Here We Are Now, Entertain Us!

Ingesting a fair amount of this Dodgers / Cubs NLCS, something became abundantly clear…….a lot of you baseball fans out there, are old crotchety mutherfuckers!  Let me clarify my point.  I saw a lot of “Strop should wear his hat straight”……”Baez shouldn’t do this or that”…….”Puig shouldn’t bat flip on a single”…..BLAH….BLAH…..BLAH!
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If you are reading this blog you are likely a fairly psychotic White Sox fan and potential a YUGE baseball fan at large.  You might also be a fan of other sports.  I know sports tend to be escapism to lots of people, but they are also “PERFORMANCE ART”…..that’s right, these terrifically skilled athletes are out there playing a game to win, but they are also out there to entertain us.  So when I hear someone say “Puig shouldn’t bat flip on a single”…..I think, why the hell not?  People will say, “He’s not playing the game the RIGHT WAY” as if there is a there is an Emily Post book on the “RIGHT WAY” to baseball.  GIMME A BREAK!!!  Now, I apologize for the language that is coming up, I am going to use the F Word, that’s right FUUUUUUUUNNNNNNNNNN!!!!!!  Puig should bat flip on a single, because its FUN!  Baez should do his swipe tag and point because its FUN!!!!  Now maybe its not fun to you if you are rooting for the opposing team, that’s fine, but if you are a fan at large and don’t enjoy this showmanship, this Performance Art, then I want you to sit down (possibly over a few dozen drinks and a visit to Bovada.com) and examine why the fuck not.  The NFL is practically built on this stuff (as much as Goodell tries to de-funify the league), the terrific athletic plays followed by the insane touchdown celebrations or sack dances.  I wanted to see Ernest Givins doing the electric slide!  Or see Deion Sanders high stepping in for a touchdown…I loved that shit.
Right now, there is half the crowd shaking their heads in vehement agreement and the other half is saying “This BeefLoaf guy doesn’t watch the game the RIGHT WAY!”…..for those naysayers in the crowd, the teenage BeefLoaf was once one of you.  No, no, not for the sports I loved, I always would rather see the Ickey Shuffle then some over-educated under employed adult telling me that “Barry Sanders handing the ball to the referee after a touchdown was the RIGHT WAY!”  No, none of that, I mean I was one of you, I was a naysayer……anyone remember or a fan of the WWE?  eLOheL!  I am not, nor was I ever really, but I used to say “Who would want to watch Pro Wrestling, that’s not a real sport?”  Well guess what, LOTS OF PEOPLE!!!  You know why?  It’s performance art AND it’s FUUUNNNNNNNN!!!  Shout out to the homeboy Slim Mick for straightening me out on the whole Pro Wrestling thing.  So YOU!  RIGHT NOW!  can get your head wrapped around this whole thing……I’ve got the perfect tonic for you……go back and watch the conclusion of the World Baseball Classic…..if you can’t enjoy the US Team celebrating with the Bald Eagle statue then there is no hope for you…..LITERALLY, NO……HOPE…..I suggest you stop watching sports and watch something a little more prim and proper like British Parliament.
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KThxBai
– BeefLoaf
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The Final Homestand….@Nakedbiker, Marlins Man, The M&M Guy and Moar

