Without question, the greatest thing about being a sports writer is the e-mail.
We know this probably comes as a shock, because whenever you ask us what it's like covering sports for a living, the topic of conversation invariably turns to free food.
OK, we admit it. The unlimited brownie stash in the Clemson press box is one of the job's preeminent perks.
But, in fact, it's the chance to touch base with the thousands (OK, dozens) of fans who zap our inbox each day that makes it all worthwhile.
As a precursor to today's first installment of Internet Mailbag, we'd like to take this opportunity to share our findings on the whole e-mail thing. We have uncovered these two unmistakable truths:
1. Lynx hockey fans are crazy about their hometown team, judging by the 29 e-mails we received today asking if Dan Kopec was un-retiring.
2. Bostonians have way too much free time. We know this from the large volume of e-mails we receive from chowderheads asking stuff like: "I heard a rumor that Rick Asadoorian dyed his hair platinum blond. In an effort to clarify this sacred mystery, would you please send me digital photos of his head ASAP? GO NOMAH!! Sawwwx Rule!! - Signed, Tiffany from Framingham."
To that end, we figured now is a good time to fire up the browser and address some of your pressing concerns.
With high school football just around the corner, John S. of Summerville, Ga., writes: "A good buddy of mine used to coach over there in Augusta. Says he won a championship in '95, had a bunch of players go D-I, and even had some kid named Deon make the NFL. I find that hard to believe, because the only Deion I know just hung up his spikes. Anyway, he took some job out here in the sticks four years ago, but he wants to get back to his old stompin' grounds. If he sends you a resume, you think you can hook him up?"
Well, John, to the best of our knowledge, all area coaching vacancies have been filled. But if your buddy is the coaching 'Starr' we're thinking of, then we have just four words for you: "He never shoulda left!"
We think Josey coach Tommy Macon has done a nice job filling mighty big shoes the past four seasons. But John Starr put Augusta prep football back on the map. We know Richmond County coaches are the lowest paid in the state. But the game hasn't been the same since you (uh, we mean he) left for Chattooga High. We'll give him a shout next time there's an opening and welcome him back with open arms.
Dan D. of 4 Yawkey Way, Boston, writes: "The trade deadline is a day away, and I need some advice fast! My ballclub is looking at some bullpen help for the stretch run, and the other GMs are asking about some of those YellowJackets. And, ya know, we got burned last year on the Ed Sprague deal. Any Dennis Tankersleys down in Georgia I need to know about?"
Well, Danny boy, I'm not about to put the future of Red Sox Nation at risk. Therefore, I respectfully decline to comment. If you wanna know about Rick Asadoorian's hair, though, you know whom to call.
And, finally, Jim B. of Martinez writes: "I just moved into my new digs on the golf course. But every time I tee it up, some fan calls on my cell asking me to trade for Jessie Rezansoff. Please help! My handicap is soaring!"
OK, Jimmy, here's our suggestion. Why not give your old buddy Wayne G. a call? Get him under contract with the Lynx, then ship his rights, a bag of pucks and some goalie-pads-to-be-named later for Rezansoff. Gretzky, Shmetzky! Bring Rezansoff back to town, and you're an instant legend!
Reach Rob Mueller at (706) 823-3425 or firstname.lastname@example.org.