to restart that trend and run around on the field naked for the next A’s game.  I don’t know if that really shows my love of the A’s though, it would more likely just get me tackled and jailed.  I need to show my support in other ways.  Like going to A’s games and wearing my A’s gear to the Queens of the Stone Age concert.  Let’s go, Oakland.

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