Editor’s Note – Yes, this has taken a long ass time to post.  We are sorry.  We strive to do better but sometimes, especially after a long season, we get back to life. Wives plan weekends.  We actually leave the neighborhood.  It’s crazy.  Enjoy our final week of games!
This was the final White Sox homestand of 2017, ergo, it would be the final homestand for the 108ers.  @mysoxsummer and @mrdelicious determined that it would be their duty to attend all 7 games of the final homestand to get that final flavor of the White Sox season.  Both of them really piled up the games this year, not in a James Dudaian manner, but a lot for the lay person that is a season ticket holder.
Game 1 – 9/22 – Royals
The final game that all the boys were together.  We did it right.  Like really right.  Baderbrau provided the beers that we crushed pre-game and that set the mood off right.  It was a fun night and a hell of a cap on the end of the season.  Slumpbuster and Biguns were early, and we talked tons of shit.  Slumpbuster came outta the gate strong, he showed up to the tailgate half in the bag from a day of golfing, brought a carton of cigs for the crew to share (only two people would even entertain having a cigarette) and was spraying fist bumps to all fields…..and this was BEFORE we got to the ballpark.  Once we were there and rounds of brews were flowing, Biguns commented that he was on pace to break the Guinness Book of World Records high for Fist Bumps in a 9 inning game.  While still on pace, he took off and disappeared for an inning and a half……..when he resurfaces, he has an entire Beggars Pizza in his mitts to share with the crew.  Always a generous gent that Slumpbuster.  Truth be told that slice for each one of the fellas prolly saved us as the booze rolled fast and furious and half the 108ers claim they don’t even remember the climax of the game (so to speak).  Plans to meet up in the offseason were made. It’s a sad night, but it always starts again come spring.
Sox won in spectacular fashion, a game ending double play.  Avi Garcia slips picking up a single to RF, then throws out Whit Merrifield at the plate.  Omar Narvaez then has the presence of mind to whip around and throw to the bases where the Sox cut down Lorenzo Cain for a double play and a White Sox winner.  Of course the loser Royals ask for a stupid replay, so we have to delay our gratification for 97 seconds.  That’s dumb.  But guess what, we got to celebrate TWICE!!!  We even took, quite possibly, the drunkest picture we have ever taken.  It was Hispanic Heritage night, so MSS donned his 100% Soxican shirt to fit in with the brothers.  Despite the lack of a good tan, he pulled it off.  It was like 107 out, so we were sans sombreros, maybe next year.  Friday night set the tone for the weekend…..
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Game 2 – 9/23 – Royals
If you don’t follow us on Twitter, what the fuck man?  We have great content from time to time and you, yes you, should be following us.  If you aren’t, just fucking do it.  So, as Chorizy was recording a sure to be top 10 album with his band Barren Plains, ‘Loaf and MSS were left with some extra tickets to the game. Including 2 patio party passes for the season ticket holder event.  So we decided, what the hell, let’s invite some randos from Twitter to the game and hope for the best.  So we held a contest, had 15 people enter, and we selected our Twitter follower, @misterfox.
Contact was made on Friday morning as MSS got a little too drunk at Baderbrau the night before, helping out on the Chicago Tonight shoot.  Helping out is code for pounding beers and eating that delish mac and cheese waffle. Saturday was confirmed and we were nervous like a whore in church.
What didn’t help was it was 100+ out that day and both ‘Loaf and MSS decided that black was the best color to wear.  We decided that pregaming before the pregame was excessive, so we walked to the park, sober as fuck, and waiting for our guests.  There are two ways this could end right?  Either really awesome or shitty as fuck with us (or them) ditching us after a few innings.  ‘Loaf is a sensitive guy, the second option would not have gone over well.  But guess what?
THEY FUCKING ROCKED.  Yep, they were awesome.  @misterfox and his lovely wife were cool as fuck.  They even didn’t give MSS that much shit for walking in and out of the line like 7 times to get extra soccer jerseys for the slack jaws that didn’t make it to the game.  While MSS was doing his thing, ‘Loaf entertained the twosome the only way he knows how, telling stories and drinking beer like a pro.
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MSS was “shook” upon entry learning that no food had been eaten, but he joined in the drinks and they were flowing.  Mrs. Fox kept getting beers for everyone, including herself, and that was simply amazing.  Mr. Fox was presented with a 108 OG shirt and 108 OG hat, he seemed rather thrilled with the swag.  We ate a shitload of chicken, drank a shitload of beer and headed to the seats.  #WallyMoney was up there, chillin’ and shit, and he swore he wasn’t drinking.  3 seconds later he swore he was only gonna have 1 Corona.  Then he told us how much he loved Corona as he drank multiples at a frantic pace.  Classic #WallyMoney.
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The game was almost over as soon as it started, at least it felt like it.  Lotta stories were shared and beers were drank.  We got surprise visits from alot of the Twitter elite which was pretty awesome when we had our dates there trying to be all impressive and shit.  But then, outta nowhere, the man, the myth, the 1983 ROY showed up the in the 108.  Yep @nakedbiker (Ron Kittle) himself sat down for an inning with the 108 crew.  If you have read our blog since Jan, you will know that MSS usually has breakfast with Ron and Harold Baines during SoxFest.  We are also good friends with his good friends @petehand and @msox12 which has been great to get to know all of them this year.  @msox12 LOVES the Sunday Soak, so much so she has even offered up her pool if we ever need it.  We know it sounds like a classic story from Penthouse Forum, but we think she is on the up and up.
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So Ron is sitting with us, telling stories that only Ron can tell (we’ll tell you in person, but not something that we need to share here), and our guests are impressed.  Mrs. Fox is still matching the boys beer for beer, which is just goddamn impressive.  Sox Side Pride bought many a beers for us too, which is always appreciated, but never necessary.  We asked Ron a bunch of questions, he told us about his new project ideas, just an all around awesome dude.  He left, promised to return next year, and that was that.  Thanks again Ron, we really appreciate your candor and willingness to sit between MSS and ‘Loaf for an inning.
By this time we are all “shook” and the drinks continue to flow freely. At least half of us have no idea a game is actually going on as @dirrty862 and her crew straight invade the 108.  We love this crew as they drink EVEN MORE THAN WE DO. It is straight insane.  By the 7th the Sox are cooked.  Also showing up shortly thereafter was friend of the 108 and HOST of the “South Side Sox Podcast” Josh Nelson (@sss_joshnelson), who stopped by with his lovely girlfriend to take in the last couple of innings with us.  He arrived by grabbing BeefLoaf by the collar and yelling at him about how bad David Holmberg sucks!!  Ha!  If you aren’t listening to the “South Side Sox Podcast” then FUCK YOU!!  We chatted primarily White Sox (mostly 2018) and puppies, as you might imagine.  It always thrills me when the people you listen to on the internet talk about your favorite team are just as nice and fun in person as you imagined them.
We socialize, we drink, we roll.  Upon our exit, we are walking and ‘Loaf says “Hey, isn’t that the Marlins Guy?”  A drunk MSS responds “Yep.  Let’s go get a fucking picture.” And we fucking did. What a nightcap.
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Thanks again to Mr. & Mrs. Fox for being down as fuck with the 108.  You guys are always welcome and we hope to see you at some off season events too.  It was a great time had by all.
Game 3 – 9/24 – Royals
As is tradition in the 108, Sunday is the quietest of the weekend days for us, even though it is #SundayFunday AND the #SundaySoak.  The NWI contingent are usually scarce on Sundays, particularly when our White Sox aren’t in contention.  Lately, even Chorizy has been pretty scarce on Sundays due to work and “artistic” commitments.  So the usual Sunday crew is basically MSS, ‘Loaf and the lovely Bonita Steakie……with usual drive by’s from Aloha Mr. Hand and @dirrty62 and her crew.  This particular Sunday we were #blest to have MSS’s old man Papa Loren join the crew for both the game and the #SundaySoak.
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The game went great, Lucas Giolito cruised in what would be his last start of the season and Avi Garcia and Kevan Smith homered.  The White Sox won the season series from the Royals which hasn’t happened in an unbearably long time.  All was well, including Bonita Steakie and BeefLoaf post game race down the ramp of Gate 2.  Of course BeefLoaf lost (as usual) and needed to hit his inhaler afterwards, but all was still good.
