6.23.2005

Fever of Baseball: Do Not Give Up the Hope, Carlitos!



First of all time, lett me start by saying primarily how proud I am to win the Premio Deportes, Venezuela's #1 top award for sportes writing! Here I am at the awards banquet, although I am not looking so good after recently having been stunged by a jellyfish. My face: tan huge! My many of thanks to the other writers and journalistas of Venezuela, all of whom I am humbled to be honored with this distinction.

Secondly, this is an open letter to my nephew, Carlos Zambrano. Oooh, yesterday was not so good-looking for little Carlitos! He was notoriously being shelled by the Cervezistos del Milwaukee, eight runs in one inning, ay yi yi! Not since I hit him so hard in the guts for grabbing me behind the showers at Punto Abajo has Carlitos been knocked so hard for a eloop!

I grew up in Caracas, so we did not get to see Carlitos's's family so much unless they traveled to meet us from Puerto Cabello, which we would not go in many million of years, to unless to be paid cash money dollars. But we are a very close and large and warm-hearted and loving and passionate and kissing and hugging and grasping family, so I saw mi nephew pequeno enough to know that his main problem is the getting upset and emotional in times of crisis. And I would say that getting eknocked out the ebox by los Cervezistos, who have less offense than John Bolton by his self, qualify as a crisis. Would you not?

So here is my message to Carlitos: be brave and courageous, little one! Of course, you are not so little now, at 1.8 metres tall and more than 102 kilograms. (Que gordito! Jajaja, just eplaying.) You have been force to carry the loading for your team, los Ojitos de Chicago, with all their "best" pitchers either getting hurt or sucking, and it is lots of stress. And I know that stress is a very stressful thing. Especially for you, Carlitos, who so often would get upset at us teasing you about your little fat cheeks! (Both sets, jajaja again!)

You had a very bad temper when we were ninos, so bad that when I knocked your hanging curveball over the fence at that family reunion you got so mad and red and cried like a smacked-up puta. And you had 19 anos at that time! I am sorry that I was so good at that reunion, I know you were trying to put the emack on our fourth cousin, that little skinny one with the ponytails and the culo like a piece of flat bread. It did not go so well for you that day, thanks to my mighty muscles and keen eyes.

But perhaps you should think about that time now when you are in your time of troubles. Remember how we finally made you tranquil by offering you some nice arepas and some cool sodapop? And so you decided to come down off the tall and dangerous pier that had been damned by the government inspectors? And you handed Uncle Ozzie the shotgun so that no one would be hurt or perhaps ekilled? Yes. That was one of our best reunions ever, as there was a minimum of bloodshed, and I ended up making out with Rafi Betancourt in the horse stables. (Is he related to us? If so, how? I cannot remember all these things!)

So check your mailbox, I has sent you 20 arepas and a case of cool sodapop, and some tapes with music from good new singing sensations like Dia Nueva and Baja Del Mesa and Ookie "El Cardinal" and Los Millonarios Jóvenes del Aceite. This will cheer you up, you will be back on the horse that bit you in no tiempo at all. We want to see those dimples in your round cheeks, Carlitos! Because otherwise you will shame our family very badly and we will shun you with the shroud.

That is concludes my open letter to my nephew. Until next time, gringitos, stay frosty!

Ana Maria Callejeo Guillen is the top baseball writer for El Universal. She also stars in a new reality show on Venezuela's Channel Uno this fall called "¡Sea ana Maria por un día... si usted se atreve!" ("Be Ana Maria For a Day...If You Dare!")

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