My Morning in Exile

Columbus, Ohio has the highly annoying habit of scheduling trick-or-treating on nights other than Halloween. They call it “beggar’s night” and after 18 years in this town, I’ve still never heard an adequate explanation for why kids can’t go door-to-door on the 31st. Some have suggested non-interference with high school or college football, but they move it even when Halloween falls on a Monday-Thursday. Some have claimed that, many years ago, Columbus held some city-wide Halloween party on the 31st and they wanted people to be able to do both, but no such beast exists today. There’s really no good explanation. My suburb actually does it on the 31st most years, but this year they’re falling in with Columbus. So we go trick-or-treating with the kids tonight, 6pm-8pm, followed by a good hour of trying to bring my children down from their sugar highs before bed.

So I guess what I’m saying is, no one email me with mid-game spoilers, because I’m going to be DVRing that bad boy and watching it late. In the meantime:

  • The post in which I write “don’t panic” in large friendly letters on the cover.
  • Pedro is probably going to get shelled tonight.
  • I can’t decide if I’m more surprised that FOX did nothing to make me angry last night or more angry that I have nothing to be angry about today.
  • ESPN’s Howard Bryant has no sense of decency, sir. At long last he has no sense of decency.
  • Tim Hudson is about to agree to a three-year extension with the Braves. Frank Wren trades the wrong superfluous starter in 3 . . .2 . . .1
  • Omar Minaya is a dead man walking.
  • And if anyone cares, my daughter is dressing up like a witch, my son is dressing up like a construction worker, and my wife and I are dressing up like two suburban parents carrying travel mugs filled with liquor around the neighborhood while hoping nobody notices.

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    Comments

    1. Craig Calcaterra said...

      I think Vazquez is the wrong one—they should trade Lowe even if they have to eat salary—but I realize that reasonable people disagree on this.

    2. YankeesfanLen said...

      BTW, I’d go around here with a Bernie Madoff mask except people might either A) shoot me, or b) wonder why John Sterling wasn’t in Philadelphia that night.
      Ahhh, they’d know it was me by the big dog with the barrel under his neck.

    3. Grant said...

      When I was a child in the bizarre Maryland exurb of Columbia we actually had two trick-or-treating nights. One was on Halloween, and it was around the neighborhood. The other was some Friday evening (usually) before and was at the local “village center” (smallish shopping center with grocery store, liquor store, and most other daily necessity-type shops, plus restaurants) and allowed the local merchants to hand us candy. I think it was supposed to be a way to build community among shopkeepers and citizens. But really, the candy for this one was provided by the village center, and so usually was pretty low-grade (lots of those ghastly peanut chews).

      And really, what kid needs two nights trick or treating? Talk about obesity epidemics.

    4. Mark said...

      Craig, if you and the better half are both taking the kiddies out T-or-T-ing, then who’s at home defending Chez Calcaterra from roving hordes of tp-weilding chilluns, all profoundly disturbed at the lack of a satisfactory reply to their candy extortion demands?

    5. Craig Calcaterra said...

      Grandma. Actually, two grandmas tonight.  They like to see the kids dress up so they come over, take pictures, and then hand out candy on our front porch. Win-win.

      And if there’s any trouble, my dad will be there too, and he has a conceal-carry permit.  Just try to TP my house. I don’t care if you’re 7. You’re goin’ down, dude.

    6. Kevin S. said...

      Craig, I may have mentioned this before, but…

      We know divorcing owners can wreak havoc on a team’s finances.  The Dodgers probably need another pitcher and have a surplus outfielder (since they seem to think Juan Pierre’s good enough to be an everyday player).  Derek Lowe and Manny both somewhat underperformed their contracts last year.  Thoughts on a potential swap there?

    7. Levi Stahl said...

      This Columbus tradition sounds suspiciously like a reaction to some hideous Halloween incident in the distant past . . . that no one talks about!!! Do old people turn away in silence when you ask them about it, Craig? Do they mutter “Such a shame,” when they see kids walking the streets on “Beggar’s Night”? Is there an unexplained giant, pulsing sinkhole at the intersection of Main and Church that everyone walks around all casual-like as if it weren’t even there?

      You’re living a ghost story, dude—time to Shaggy up and investigate it.

    8. Andy H said...

      I was also thinking about 1996, the last time the defending World Champions from the NL won game one of the WS in Yankee Stadium. 

