Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Special Angry Guest Letter: Leaving New York


I’ve removed the greeting that usually begins these letters. Dear. I don't think you're worthy of it. I’ve also replaced the comma with a colon because it feels colder that way. And you deserve all the cold that comes to you. If it was up to me, you’d be exiled to Buffalo and put out on a street in the dead of winter wearing nothing but a Lin jersey.

Listen, Dolan, you’re going to get a lot of letters that start this way: “Now I’m a Brooklyn Nets fan.” Well, I didn’t start that way because I wanted to save it for the second paragraph. I’m from Brooklyn and I’ve always wanted a team--any team--here, so I'm hopping on board. The way I see it I’ve been loyal to the Knicks for too long. If you’re in a shitty relationship, you don’t stick around for more than a decade unless you're scared or dumb. All of my fond memories of the Knicks are from childhood, but my adult life as a basketball fan has been powered by disgust and disappointment (it would be much different if the team was merely bad). You’re not the only one to blame, but you’re at the top of the list. You’ve forced me to reconsider my identity, the way the Mets did when I was a kid and they traded Lenny Dykstra. A team can betray you, and that’s what you’ve done, Dolan. You’ve betrayed. You’ve bitten down hard on our hearts.

Some people will say I’m blowing this out of proportion. I’ve been home in Brooklyn for the past week and I’ve been reading the paper and listening to the radio--Francesa and Lupica and others are backing up this move, whether they like you or not. They’re saying Lin’s not a good fit for this team, that he worked in the D’Antoni system, that he’ll flop around in the Woodson system, that his weaknesses have been exposed and other teams will pounce on him this year, that he’s not capable of leading the Knicks to a championship. These people, as my grandfather would say, have rocks in their bean. Read Jay Caspian King’s “Dumb Move, Dolan” on Grantland today--That sums up why keeping Lin was the right choice. I won’t get into that here, except to say that keeping Lin was VERY CLEARLY THE RIGHT CHOICE, YOU DIRTY PIECE OF GARBAGE.

I’ve let my anger get the best of me, Dolan. This is what you do to people. I can’t drive today, that’s all I know. If I drive, I’ll smash into things like Jason Kidd. I’m finishing this now and I’m realizing it's really not much more than simple hate mail. But maybe hate mail is all you deserve. See, Dolan, my blood’s on fire. This is a different kind of let-down. You’ve made me lose sight of common sense things like courtesy and giving people the benefit of the doubt.   
In a couple of weeks, I’ll be driving back to Mississippi--where I’ve lived for the last four years--and I’ll be happy to go, in part because you’ve soured my trip home. Yesterday I saw a kid--he couldn’t have been more than seven or eight--wearing a Lin jersey and it broke my heart. That kid has had to learn too quickly about betrayal. I hope he wakes up hating you and hating the Knicks. I hope he switches teams, cheers the Rockets or the Nets. I sincerely hope that, Dolan. I hope he writes you a letter in crayon or some shit, includes a picture of himself in his expensive Lin jersey, and I hope you read it and then plop your head down on your desk and cry for hours because you’ve misunderstood the world.

Bill Boyle