After the game….our signature segment, #SundaySoak (sponsored by @baderbrau)
Game 4 – 9/25 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Los Angeles California
Monday games are usually pretty “meh” on the game scale, but wtf, we only have 4 games left for the season AND we get to see Mike Trout.  Why not go to the ballpark, throw back a few brews and enjoy a game.  MySoxSummer and Papa Loren hit the ChiSox Bar early for some apps and then the BeefLoaf met up with them a tad later.  Inside the park, we went and hit up the White Sox social lounge for some Twitter prizes
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MySoxSummer, as he’s want to do, went for the #SoxSocial twitter machine and low and behold he scored a printed and signed picture of Bob Howry.  Bob Howry was last in a White Sox uniform in 2002 and last good in a White Sox uniform…..ehh…well, anyway, it was a very odd prize with a retail value of $0.00.
The game went great, despite Mike Trout crushing a homer off of Big Game James, Shields returned to his old form throwing 7 quality innings and getting help from the bullpen to hold it down.  Sox win 4-2 behind Shields and excellent bat stuffs from Nicky “Steaks” Delmonico.
Game 5 – 9/26 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Los Angeles California
WE. ARE. BACK.  We started off Tuesday night once again at the ChiSox Bar and Grill, except this time, we got jobbed on our free appetizer coupons.  Just another example of ChiSox Bar and Grill nickel and diming the patron, cutting off its nose to spite its face.  We are no business experts, but we thinks that you DO have to honor coupons regardless of how you might have changed your mind.  What is hilarious to us is that the day before, we had no issue using them with a waitress.  Hell, we used 2.  And ya know what, she got tipped like a mofo.  Our wing consumption went way down this year mostly due to not knowing if we would get served if we came in and how quickly they would shut down the kitchen.  It hurts your chances to get regular customers, but maybe that isn’t the goal.
It’s no worries, as there are new establishments that have popped up and are continuing to pop up around the ballpark that will make this place unnecessary.  Once in the ballpark, MSS and ‘Loaf headed back to the White Sox social lounge for more fun and prizes.  MSS was so damn geeked about his Bob Howry signed postcard that we just had to go back.  Upon getting a Tim Raines SLU (Starting Line Up) the Twitter machine was deemed a failure by MSS.  But it’s free, so thanks?  Our good buddy Justin showed up and crushed beers with us and he was very interested in the SLU, so it was gifted to him.
The game….what game?  Behind Volstad a 6 run 2nd kinda did the deed.  We will need some pitching next year and this game proved that.  So let’s get on that Rick, you pimp ass mofo you.
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Game 6 – 9/27 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Los Angeles California
$1 HOT DOGS!!! And the triumphant return of one Chorizy-E, who’s last appearance was on Friday night when the band was back together, of course he shows for $1 Lips and Assholes night!!
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We set a lofty goal of trying to eat 108 hot dogs.  Not just us, but everyone that follows us on Twitter, FB, ya know the socials, even the fine folks in 135 aka the OG Pride and Passion crew pledged their support in the cause.  Sadly, we didn’t even come close to this goal, but I don’t blame us.  Who do we blame?  THE MFIN’ WHITE SOX. They “ran out” of hot dogs in the 4th.  Seriously?  Magically they showed up for the final game, but the $1 kind ran out.  If you were there you know what was happening, lines, lines, lines.  #Wally$ and MSS sat in line for like 20 minutes just to get 7 dogs.  What a fucking rip.  You can’t offer them for a $1 then not make them available.   We had 0 vendors come to the 108 selling dogs.  0. ZERO.
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MSS watched as grills were half filled and one person was working it.  Ugh.
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Normally, the staff at these stands can be hit or miss.  Some folks are awesome as hell, but the hierarchy that exists between these folks is fucking insane.  Lotta supervisors, lotta folks assigned to tasks that don’t appear to be needed and doesn’t seem to help make anything faster. We don’t blame the workers, we blame the top.  You can tell which stands have good supervisors, which areas are run well.  MSS had a lady, sitting at a register, drinking a soda, just point to the next register.  No “Sorry, I am not open, you will have to go to the next register.”  Nope, just a point.  That really sets the mood.
The game was a good one, in fact, it went extras.  As the 9th inning commenced, the under dressed and appropriately intoxicated BeefLoaf and Chorizy-E proclaimed they were leaving and going to watch the rest of the game from their respective homes.  The rest of the group followed.  Chorizy and his wife got out ahead of the slower plodding other 108ers, but as MSS and ‘Loaf rolled up to 35th street, we saw the one and only M&M Guy, George Jacobs standing outside of Gate 4, just chatting with folks and taking pictures.  This is twice in the same homestand, but we just had to roll up and get a picture with him.  He couldn’t have been nicer, and for those wondering the M&M jacket smelled quite pleasant.
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Back to the game……since we are all friends we stay on the chat or on the text even AFTER we leave the ballpark. MySoxSummer pointed out that George Jacobs was back in his fucking seat for the start of the bottom of the 10th inning.  This guy is a boss at the highest level.  He’s the Mayor of Sox Park.  Anywho, back to the game, no sooner do we get a big chuckle about this, that Nicky “Steaks” Delmonico strikes again, bashing a 2 run walk-off DINGER.  MSS was pissed at the brothers (‘Loaf and Chorizy) for getting the group to leave before extras.  Oh well, I’m sure there will be other thrilling moments for future non-95 loss White Sox teams.
Game 7 THE FINALE – 9/28 Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim Los Angeles California
The FINALE, with MSS, ‘Loaf and Chorizy, along with numerous special guest fly bys.  If we miss any of you in this run down, it is simply because we were highly intoxicated and we are finishing this article up 3 weeks after the actual event.
We broke bread (ie, crushed Modelos, chatted about baseball and life and/or yelled loudly and triumphantly for the White Sox) with –
The Man, The Myth, The Legend Mike Turnipseed (and his buddy, his son too!), who’s claim to fame is being part of a renegade group of local surfers (SouthEnd Surf Crew – They made a movie – https://vimeo.com/222429426 )  on Lake Michigan……
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@chisox2727 who is a fantastic follow on twitter and a swell guy to sit and talk White Sox with (don’t make any NWI jokes tho’, he don’t take kindly to those)…….
@Simpossible who the 108ers have gotten to know over the 2nd half of the season, another great White Sox fan who thinks critically about the team……..
BeerBungHole and the lovely Mrs. BeerBungHole, long-time friends/family of the 108ers, had some great discussions with them on the finale and we even remember a few of them :)………..
PC Jonny, who is part of our normal crew, but refuses to attend more than 3 games a season when the BeefLoaf is in attendance…….
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Mr & Mrs. Fox, our contest winners from Saturday, great to see them, they were finally over being 108’d on Saturday night and were enjoying a great White Sox win with us……
@dirrty862 and her crew including – @cmmarysz – who are always bringing in the funnies to the 108.  Lotta support from these guys all year, maybe next year they will wear the 108 shirts.  Ha.
Last but not least, Aloha Mr. Hand who is a great friend to the 108ers and a great White Sox fan, his suggestions / ideas for 108 offseason stuff had us ROFL.
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The game,….oh yea, the game, we were treated to quite the comeback win….Rob Brantly smashed a 2 run shot and then Tim Anderson scored all the way from first base on a single to left field by Rymer Liriano.  It was a terrific piece of base running and one of many examples of how Anderson can be a special player.  Juan Minaya slammed the door shut and we all left happy.  A great cap to a very fun (if not terribly successful in the standings) season.
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After the game, the crew was still looking to have a cocktail or two and possibly watch the conclusion of  Bears / Packers.  We headed to Cork and Kerry, where service was a tad spotty to start, but we quickly got into our groove.  The Bears on the other hand, did not, they got thumped by the Packers in embarrassing fashion.  We didn’t give much of a fuck about the Bears as we were going out on a high note, concluding another excellent season of #108ing and having all of you join us for the ride.  Thanks!
– BeefLoaf & MySoxSummer