      Like you, I was in law school then, though I remember 1995 better.  Our prof (and dean) was from Ohio and an Indians fan.  A couple of poor souls wore their Braves hats after the Braves won, and no one else had to worry about answering any questions in class that day.

    9. (Not That) Tom said...

      Craig, you know if you really want to make your son’s costume as authentic as possible, you’d hand him the travel mug full of liquor.

    10. APBA Guy said...

      We all expect pictures posted on Facebook tomorrow,, including these infamous travel mugs in your proud-parent hands.

    11. John_Michael said...

      My favorite Tim McCarver quote from Game 1:

      “Both the Phillies and the Yankees have 7 wins so far this post-season.”

    12. Craig Calcaterra said...

      Kevin S:  If the Dodgers trade Manny for Lowe I’ll pay the McCourt’s legal bills myself in gratitude.

      Levi: I’d prefer to Daphne-up.

    13. Craig Calcaterra said...

      That costume was totally of his then three year-old devising. He wanted to be a “motorcycle dude” but he insisted on the bandana looking like that.  All the adults called him Axl. None of the kids knew what to make of him.  He’s a weird kid.

    14. Greg Simons said...

      I recall reacting to one particularly stupid comment from Buck or McCarver last night toward the end of the game, but at that point I wasn’t paying close enough attention to care to remember the details.  And if that’s as bad as it got, I agree, Fox outdid itself.  And I actually like the triple-shot cameras focusing on the pitcher and hitter with the catcher in the middle flashing the signs.  Thankfully (shockingly?!?!), they consistently went back to the center field camera before the pitch was thrown.

    15. Kevin S. said...

      I seem to recall McCarver saying after one of Utley’s home runs that he’s a gamer, and that was the highest compliment you could give a player.  It irritated me almost as much as the home run itself did.

    16. Ron said...

      I’m watching on ESPN America.  We get Sutcliffe, and whoever his partner is. I didn’t pay attention.

      It ain’t great, but it ain’t McCarver/Buck.

      USA 0, rest of the world 1.

    17. Kevin S. said...

      Actually, I find Sutcliffe to be utterly atrocious.  I think the only reason he doesn’t draw the same rancor as Morgan, McCarver and Caray is he doesn’t do the spotlight games.

    18. Matt said...

      Craig,
      I just moved out of Columbus after 5 years there.  Never ever understood the Beggars’ Night thing.  The best explanation I ever got was that some Christian groups were against celebrating what started as a pagan holiday, so towns individually moved the candy-giving to other nights.  Not sure how true this is, but it is a really stupid tradition.

    19. YankeesfanLen said...

      In this part of Jersey, the night before T&T is called “Goosey Night”.  Have no idea where this comes from, it’s the equivalent of Mischief Night, nowhere near as expansive as Detroit’s, though.
      Two suggestions:
      Try Gin (Sapphire or Plymouth if you’re flush)if you like tonic mixers, that vodka thing is 90s, gin’s making a comeback.
      Upgrade from that point-and-shoot Canon, colors are okay but contrasting bright backgrounds get crazy washed-out.

    20. Jack Marshall said...

      You are right about Bryant, though there is a big difference, as I see it, between Ortiz’s and McGwire’s situations. Ortiz has denied using steroids—-ever—-and says his positive test must have come from some other sobstance. The Union essentially said that the positive test result was not necessarily at odds with his explanation. McGwire refused to state under oath that he had not used PEDs. There is no reasonable inference to be made from this other than McGwire HAD knowingly used PEDs.

    21. Dr Paisley said...

      my daughter is dressing up like a witch, my son is dressing up like a construction worker

      I am assuming this is some kind of bizarre Harry Potter/Village People mashup, but what are the rest of the characters?

    22. Kevin S. said...

      Well Jack, if we’re going to compare Ortiz and McGwire, let’s control the variables.  Until Ortiz has to testify under oath and denies it, I’m not willing to compare the two.  If you’ll recall, Mac also denied allegations until he had to put his hand on the Bible (or whatever they make you swear on these days).

    23. Jack Marshall said...

      Kevin S.: Point taken. Although for anyone of integrity, a public statement requires exactly the same level of honesty as a sworn statement. A lie’s a lie. And, by the way, if McGwire was at Ortiz’s point, I’d believe him too. That’s what I was saying: their circumstances are different, and the reasonable and fair assumptions about them are different.

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