Hi, kids. I’m back after a lengthy hiatus. But I am feeling pretty good as it appears the magic might be back. My last interview subject, Daniel Bard, found his way to the bigs shortly after our little chat. I’m real proud of him. He’s my special boy.
Now, a new subject. I am once again targeting teammates. And this guy is a genuinely good dude. Happily married. Father of two beautiful kids. He is the person who coordinates with the pastor for chapel on Sundays in our clubhouse. Or so I hear. And also the Oklahoma Redhawks’ most effective relief pitcher thus far. Mr. Brian Gordon.
BV: Okay, Brian Gordon. The thing that baffles me the most in this world is the life of a married man. What is the compromise when you and the misses are sitting on the couch, and there are two separate shows that the two of you want to watch? How does that work?
BG: I once heard someone say… It’s a quote from a movie. “Happy wife, happy life.”
BV: Of course, The Heartbreak Kid. But please elaborate.
BG: Being that I get to play at the yard all day, I feel like she deserves to watch what she wants. She’s a hard working mom with our two kids. And a single mom half the time. So she gets to watch what she wants. And gets a foot rub.
BV: So, you’re not sick of Desperate Housewives yet?
BG: At one point, yes, I was. But as ballplayers, we have that schedule we have. It interrupts. So, it’s been a while since we’ve seen Desperate Housewives. But I should be able to make a tiramisu. What is that? A cake? Because we are stuck watching The Food Channel a bunch.
BV: Okay, so if not Desperate Housewives, The Food Channel, whatever. What TV shows have you had to sacrifice?
BG: I think the only shows that have been sacrificed are sports-talk shows on ESPN. Lucky for me, she can sit and watch a ball game if it’s on.
BV: Okay. You were a hitter up until 2007. Have to ask. Hitting a nasty slider down and away, or throwing a 2-0 off-speed pitch for a strike. What’s tougher?
BG: By far, hitting a nasty slider down and away. I could start off by saying that I’m pitching now. So that just sums up my ability to hit a down and away slider. After ten years, I’m now a pitcher.
BV: One more baseball question. Last one, guaranteed. Brian Gordon, the hitter, versus Brian Gordon, the pitcher. What happens?
BG: I don’t throw the hitter a fastball because that’s all I would look for. All I do is flip up curveballs.
BV: What does Brian Gordon, the hitter, do with those curveballs?
BG: Swings at two, maybe three of them.
BV: And the outcome of the swings?
BG: Hard and violent. I will get my money’s worth.
BV: But do you connect?
BG: I don’t think I connect. My curveball is 68 miles per hour. I don’t think I could stay back as a hitter. There are many that can. But I don’t think I could. I’m too geeked up to hit. It doesn’t make for a good off-speed hitter.
BV: Fair enough. Personally, I like to think I light myself up. I’m getting off track. Okay. You’re a couple years older than me. I’ve got my ten year high school reunion coming up in October. Did you go to yours?
BG: I did not go to mine.
BV: Why not?
BG: I still hang around most of my friends from then. And it was during baseball season. Maybe the big 2-0.
BV: I’m sorry for your loss. I’m going to party like it’s 1999.
BV: Because that was my senior year. Speaking of getting older. You have a son and a daughter. Focusing mainly on your son, and I talked to you about this earlier. When do you plan on tying your son’s right arm behind his back?
BG: (small laugh) It’s probably something I should do. But, uh, being that his mom and dad are just average size people, I’m going to let him decide. If baseball is his passion, I’d love to teach him. But we’ll see. His mom’s left-handed. I think.
BV: You think? How long have you been married?
BG: We’ve been married five years. Hold on. Let me think. Don’t put that in.
(It’s fair to tell you at this point that my digital voice recorder crapped out on me, and I had to write all this and talk at the same time. Just trying to give you the sense of desperation Brian was feeling at this point as my hand moved franticly about the page.)
BG: (laughing) And I think I’ve seen her throw a ball five times. And she says, “I think I used to be left-handed.” (more laughing) You’re going to get my (hoofed mammal of the genus Equus, or donkey) kicked.
(And now a moment of reflection as I pat myself on the back for getting Brian to say a word which needed censoring.)
BV: Last question. We talk movies in the bullpen. We’re both kids of the 80’s. What’s your favorite 80’s movie and favorite 80’s song?
BG: Hmmm. Uh, I think 80’s movie… Gosh, this is so hard because there are so many. (long pause, as in a good 20 seconds) I was a huge fan of Gleaming the Cube with Christian Slater. But at the same time… Weird Science. Might be the top two for me.
BV: And the song?
BG: Favorite 80’s song… (20 more seconds of suspense). Again, so many. What’s your favorite?
BV: Song or movie?
BG: Favorite song. Because I need help.
BV: Definitely… Woo. This is tough.
BG: The interview has shifted.
BV: Okay. Bananarama, “Cruel Summer” off The Karate Kid soundtrack. Kinda girly, but I like it.
BG: But not your favorite?
BV: Definitely my favorite because it makes me think of Elizabeth Shue in her prime. And she was hot.
BG: Ooh. Commando, my favorite action movie.
BV: Okay. But which song? We talk about this all the time in the bullpen.
BG: I know. But there’s not just one. There’s so many I enjoy. They just put me in a jolly mood, all of them.
BV: Okay. It’s late. I’m feeling woozy. So your constant talking and my lack of a voice recorder is going to make all of this impossible to read because my handwriting is terrible right now. SONG. NOW.
BG: (laughs) Oh, man. I guess, uh, … What was it? Bon Jovi, “Wanted Dead or Alive” maybe.
BV: Fantastic. Excellent choice. You got me hot just thinking about it.
BV: Thank you, Brian. And I only hope I’m as sexy as you when I decide to ruin my life with marriage.
BG: (laughs) No comment.
Brian is a fantastic sport, a good husband and father, a very good pitcher, and one hell of a model American. He made his major league debut last year with the Rangers. And I’m thinking he will be making his encore any day now.
Okay, I gotta go. Get Smart is on HBO. Anne Hathaway. Yeah, buddy.