Competitive Advantage – WHITE SOX

Howdy friends, it’s your pal BeefLoaf, enjoying the MLB playoffs and thinking about our White Sox.  Today I want to talk about “Competitive Advantage“, for those curious, the definition of this term from Dictionary.com is as follows a condition or circumstance that puts a company in a favorable or superior business position.
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As I scan this here MLB playoffs or even think back about the good teams of the last decade or so, it got me wondering.  What will the White Sox competitive advantage be when they are back in contention?  Over the last several years, you have seen teams that make the playoffs multiple times take advantage of various things that made them successful.  Rays and Pirates of recent playoff vintage both took advantage of undervalued defensive players and methods of measuring defense, shifting on defense and utilizing their pitchers to deploy that defense.  Dodgers and Cubs took advantage of the fact that there is no luxury tax partaining to the front office and loaded theirs with several folks who would be GM’s spread across the league.  The Red Sox took advantage of the international player pool, even getting themselves in a wee bit of trouble along the way in doing so……etc, etc.
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Now the first answer that rolls off the tongue for most learned White Sox fans will be that Don Cooper and Herm Schneider are the White Sox competitive advantage, and maybe they were for the last excellent White Sox teams, the 2005-2008 group.  But truth be told, most teams are spending buckets of money on research into this stuff, in fact the Cubs right across town appear to have gotten as good as our guys at keeping their starting pitchers healthy with a mix of diet, mental health coaching and alternative workout routines (pilates, yoga, etc).  Even the Dodgers decided, fuck health!  We’ll just sign as many injury prone starting pitchers as we can, since they aren’t too expensive and we’ll play games with the 10 day DL so we can basically have Kershaw + an additional 7 man rotation where the rested/healthiest guys always pitch.  Nope, the White Sox are going to have to figure out a different competitive advantage and you can bet your ass someone will write a book about it well after it is done…..Here’s a few ideas, fresh from a soak in the hot tub…..
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Base Running
For those of you that just recently enjoyed the Vince Coleman era of base runner instruction, you are probably like “ROFLMFAO” about this potentially being an advantage.  I had a vision from the home season finale in which Tim Anderson scored from first base on a Rymer Liriano single for the deciding run and was reminded that Anderson was also pretty excellent stealing bases this year.  Upon further inspection, 3 of the White Sox young players happen to be plus base runners in 2017 (Anderson, Moncada and Avisail Garcia) with a fourth young player who might not figure into the future mix, Adam Engel being the best of the group.  Even the players they have been drafting / acquiring via trade seem to have enough athleticism to potentially fit in this group.  Even the pudgy Jake Burger (Chorizy-E’s guy) is supposedly a pretty good runner for a fat guy.  It is probably hard to make Base Running your Competitive Advantage, its like saying “the reason to go to this restaurant is the Lobster Bisque”…….nothing against Lobster Bisque, it has the potential to be great, but if the rest of the meal isn’t legit, then I’m not dragging my ass there.
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Contact
The Royals and Giants of recent vintage as well as the current Astros are utilizing this to their advantage, making more contact, ie striking out less than the rest.  I am on the fence if this is actually their mode, as even though they are drafting and acquiring players with lower strike out rates than their power profiles, the White Sox have two key players that strike out prodigiously (Moncada and Anderson).  It may just be a risk mitigation tactic to draft gobs of players that don’t strike out as much to offset these two (as well as some other risk minor league profiles), but the fact that it has worked very well over the last ~10 years or so does seem to lay some credence to it.
What Say You?  Got some thoughts on the White Sox competitive advantage?  Hit me up on the Twitter machine.
– BeefLoaf
 
 
 

