6.03.2005

Some Thoughts on My Mind About BATMAN!!!



As long as I can remember I've been a bit of a "Bat-head." (That's what us Batman fans call ourselves.) Growing up in upstate New York, I used to read the comic books all the time, and couldn't wait for the TV show each week. I even once made a utility belt using one of my mom's garter belts. I had a little Batman mask I made out of a bonnet and I would prance around the house wearing my utility belt, terrorizing the living heck out of my dog Joker, who I would outfit in some of my old foundation and lipstick. Err... my MOM's old foundation and lipstick. Here's a picture of me in one of my many costumes:

karlbatman

My mom would tell my dad that the Batman obsession was a phase so he wouldn't send me off to military school. (Thanks mom! You're the best!) But it wasn't. When I got my first car I put fins on the back and even tried (unsuccessfully) to put a bubble dome on it, a la the Batmobile during the 1955 stretch of comics (Best! Year! Ever!). Just in case people didn't get it, I even had a vanity license plate before anyone had heard of such a thing. It read, "RAVMBIL," meaning Ravmobile. But my best friend's name was Bill so people thought it meant Rav and Bill and so that didn't work either. I learned pretty quickly that if my dream to become Robin's sidekick were to ever come true, I would have to lead a double life, just like Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson. Obviously that was a little silly. When I found out in college that Gotham City didn't exist I sure was red faced!

Anyway, the only reason I finally admit to all of this is that yesterday ESPN got a sneak peak at Batman Begins, the latest installment in the Batman series, and I couldn't have been more excited. I decided to spice things up a little bit and I wore my newest Batman outfit. Check it out:

batman

I was running around the Bristol offices all day, just joshing around, yelling, "I'm Batman!" and then talking to some of the other ESPN personalities about what they expected and where they thought Christian Bale would rank on the all-time Batman list. (My guess: behind Val Kilmer and Adam West but ahead of Michael Keaton. The best Batman, of course, is Kevin Conroy from the animated series but I don't need to tell you that.) No one really seemed to be as into it as me, except for Dan Patrick who was wearing a T-shirt with the Batman logo on it except it had boobs instead of wings. I tried to ask him where he got such an obvious forgery, but his bouncers stopped me before I could. Sometimes I forget that I'm not supposed to "talk to the talent."

Anyway, when the movie was about to start I was hopping around like a cricket on too much coffee. I could hardly contain my enthusiasm. Some of the other guys were pretty pumped, too, and they decided to play-fight me. I was supposed to be Batman and take them on. I was so pumped! HR, Kruk, Bowa, Scott, Steiner, Gammons, Linda Cohn, Dr. Jack Ramsey and the Syracuse Orangeman all came at me hard. I wish I could say I fought them off with my cunning and years of training, but I didn't. Before I knew it they had thrown me into a closet in the screening room, and with a few bumps on my head to boot! I guess I'm not Bristol's masked avenger quite yet!

When the movie started I managed to catch part of the screen through the door's keyhole, and from what I saw it rocked! It got kind of hard to focus in that janitor's closet because it was reminding me of that cave the guys buried me alive in the other day. And so the parts with the bats in the movie were even scarier to me. But then, like Bruce Wayne, I learned to confront my fears and decided that the closet was like my own Batcave! I even found two mice in there, and so I taped pieces of paper on them to be like wings and there was a mop that I named Alfred. It was really great!

And not to give anything away, but Batman Begins ROCKED! BEST! MOVIE! EVER! I'M BATMAN!!!!

Karl Ravech hosts ESPN's Baseball Tonight.

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