There’s something about the way Manny Ramirez, at the press conference earlier this year announcing his return to the Dodgers, warped a famous Arnold Schwarzenegger line to his own ends that warms my cockles. It’s gotta rankle the Massachusetts branch of the California governor’s mansion too, but that’s not as good (nor as painful) as the nasty irony that Arnie, in The Terminator, promised “I’ll be back,” and then returned to rain down terror and destruction upon a police division house, just like the beating the Governator is putting on the entire state right now. Manny’s return has been a far more benevolent, self-effacing, dare I say unifying gesture, and he’s settling back into kicking ass with a bat quite nicely. On my way out of town last Sunday afternoon I happily absorbed his contributions to the Dodgers 14-2 shellacking of the Rockies (2 for 4 with a run scored), and he wasn’t even the story—Kemp’s grand slam was, along with the rest of the offensive attack and the much fretted-over pitching (rookie James McDonald was the starter, who only went four and a third before getting backed up by a strong bullpen effort).
I use Manny’s image and line not to equate myself in any way with the shrugging, good-humored slugger, but just because it makes me feel good to see the Dodgers integrating this notorious ne’er-do-well into the big picture and emerging into this early part of the season as a team, not to mention a team (so far) to be reckoned with. And that 14-2 bit of Sunday afternoon breeze blew me out of town toward a great trip of fun, rejuvenation and investigation into the future from which I finally returned yesterday. So yes, I’m ba-a-a-a-ack too, and ready to start up again. But not just yet! But as soon as I finish up with the real world I’ll be checking in (probably no later than tomorrow) with notes on Bea Arthur, bloggers on DVDs, the Earth Day premiere, giant crocodiles, and my own answers to Professor Peabody’s questions. And certainly, if you have not yet submitted your own answers, know that there is so such thing as a due date and that all entries, whenever they are posted, will be happily received. I really enjoyed keeping up with them over my short vacation and hope that we have not yet hit the end of the road on this particular test-taking period.
The lights are back on. The fire has been lit. How was your week?