The El Duque…How I remember it

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Hi friends, it’s your buddy BeefLoaf.  In the past few hours I have seen various fb posts, tweets, etc of one of the most exhilirating half innings in White Sox history.  Those of you in the know, simply call it the “El Duque inning”, but for those not in the know it was White Sox vs Red Sox, at Fenway, game 3 of the ALDS, bottom of the 6th inning, our White Sox clinging to a 1 run lead and the bases loaded with nobody out when Orlando Hernandez entered the game.  Hernandez was a starting pitcher during the season, but was clearly the 5th starter so his only role on the playoff roster would be coming outta the pen and who knows how much he’d actually get used considering how damn good that pen was during the season.
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I was a mere 27 year old when the El Duque inning occurred, and more accurately, I was closing the books on my first job out of college…………literally that day.  I mean, I had a box with my shit in it leaving my old job.  Unlike Chorizy-E, who started off his post college career working for a well known Chicago record label (ask him about it, he has some great stories) before finding his career….and also unlike MySoxSummer who spent a decade or so in Arizona and Cali groovin’, before coming back to Chicago to start up his current life…..I went straight into my trade out of college.  I went right from a lax senior year college schedule to Public Accounting (and studying for the CPA and all that bullshit).   Most of you don’t know anything about Public Accounting and most of you probably don’t care, but Public Accounting is a right of passage for young accountants.  Here’s the deal, the firm will beat the ever loving shit outta you, piling on hours (and in my case weight) and in return, you’ll get to put that and a variety of very helpful skills on your resume.  I bit, for 5 years……..Now, you have two choices, at some point, stay with it and hope to get on the partner track, which will eventually get you paid righteously OR go into industry and trade some hours for some of your life back.  I chose Industry.  So, October 7, 2005 was one of the happiest days of my life already when I was listening to the White Sox on the radio and packing up my shit to move on with my life.  Being who I am, I made a good faith effort to put in a full day, but goddamnit, my White Sox were in the playoffs and there is no reason not to get to a local saloon and catch what’s left of the game.  I reached out to Chorizy and sure enough they were going to get to a bar close to my office (which was in River North) so that I could meet them whenever I got out.  The bottom of the 6th inning was starting, so it was time to bolt.  I walked with all of my personal belongings to Mother Hubbards, there I found Chorizy-E, Ring Toss Mike and RhinoMan.  The game was at commercial, but they quickly filled me in as to the scenario that occurred while I walked down.  What I immediately found weird was that the TV we had in front of our table, appeared to be faster than the other TV’s by like a half second…..that ended up helping as the drama unfolded.  I don’t need to give you the play by play here, if you read this long, you know what happens.  When Johnny Damon fails to check his swing, we are the first in the packed bar to erupt!!

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What a great moment, great day, great year!!!
– BeefLoaf

Making of a Beer Vendor

Good day friends, it’s your buddy BeefLoaf, with a little inside baseball for all of you out there.  This is part instructional pamphlet for the aspiring beer vendors out there and a little bit of sharing with our follower base on the 108 experience.
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Listen up Beer Vendors!!!  and you fans, listen up too……

What makes a 108 preferred vendor???????

Customer Service
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This goes without saying, but it manifests itself in a variety of ways.  For the most part, the 108ers have 1-2 beer vendors on the text so that we can get a beverage on the quick.  The customer service goes beyond that, to coming around and making sure to take care of us for last call or to routing a different vendor (say margarita or cotton candy for the kids) our way.  Some of our favorites over time have even run to a vendor stand to grab a coke or something for the kids when they are out with us.  Our current favorite beer vendor even switched from Bud/Bud Light to Modelo/Corona, at least in tiny part because that was our preference.
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Our favorite vendors past, present and future can all chew the fat with the best of them, whether it be discussing the team we love, or heavy metal cover bands or even discussing life in general, our preferred vendors are able to do this with no problem.  They could easily fit in sitting with the 108ers for a ballgame, just so happens that they are selling product.  One of our past vendors would alert us to the exceptional ladies at the ballpark that night, which, even though 60% of the 108ers are married, it was still nice of him to do it.
Freebies
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Some of our vendors are better than others about doing this, but freebies for the crew are almost always a great deal for the vendor.  We tip well anyway, but when we get hit with a nice bit of free brews, we tend to tip even more.  I can remember a time when a vendor regularly would drop off a six pack at last call.  We chipped in for an extra big tip some other game when he wasn’t even our vendor, just tracked him down and hit him with a big toke.
Other Stuff
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Our favorite vendors have not only provided free booze on occassion, but they might also invite us to a party where we can partake in some boozaments or they might run the memorabilia stand at a different kind of event and be able to lock down some goodies for one of the 108ers before it gets sold out.  Or they might get a souvenir baseball for your daughter, just because.  In fact on Mark Buehrle day, an old vendor friend stopped by with a bag of ice for us to keep our beers cold in during the game as it was quite hot out that day.
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You just don’t know, but the best ones are the best ones for a reason.
You are probably sitting there and saying, “Hey BeefLoaf, that’s all well and good, but how the fuck do you end up getting in good with the vendors like that??”
If you are a fan and wish to get yourself some good vendors, here are a few tips……
Drink
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You will need to drink.  A LOT.  The 108ers don’t often hit it as hard as we used to, but there are plenty of games where we get into the 6 or 7 rounds of brews during a contest.  Usually it is more like 5, because our pre-game tends to leak into the ballgame, but there are still plenty of games where we’ll look down and we’ve had 6 beers and 2 margaritas in the 6 allotted innings of boozing (we usually arrive in the bottom of the 1st and even though we have written Rob Manfred to change this rule, they still only sell alcohol until the end of the 7th inning).
Don’t Be an Asshole
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As much as we laugh and grab ass and curse here in this blog and elsewhere, the 108ers are a pleasant and courteous bunch and I suggest you be the same.  Be friendly, chat up your vendor, but most of all, don’t be an asshole.
Tipping
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If it wasn’t clear, the 108ers are good tippers.  Despite how handsome, smart, well dressed and good smelling we are, it is truthfully our above average tipping that leads us down this path.  It makes sense too, if the vendors are going to give you excellent service, you should provide a little more compensation to garner said service.
So be a sport, tip your vendors and you can be living it up like a 108er
– BeefLoaf

