NEW YORK - Many of you seem to enjoy getting an inside look at how the media covers a big event like a World Series.
Allow me to offer a glimpse into last night's glamorous Game 1 experience.
Rode to stadium with six Inquirer colleagues and a cooler packed with our postgame meal - or, more simply put, with six turkeys and seven turkey sandwiches.
Four hours before Game 1, the main press box resembled the Tokyo subway. Bodies and computers made things impassable. The adjoining work rooms were overflowing too, the precious spots apparently having been claimed at dawn by savvy veteran journalists.
The poor Yankees. How were they know people would be interested in covering a World Series? Having hosted 39 others, there was no way they could possibly have anticipated a crowd.
Beat a hasty retreat for the auxiliary press box, a lofty, outfield perch where Philadelphia sportswriters were assigned seats and sherpas to get them there.
After rappelling up there, it was quickly apparent that more clothing, binoculars and oxygen would be required. The freezing wind howled like a New York cabbie. The puddles of water that two days of rain had left on our chairs and tables were icing over.
We all would have huddled near the TV monitors for warmth had there been any TV monitors. Apparently it was OK for the cream of the nation's sportswriters to get wet but not for TVs.
Far below, set up atop the right-centerfield wall, we could see a pair of NYPD snipers. Had New Yorkers finally tired of the Yankees uber-obnoxious broadcast team of John Sterling and Susan Waldman?
By game time, the rain and cold climate brought to mind Nome or a Rockies game in October.
On the field below, we could see Yanks starter CC Sabathia - the only human large enough to be visible - ambling toward the bullpen for warm-ups.
Even up here, in the section formerly known as Pluto, the ground shook.
Let's play nice
Seems like this I-95 World Series has precipitated a lot of ugly sniping between the more sophomoric elements in New York and Philadelphia.
Now here at Touch 'em All we generally abstain from such tomfoolery, preferring whenever possible to take the journalistic high road.
A few points, however, must be made:
1. How could a newspaper in New York, a city that fancies itself as sophisticated and cosmopolitan, put a doctored photo of a Phillies player in a skirt on its front page?
What's that you say? The paper is owned by Rupert Murdoch.
2. Philly's tabloid, the Daily News, would never stoop so low as to run a doctored photo of an opposing player in women's clothing.
Of course, if it wanted to, it could probably find an undoctored one of Alex Rodriquez in heels.
3. Speaking of A-Rod, since when is Kate Hudson a big celebrity?
Oh, I forgot, New Yorkers also consider Regis Philbin a big celebrity.
4. When New Yorkers brag about New York, they're actually talking about Manhattan, a place where none of them live.
They all reside further from the Statue of Liberty than Philadelphians, residing like gerbils in grimy, overpriced hovels in the outer boroughs or, worse yet, Long Island.
History across the river
If you get to a game at the new Yankee Stadium, bring your own ATM machine, make sure you're seated someplace where the altitude approximates earth's and take a moment to glance across the Harlem River.
What you'll see there is a cluster of ugly buildings on a bluff, structures so bland they appear to have been designed by a particularly unimaginative East German.
Those buildings occupy the site of the old Polo Grounds. For those too young to remember, that's where Christy Mathewson pitched, where John McGraw managed, where Willie Mays made his famous catch, and where Bobby Thomson hit the "Shot Heard Round the World."
More important for Phillies fans, it's where Philadelphia beat New York not once but twice in a World Series.
In 1911, Connie Mack's A's beat McGraw's Giants in six games, Frank Baker earned the nickname "Home Run," and all the sportswriters fit in the press box. They won in 1913, too.
Game 1 Limerick
New York fans, they think they're above it.
They're smug and they're rude and they love it.
So how 'bout if Philly.
Knocks their Yankees silly.
Then like Tug we can tell 'em to shove it.
5 things overheard pregame
1. "I can't believe I'm standing here in Yankee Stadium for Game 1 of the World Series. I've got my hat, my program, my $10 beer."
3. "What's the big deal? It's steak and you add cheese."
4. One Yankee fan to another: "The Phillies have never beaten the Yanks."
"They beat them twice this year."
"That don't count."
5. "Hey, a Bud Light is only 220 calories. Time to start my diet."
5 things not overheard pregame
1. "No, please, I insist you go before me."
2. "Wish I were sitting up there in the auxiliary press box."
3. "Yes, I can spell Teixeira."
4. "That three-piece oom-pah-pah band on the main concourse really rocks."
5. "Now this is baseball weather."
New Yankee Stadium observations
Among its best features are all the photos from Yankees history. There's one from 1927 in which Babe Ruth is looming over diminutive manager Miller Huggins. Kind of reminds you of Andy Reid and Joe Banner.
I'm only basing this on appearances, but I'm pretty sure Joba Chamberlain is not a Rhodes Scholar. And that hat certainly doesn't help alter the impression.
Several Yankees employees walk around the concourse holding signs that say "How may I help you?" It's all for show. They were unable to get me a seat in the main press box.
In another photo, this one in the food court, a young boy is handing a glass of milk to Ruth. Had there been a caption, it undoubtedly would have said, "Where's my beer chaser?"
How come in the midst of the worst recession in decades, there were lines to get into the Yankees Team Store, where hats went for $65 and uniform tops $300, and to get into NYY, a restaurant where the King crab legs go for $54.75?