A new season has started, bringing with it a new batch of terrible commercials on SNY. Jimmy and I have talked, and soon we will probably dedicate a post to a bunch of them. But even though there have been just three games, there is one in particular that I feel compelled to write about already.
I don’t smoke. I never have, not once. I’m not judging anyone else, it’s legal and if someone wants to smoke, that is their business. And so nothing about smoking scares or fazes me. I am, though, like a lot of people, phobic about going to the doctor. Of course it is not rational, the doctor is only the messenger, but denial is a real thing. A real dumb thing, I know, but still real. And I have talked about this with enough people over the age of 40 to know I am not the only person who has this phobia.
So now this year, the anti-smoking animals, bored with their usual campaign of showing us fun graphic images of human suffering in between innings, have a new advertisement. Just in case you haven’t seen it, there is a guy, who frankly looks a little like me, sitting in a doctor’s office. He is sitting by himself on the dopey paper on the stupid table, wearing the emasculating hospital gown. And he has that look of irrational dread on his face, because he is terrified the doctor might be bringing bad news.
Only it’s not irrational. Because the door opens and the doctor says,
“Congratulations you have cancer.”
“Great news, you have heart disease.”
“Diabetes, you lucky devil!”
Or something like all that. I think the door opens four freaking times. Now I have a message for these anti-smoking terrorists. You don’t have to smoke to get these illnesses. And so the real message of these commercials is – Don’t go to the Doctor! Bad, bad, things can happen. A lot of people, me included, do not need that message. It is the opposite of a health-based advertisement. And the smokers don’t care. Does anyone really think that people who smoke do it because they don’t know it’s bad for them?
Anyway, what does this have to do with the Mets, right? Well, yesterday I’m watching the game and Zack Wheeler is running out of gas. Everybody can see it. This means there is no choice; it is time for the Mets bullpen to swing into action. And I thought about the people at the game, sitting in their chairs, all 500 of them, with that look of dread that the guy has in the commercial. Only it’s completely rational. Because they look out at the door, the bullpen door, and it opens and the public address announcer says,
“Now pitching Scott Rice.”
“Now pitching Carlos Torres.”
“Now pitching Gonzalez German.”
And so on. No fan should be subjected to that. It’s inhumane, it’s horrible. Three games in, my first solid takeaway.
This bullpen should come with a Surgeon General’s warning.