The One Hitter…MLB Playoffs Wild Card Round

Hi friends, it’s the BeefLoaf and I bring you a quick one-hitter (don’t forget to exhale) about the MLB Playoffs!!!!  I read a fair amount about baseball and the majority of the folks I read don’t care much for the current playoff system, particularly the one game elimination wild card round.  Truth be told, I don’t either, but your pal BeefLoaf is rarely here for hollow complaints, I come with the solutions.  So, since MLB is clearly shifting more towards wanting “Playoff Excitement” whatever that means, and they aren’t going to reduce the amount of playoffs teams.  Here is my solution…….
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Currently we have 3 divisions in each league, which render a division winner each and then we have the 2 wild cards, which play the coin flip game to get into the divisional round.  Instead, I propose adding a 3rd wild card to each league (never mind that the AL one would be below .500 this season, this solution isn’t fuggin’ perfect) and instead of having a 1 game playoff, we have a round robin….DOUBLE ELIMINATION……. for the 3 wild card teams.  That isn’t the only catch though.  I seem to remember people “noting” that the advantage of winning the division wasn’t that great these days.  Well this round robin has to be played in its entirety in 3 days.  Yes, we’ll have double headers.  The top wild card in each league will host this extravaganza.  Imagine the bonanza of baseball you’d get for those 3 days, with games coming out of your ears from both leagues until all but 1 wild card team from each league advances.  It would also provide a larger edge in the divisional round for the top games winner in each league as their opponent would have to use their best pitchers to survive the wild card round.  It would be like Gladiator (not the Cuba Gooding Jr. one) to survive.  Jim Valvano’s old NC State team would thrive in a spot like this.  So will other triumphant teams and it will create a whole new layer to the playoffs that would be fun and exciting, while restoring some order to the old way (the old heads like the best teams to be most well represented).
You think I’m nuts?  What say you?
– BeefLoaf

The One Hitter – $1 Hot Dog Day / Story Time With MSS

Last night, after drinking several brewskis, I decided that we’d (all of us, even you!) would try to eat 108 total hot dogs tonight during the Sox game. It’s the last $1 Hot Dog night of the season, so we need to do something special. While a 108 beers would be easy for just our crew, 108 hot dogs between 5 guys would be rather rough.  That is why we opened it to our friends, fans, family, all y’all.  So if you are at the game tonight or at home and you down a hot dog or several tweet us at @fromthe108 with your total and use the hashtag #108dogsin108.  Should be a fun night! Come by and say hi!  Short on cash?  We’ll even buy you a hot dog if you need it that badly.

A few hints for tonight –

1 – Stop eating food at 12:30 pm.  Yep, start fasting to have that extra space to fill with low priced encased meat.

2- Drink a green smoothie to clean out your innards so you won’t get full after 5 or 6 hot dogs.

3 – Don’t be a pussy.  At some point you will think you can’t eat anymore, but truth is you CAN.  You gotta get past that mental block and eat a hot dog.  Simple as that.

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Now for story time! 

When I was a youngster, my mom made very heathy food in healthy portions for our family of four.  Which worked great to keep me under 200lbs during my high school years. But as a starving teenager, I would sneak out and eat a dinner before dinner, just so I would be full after dinner.  Which I am sure has caused me to gain weight later in life.

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Upon graduation from high school, I went to the great school of Northern Illinois University.  Lived in the fine establishment of Stevenson Towers North, 10th Floor, D Tower.  This was in 1995 before STN became the lovely dorm it is today, we didn’t even have food service on the weekends.  But there was a Friday night that sticks out and we happened to be served foot long hot dogs.

Now, given no limit to how much I could eat (we had a flat rate that we paid for meals back then) I used to eat a bunch.  I was there 3 times a day just to get my money’s worth.  My freshman year I am sure I gained 20 to 30 lbs and people told me that I looked good! I remember cresting the 200lb mark and feeling awesome about myself.  Years later when I crested the 300lb mark I was not as happy and no one was telling me how good I looked.  But I digress.

So this Friday night, the dorm was a buzz.  We all went down to eat dinner and get ready for what would happen. I know for a fact that I ate 2 feet of hot dog that night.  Getting back to our floor, I am not sure how this happened, but the party started about 8pm.  I was hanging with some buds maybe smoking something that could have been illegal, when my roommate came down to tell me that a guy on our floor had some hard booze that tasted just like mouthwash.  That turned out to be Rumplemintz. He was also flush with a bottle of Goldschlager which we always debated that the gold was real or not.  I am guessing it was not.  So we did some shots.

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Are blacklight’s still a thing?  Cause they were back then!  This low key floor party turned into a full on rager including highlighter tattoos and laundry detergent in the hair.  It was fantastic.  Drinks were flowing, our beer of choice back then was Old Milwaukee, and we were full on getting drunk, enjoying one another’s company. Pretty sure we did several “flaming” shots of Goldschlager and listened to a ton of Beastie Boys.  Then it started….

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I think it started with a girl on our floor that was running down the hall and puked in her hands and then threw it on the wall while running back to her room.  Then a guy was full on puking in the sink in the men’s bathroom.  Back then no one had the tolerance that you earn by these types of nights.  Both Rumplemintz and Goldschlager go down really smooth but will mess you up.  So after multiple shots of either, in a short period of time, you gonna get wrecked.  And wrecked we got.

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I don’t really remember the next part of the story but I have been told several times this is how it went down.  When the shots hit me, I ran to the bathroom to vacate the contents in my stomach. I hit a stall, missed the toilet and puked on the floor and directly on my future roommate’s hand which he responded with an “Ahhhh!” cause he was also puking.  And the last thing you need a a guy throwing up hot dogs on you when you are throwing up hot dogs yourself.

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After I threw up everything that was inside me,  my lovely roommate and friends carried me into my room and threw me on the bed.  That was it.  I was done, passed out cold, about 10pm, which seemed to be the trend for all of us.  I remember waking up, smelling Rumplemintz on my pillow and knowing that brushing my teeth from there on out was gonna be task.  I was told later what I was mess I was and how much I owe these guys for taking care of me and for cleaning up my puke.  Which was mostly just hot dog chunks.

So if you take only two things from this story be it this –

1 – Don’t mix 100+ proof booze with hot dogs in a short time.

(and my favorite)

2- Be thankful (cause I am) no one had smart phones back then.

