How I Assisted the Red Sox Last Night
So, this was really weird. And totally random.
After work last night, I drove to a nearby gas station to fill up. I had to drive up to (you guessed it) Salem to install some carbon monoxide detectors and check in on the recent work done by an electrician (I am crossing my fingers that the fire department inspection goes well today so that the smoke certificate can be obtained.) Anyway, I pulled up to the pump and IMMEDIATELY recognized the man standing less than 4 feet to my left. Julian Tavarez. He was asking this guy all gussied up in bicycle gear for directions. Evidently, he was completely lost and could not find his way home. This is understandable, I guess, if you are new to the area and you get spilled out into backroads from the 95. I waved at him and he nodded to me. I'm not sure what triggered the wave. When I saw Johnny Pesky in a parking lot in Swampscott, I shouted his name at him. Not classy, but it was one of those knee jerk reactions.
After a couple of minutes, it became clear that Bikey Jones was not helping, so Julian came over to yours truly and asked me how to get to (the street he was looking for). Let me first say that he was perfectly mannered. He extended his hand and introduced himself: "Hi, my name is Julian Tavarez. I pitch for the Boston Red Sox." I (a) told him that I knew who he was and (b) gave him my name. He apologized for his "accent." which, truth be told, was not at all severe. I offered to write some directions down for him, and he thanked me but urged me to pump my gas first. I then decided that it would be easier to escort him there than write it all down to which he agreed and thanked me. As I pumped, he was showing off a high definition-looking television and stereo combination deal (situated in the trunk area of his shiny hummer-like vehicle) to a group of males who had quietly started to gather around him. I caught him say something about getting this or that customized in Florida. I finished with the gas, got in my car, looked at him and the group of males and literally said, "Are you ready?" This was so funny. Here I am, little old me in my Ford Escort with no air conditioning and a side view mirror secured with tape, prompting Julian Tavarez to get in the car. He got in and followed me all the way to his destination. The whole time, I kept thinking: Tavararez is driving behind me. He's reading my bumper stickers. He's depending on me to get him home. No one else knows that Tavarez is behind me. The bumper sticker thing is especially amusing, as one of them is "I'm Straight But Not Narrow" and he was once accused of making an anti-gay comment at a game. Maybe this will make him think a little. Liberals who support gay rights can be nice enough to escort lost Red Sox pitchers home. Don't you forget it, Julian!
When we reached the cross street, I got out of the car and explained that this was indeed the street he was looking for and asked him if any of it looked familiar. He said he thought so, but wasn't totally sure. He then asked me if I lived close by. I said no. He asked me where I lived. I told him. He offered me a ticket to a game for my hospitality. Mind you, we were in a very busy intersection with no shoulder and lots of impatient drivers swarming around. I said, "Thanks, that's very nice of you, but that's okay." Yes, I'm kicking myself a little but it was awkward.
So, there you have it. My Julian Tavarez encounter.
The thing that upsets me a little is the fact that I've developed a little soft spot for him and won't be as inclined to throw styrofoam bricks at the television when he exits the bullpen. Maybe the soft spot will harden the next time he sucker punches someone during a game. Who knows?
So, the Texas make up game is today. Schilling vs. Rheinecker. 2:05.