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Day 69: Mookie Wilson

Mookie_Wilson_courtesy_of_New_York_MetsOne of my all time favorite baseball players is Mookie Wilson. And while I was a big fan of the New York Mets outfielder, my mother was an even bigger fan. Most people probably didn’t know she was a baseball fan, but she was.

I started following the Mets around 1981 and soon thereafter my parents started following too. Then in 1984 the Mets had the first draft pick and chose Shawn Abner, a graduate from my hometown high school in Mechanicsburg, PA. I think that probably solidified our allegiance to the team.

Anyway, Mom loved Mookie. The speedster on the bases had incredible work ethic and seemed to avoid all the scandals that plagued the Mets during the Strawberry, Gooden, and Hernandez era. Mom would have loved this letter. If she were still alive, I would have asked Mookie to send her a letter.

Day 69

Dear Mookie,

I grew up a die-hard Mets fan – unusual for someone living in Central Pennsylvania. All of my friends were Philly and Pirate fans. I watched every game on WWOR, captivated by Kiner, Zabriskie, McCarver and Staub’s call of the game.

My parents also became fans – I guess they gave in when my memorabilia draped room started looking more like the dugout at Shea than it did a bedroom. My mother, Lenora Sandridge, was your biggest fan. When you would get on base, she would start talking about how “Mookie’s gonna steal second.” She loved to watch you run the bases and I agree with her, few players truly make an art out of base-running. You were the best.

The other thing that you have in common with my mother is truck driving. No, she never drove a truck, but she often said that that would be her dream job – just driving the country and being her own boss.

Screen Shot 2015-03-10 at 8.01.13 PMShe never realized that dream. She passed away in 2006 of heart disease at the age of 63. Shortly after that I learned that you had an 18 wheeler and drove short routes all over the southeast during the office season. She would have loved to have known that. Or maybe she did know that and it was just another reason she was so fond of you.

Anyway, as much as it would be nice to hear back from one of her (and my) heroes – learn more about your post baseball life, your recording work, etc. I don’t expect a response. I just wanted to share this little story with you.

Thanks for making baseball so fun to watch for my family and me during the 80s.

With admiration,
Reed Sandridge

Day 29: Lazlo

An exchange between Lazlo Toth and TIMEX from The Lazlo Letters

An exchange between Lazlo Toth and TIMEX from The Lazlo Letters

Years ago my dad bought me a book called The Lazlo Letters. It’s a collection of real letters sent by an overzealous and awkwardly patriotic crusader named Lazlo Toth. The man behind this persona was Don Novello, a comedic genius who wrote for Saturday Night Live for several years and later returned to the show as Father Guido Sarducci.

Anyway, the book is full of letters that this seemingly caring yet inappropriate citizen writes letters to companies, political figures, celebrities, etc. with uncomfortable praise and often laughable suggestions. They’re hilarious. I later bought his second book: Citizen Lazlo.

With enormous respect and admiration for Lazlo Toth, I penned the following letter.

Lazlo Toth

Dear Lazlo,

I recently embarked on a journey of writing handwritten letters every day for a year – you are Day 29! In a way, your books, The Lazlo Letters and Citizen Lazlo, inspired me to take on this adventure. I understand you have another book called From Bush to Bush, but I haven’t read that one and can’t find it in any bookstores. Pehaps you should try to place your books in stationery stores since people who read your books probably like to write letters! I give you that tip for free.

You always used to say, “You send out letters, you get back letters, that’s for sure!” I actually think you should consider changing your quote slightly because my experience is that you don’t always get a letter back. Perhaps these would work better:

“You send out letters, you might get letters back if you include return postage”

“You send out letters, you will definitely wait a long time to get a response”


“If you forget to write someone and lie about having sent them an email, they probably won’t believe you that it got lost in cyberspace, but if you say that you sent them snail mail, there’s no telling where that letter is at!”

You can use all of them for free.

Lazlo Toth-2By the way, I was disappointed you didn’t throw your hat in the 2003 California gubernatorial recall election ring. You would have won. Your history with Richard M. Nixon would have trumped any power move that Schwarzenegger could have thrown your way. But I saw Conan the Barbarian and get it if you were intimidated by him.

Keep writing, don’t give up on us now – when we need you the most!!

Your fan and friend,
Reed Sandridge


PS  Happy belated birthday – you’re the only person I know with a birthday on New Years Day.
PPS  Go Lakeside Dragons! Fight! Fight! Fight! 

Enclosed: Forever Stamp

Lazlo Toth-3

Day 28: Fitbit

Everyone wants to be healthy – and there are billions of dollars spent every year to help us be healthier. But very few products actually have the power to change behavior. One that did just that though for me was the Fitbit. I started walking more. I would take the stairs instead of the elevator at work, walk to places I would normally take public transportation and I’ll even confess that I have left my house at almost midnight to go for a walk just to get more steps. Call me crazy.

Unfortunately my Fitbit seemed to fall apart and it got to a point where I could no longer use it. So, I’m hoping Fitbit can help me out and get me back to being more active. Part of my recent motivation to get this fixed could possibly be fueled by the fact that I weighed myself this week and topped the scales at 188 pounds – the most I’ve ever weighed. Time to get in shape!


Dear friends at Fitbit,

Two years ago I was given the Fitbit Zip as a Christmas gift. It was great – it changed my behavior and I was more active. Unfortunately it stopped working after 13 months of use. I kept saying to myself that I would get it fixed, but a year has gone by now. I have noticed that I am less active and decided I wanted to start using it again. My father told me that he had something similar happen and you were kind enough to send him a replacement, so I am reaching out to you. There are three main defects.

  1. The USB sync device has completely fallen apart and no longer works. (see photo) InterestinglyFitbit Fitbit-2enough it seems that sometimes the Fitbit will sync if I get close to someone else who has a Fitbit syncing device.
  2. The piece that holds the battery in place has become “stripped” and no longer holds the battery firmly in place. I have this working most of the time now through a solution that I learned on MacGyver many years ago – but it’s not perfect and sometimes it stops recording my steps.
  3. Part of the protective covering on the silicon housing has worn off or fallen off leaving bare metal which has damaged my clothes. (see photo) 

I’m hoping you can help me get this back to working condition. I went to a sporting goods store where they sell Fitbits but they said I had to contact you.

Looking forward to getting more steps,
Reed Sandridge

Shout out to MacGyver!

Shout out to MacGyver!

Day 15: Mika

I was trying to downsize my apartment and was going through clothes when I found a shirt that belonged to a woman I used to date. We haven’t spoken since we ended things and it’s a bit awkward to send her this, but it’s hers and she should have it. Mika is originally from Uzbekistan – hence the last line in which is written in Uzbek.

Mika Day 15



Sorry I’ve had this so long. I hope that you are doing well and that 2015 is full of good health and happiness for you and your family.

Xayr, yaxshi boring!  (Farewell, may peace be with you!)