Help us out tonight and tweet at us when you eat a hot dog! Every dog counts!

 

-MSS

The 5 – The Gates of Entry

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As a reminder to ourselves that our duty as “Voices of the Fan” for our beloved White Sox is to talk ballpark, baseball, bullshit, etc.  I’ll review, the 5, the Gates of Entry to the ballpark.

 

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5. Gate 4 – As MySoxSummer would say, this is where the “fancy people” enter the ballpark.  I’ve personally only entered through this gate once and they looked at me like a bailiff eye-ball fucking a parolee. It’s not a race thing, Chorizy-E and I just look like we might be no good. Despite the fact that we have comfortable white collar jobs, you’d never know that by sitting with us at a game.  This gate is also right out in the front of the ball park at the corner of 35th and Shields, so you have tons of people meandering around, so navigating this gate is actually much tougher than it would seem.  Most of the meanderers look like they could use a shower, or at least some Axe body spray and that’s just the ladies.  Regardless, since we aren’t really ever allowed into this gate, it rates last.  I suppose if the White Sox ever extended the Olive Basket and invited me to some games where this was the best gate for me to use, it might move up the rankings.  You might even see a little “BeefLoaf Was Here” carved into faux stone wall right there near the entrance.  But alas, no such gesture has been made, so it will sit comfortably here at numero (that’s “number” for you non-romance language speakers) five.

 

 

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4. Gate 1 – This is actually a good gate, but it’s rarely ever open to the ordinary patron.  I believe they allow the patio party folks into the ballpark via this entrance.    This gate actually most reminds me of going to jury duty, because each courthouse has a gate that sort of looks like this.  We 108’ers occassionally enter this way on weekends when there is an overflow crowd, it’s actually a very non-descript entrance, but the cement stairs lead you right up into the concourse in right center field, which is hella close to the 108 and is actually very convenient for us.  If this gate were open all the time, it would be our go to, it is pretty well concealed.  One issue with this gate is they only have 2 lines, so if you get a MySoxSummer or a WallyMoney$$$ ahead of you in line it could be awhile before they search through their massive sacks of goodies and actually get to you and allow you into the ballpark to enjoy an ice cold Modelo.

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3. Gate 2 – The 108’ers as a group have probably entered through Gate 2 more than any other gate, due to the old Slumpbuster / NiceShotNurse parking lot tailgates of yesteryear.  Back in those days we’d have our late entry, but we’d just stroll directly into the park via Gate 2, because everyone would be in the ballpark by then.  In recent years Gate 2 has become the most cocked up gate there is.  As the level of White Sox operations staff has decreased in its efficiency, Gate 2 has been the worse recepient.  They must put the folks at this Gate that are the most junior or possibly just the ones that give the least of a fuck.  Regardless, Gate 2 should have lots of promise as an entry gate, but it doesn’t.  You’d think that the Gate that spits the 108’ers out RIGHT.  AT.  OUR.  SEATS.  would rate higher, but it just doesn’t.  It’s still the “Nuts” (sorry, this is poker parlance for “the Best” aka an “unbeatable hand”) as a gate to leave the ballpark for the 108’ers as the folks manning the exits always have a smile and say nice things and even ignore our obvious and reckless levels of intoxication.  In fact on Sundays, you can see yours truly, the BeefLoaf and the lovely Bonita Steakie “racing” down the ramp to the Gate 2 exit, where the ‘Loaf summarily loses and needs to hit his inhaler before strolling back to Casa de BeefLoaf to prepare for the #SundaySoak.

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2. Gate 5 – This gate is solid, the folks here even helped Chorizy-E and BeefLoaf locate XL throwback jerseys for one of the more iconic 108 photos.  C0xhOnmUcAAm3sAThere are also a lot of lines to get in through gate 5 so you can usually move fairly expeditiously.  I won’t get into some of the “tricks” that some folks are able to pull at Gate 5 because of the high level of lines / entrances.  We’ll save that for a later post by folks that actually do those sorts of things.  This is also a gate where you might run into a slightly intoxicated (read HIGHLY INTOXICATED) @cmmarysz or @dirrty862 as you enter the ballpark and chat for a bit on your way in, either about White Sox stuff or not.  This entrances does offer that level of serendipity as you have lots of folks who were recently tailgating jumping in line and possibly realizing they forgot their tickets back in the car.  This gate also has the option to use the escalator or ramp (the 108’ers primarily escalate).  Also, if you use this as an exit gate, you can most definitely hit ChiSox Bar and Grill (although the grill part will be closed 8 seconds into your stay because half priced appetizers are a good advertising tool, but not necessarily something the proprietar wants to dish out in vast numbers).  The downside of this gate is that it is a LONG fuggin’ walk inside the park to get to the 108.  No offense against the reader here, as most of the folks that read our posts are courteous fans who get through the concourse quickly or who get in line expeditiously, but navigating the concourse between where Gate 5 spits us out and the 108 seems to take FOREVER.  Even Chorizy-E (Costanza) who effortlessly weaves in and out of concourse traffic can’t stand entering through this gate on a crowded day because of this issue.  There will be a future post on concourse ettiquette, it has to happen, as most people are so fucking oblivious to other humans that it creates chaos, but for now, let’s just say that people need to STAY WOKE in the concourse.

