I hope everyone had a lovely offseason, because I didn't. I mean, winter is never the best time of the year for me (I don't like the weather...) and this year was particularly bad. I dunno how it was in the US for all those Bay Area A's fans and the ones living elsewhere but the weather sucked in Switzerland. All I'm gonna say is that the stuff they show on travel commercials with beautiful snow-capped mountains is absolute crud, because in reality it's a bunch of dirty streets covered in slush that you have to walk in sub-zero temperatures so that you can go to school and listen to half of your teachers ramble on about their subject cause they don't know what to teach. Besides, my favorite teachers all left after last year so my enjoyment of the teaching at my school had already dipped. Eurgh.
Anyway, no one really cares about that; what people care about is the fact that baseball is back. About damn time, because I had spent most of my winter waiting for two things: Spring Training and 50 Cent's new album. Luckily for me, Spring Training arrived on schedule, cause 50's album and I sit here writing this while sadly acknowledging the fact that I have waited for the album for over half a year with nothing to show for it except a new mixtape and a couple of singles. They're good songs, which is encouraging but I still want that album. I feel bad for those Dr. Dre fans who are still waiting for Detox 10+ years later. Meanwhile, I (still) sit here wondering why Nicki Minaj and Justin Bieber are alive and making millions while Tupac and Biggie are dead. It's like someone more important than me is showing me a middle finger as if to say "And you weren't even alive when those guys where making music, sucka..."
Yeah, I'm a hip-hop fan, but more than anything I'm a baseball fan and tuning into the A's first Spring Training game against Milwaukee was pretty much the best thing that has happened this year. OK, they lost but it's Spring Training and just the fact that there is baseball in the first place is perfectly good enough for me. Plus, it was fun finally being able to get on a game thread after a long, long time. And, now that 2012 is officially behind us and 2013 has started the Giants WS win of last year can be completely forgotten in anticipation of the A's 10th championship title. Because I'm totally calling it, just like last year. And the year before. And the year before. And pretty much every year ever. The cool thing is that every year I can say "This year's our year" because you can do stuff like that in sports. That's one of the reasons why I love sports.
I mean, I'm a pretty single-minded guy. I think of music, baseball and this sweet pair of Air Jordans I saw at a store. And school as well, because if I don't I'll fail the year then I'll fail school, won't get into college, won't get a job, won't get a wife, won't have kids, won't get respect from anyone and will end up working as (insert your most hated job here) until I die. Speaking of which, I have an English test next week. Sweet.
One thing I like about this season is that there is serious hope in Oaktown. I mean, I was excited after the 81-81 campaign but last year Oakland shocked many by making the playoffs and passing the Rangers on the last day of the season. It was the best season I've ever experienced as an A's fan, and so I'm pumped about 2013. Some people have said that Oakland got by with a little skill and a lotta luck last year but that's not true: it took more than luck to sweep the Rangers in that season-ending series and it took a lot more than luck to outscore our opponents by almost 100 runs. Sadly, some of the faces from last year will be missing, like Inge and Gomes, and that's a shame because not only were a lot of those guys good players but they were leaders as well. It's sad to see them go but at the same time it'll be cool to see how some of the younger guys like Reddick or Parker develop and (hopefully) become leaders. Well, leaders in all aspects but facial hair because I completely agree with Cespedes' reaction to Reddick's beard when asked. At the same time, I love it. It's funny, cause a few years back the big facial hair headline in A's camp was Cahill's wispy goatee that I could probably beat if I tried hard enough.
Another great thing is that I'll be able to read about all the A's - and MLB - headline while on the bus on the morning to go to school so that I can focus on something other than the butt of the guy who's standing inches away from where I'm sitting because my bus is always so crowded. Sometimes I just can't wait to get out of those buses, especially the ones where the doors open and fold in on the inside and whack me cause I'm always standing in the exact spot where they close because there's no space. Did I ever mention that all those Swiss tourism commercials are a lie?
Last but not least, I'm glad to see Choice and Russell play like pros so far in Spring Training. I think the A's have something special there and it would be nice to see both of them come up and tear up the majors together before winning the A's fourth consecutive World Series. The A's may be 2-4, but I've never felt better about a losing record. Especially because the games don't actually count, except in my mind and the mind of every other baseball fan...
2013 is gonna be a good year, and not just because I await new albums from Fifty, Jay-Z, Eminem and Joe Satriani. It's going to be a great year for sports, and while I'm bummed out about Green Bay falling out of the playoffs, the Lakers are playing a lot better, Man U is running away with the Premier League and the Oakland A's are preparing for another sweet baseball season. Screw winter, I like summer.