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1. Gate 3 – The winner and still champion (despite a hotly contested final scorecard and Teddy Atlas going berserk post fight) is Gate 3.  Gate 3 has 2 full entrances AND several lines.  It also has a set of lines that “look like” they are going somewhere special, but really don’t, so if you have a neck tattoo, or if you are a pregnant lady tryna chug down that last few swallows of Corona before hitting the gate, don’t fret, Gate 3 is for you also.  Another perk of Gate 3 is that depending on the flow of where people are parking, the southern most side of Gate 3 might be completely fucking empty, while the northern side has a substantial line. It is weird, but does often happen.  This is most likely to occur on a non-Sunday, or some reason, on Sunday’s the lines are fucked up on both sides.  This entrance also has both an escalator and a ramp, so you can choose your mode of transportation up to your destinated level.  The staff at this gate is also the best, they usher you to the shortest line and they get you through the fucking line fast.  I assume that despite being on the West side of the ballpark that this might be the most patroned gate, as the staff here seems to do the best job.  One thing to note, if you are a giveaway hound like our very own MySoxSummer, this might NOT be the best gate for you.  This gate is highly traveled and although you can get in quick, this gate usually is out of giveaways (ie, Chorizy-E and I basically never get to a game early, unless a Yoan Moncada or something is making their debut and we’ve never gotten a giveaway late at this gate, kapish!).  This gate also has the happy medium of being close to the 108’ers seats but minimizing the outside vs. inside walking time.  I should stuff the suggestion box and ask the White Sox to operate all the gates as smoothly as Gate 3, but truth be told, they won’t listen, so hopefully you have listened to the BeefLoaf, so you can get into the ballpark most expeditiously…..

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In closing, choose the Gate that serves your needs the best.  If you are looking to randomly see some old (read intoxicated) friends, I suggest Gate 5.  If you are trying to get into the ballpark with the least hassle, try a Gate 3.  If you are in no rush and want to walk the ramps, old school style, take a Gate 2.

I’d love to hear your feedback on Gate entry, tweet at me at @fromthe108!

– BeefLoaf

RIP John Slade

WARNING: This is not a baseball post

Earlier this week, we lost one of the great heroes of my childhood.  The great John Slade.

I remember back in the late 80s when Slade came out of retirement to take down Mr Big.  All of us had been hit by the plague that was Mr Big’s crew.  Nearly everyone I knew had a friend or relative that had succumbed to the temptations of gold or even that electro-plated bull shit that would turn your neck all green.  And some had unfortunately OG’d.  For a short time, John Slade freed us from all of that.

Unfortunately, it was short lived.  Even with Calinga launching a new People’s Revolutionary Army, crime continued to be an issue.  But John Slade never gave up the fight.  In fact, he was leaving the 29th annual Youth Gang Competition when he was gunned down.  While there are a number of suspects: Trump, Hillary, OJ, the most likely is Mr Big’s Nephew who was in town from KC when the shooting occurred.

With the previous deaths of Kung-Fu Joe and Hammer, he is survived by only a few of his crew members Jack Spade and Slammer.  His wife Bell Slade and her big round brown…well, I digress.  Nevertheless she was a good woman.

Bell, Jack, and Slammer will be at his memorial service this Friday.  The eulogy will be done by Fly Guy.  Drinks will be supplied (Whiskey Doubles and Pepsi Doubles).

-Chorizy-E

The One Hitter – Why No XXL?

Last weekend I brought out all my extra White Sox giveaways to sell at our annual block sale.  Sometimes I get extras on purpose, sometimes the fellas just give me what they get.  In any case, as a big guy, I can’t fit into the shirts or the hats all that well.  So those are usually given away to family or I sell them to get ticket money.  But there was a tired refrain this past weekend, “Hey, you got any 2XL?”

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I get it, most people fit into the M or XL, seems like the logical choice to giveaway to the fanbase.  But the XL is a big Large most of the time, so even the guys who can squeeze into an XL (looking at you BeefLoaf) get screwed most of the time.  In previous years they had offered a 2XL in the K Zone and in the speciality shirts, but this year they nixed that too.  So what gives White Sox?  Hate the fat guys?  The BBW ladies?  For shame.

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It doesn’t stop at shirts either, it even happens with the hats.  I have a huge head, I know, but these hats are made for small kids!  Screw that.  I’d love a free hat now and then, I can’t even fit my massive dome in the winter hat! What the hell!  Hate the fat guys and the big heads, that’s messed up White Sox.

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Even sat behind home or in almost every section other that the outfield?  Ever notice that the seats are MUCH SMALLER in the good areas?  Yep, trying to keep the fat guys off camera.  I get it White Sox, you have no problem taking advantage of the fat folk (see 3lbs Ice Cream Helmets, 16″ Mac and Cheese Brisket sandwiches, Helmet Nachos, and the $1 dogs for fatties on a budget (like myself)) but they can’t give us a shirt? Or an extra 3″ in our seat? What gives?

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Now they will sell you a big hat or a big shirt, and with the shirt at a markup from the “regular” sizes, but be ready to pay up.  And that’s another thing, wanna know what the price difference between a size 7 and a size 8 fitted hat?  $0.  And that is good materials, not some cotton bullshit.  So why you gotta make a 2XL $5 to $10 more?  Just hate the fat guys, I get it.

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Side Note – The 108 sells all our shirts at the same price.  We don’t discriminate against our fellow 2XL lovers. Same with the all inclusive trucker cap that easily fits HUGE DOMES.  Wanna support the cause? Head over to our website and buy what we have left!  We have a great shirt that should be out before C-mas or will be a SoxFest exclusive, have’t decided.  We gave away tons of shirts last year, look for something even better this year! 

I propose that they give away the different sizes at different gates.  Gate 2 should be for 2XL’s, mostly cause it is further away and the fatties could use a walk.  Just sayin’. I can give a fuck about the L and S wearing crowd as the XL and M seem to have it covered, but I get asked about 2XL more than any other size.

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So White Sox, how about you stop hating on the big folk that love your baseball team and hook us up with something besides insanely high calorie snacks?  Ya know what I am saying? Right now the seat thing isn’t that big of deal as no one shows up, but when we get good in the next few years, us big guys are fucked.  If we stop going, watch the food and drink sales numbers take a huge dive.  And no one wants that right Jerry? Right.

-MSS

You have a couple hours still left  to enter our #108freesaturday contest!  Get on the Twitter machine and tweet at us with that hashtag.  We got two free tickets for two fans to eat free food and drink free drinks (pregame Patio Party) for the game on Saturday. Even have free parking for you!  Only rule is that you have to be able to make it on Saturday, this Saturday. It’s all free and will be a great night!  The giveaway is a White Sox soccer jersey! 

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