* Dear Mr. Curt Schilling

Questions from a lawyer/blogger/fan.

Dear Mr. Curt Schilling,

A 1990 episode of Saturday Night Live featured this exchange among five-time hosts (members of the exclusive “five-timers club” or “fivers”):

Paul Simon: Step into the reading room. I think you’ll like it. Steve, look who’s joined us.

Steve Martin: Tom, Tom old bean! Let’s have a look at you. That robe fits you smashingly.

Tom Hanks: Thanks, Mr. Martin.

Steve Martin: Please, call me Mr. Steve Martin.

Tom Hanks: Thanks, Mr. Steve Martin.

Hence my salutation, Mr. Curt Schilling.

I am a lifetime Red Sox fan (born in Boston, grew up in Maine, went to school in Boston, now live in Acton), blogger, and recently had ankle surgery. I’ve been enjoying reading your blog and have a few questions that I hope you have time to answer in your blog.

I own a boutique patent and trademark law firm in Maynard and recently saw you at Clock Tower Place, where Green Monster Games recently leased office space.

Question: Why did you change the name of your gaming company from Green Monster Games to 38 Studios?

When I saw you in Maynard, I was surprised because you are much taller than you appear on television.

Question: What are people most surprised to discover about you when they meet you?

When I lived in Denver for two years, the television and radio stations were full of advertisements for auto dealerships owned by Denver Bronco’s quarterback John Elway. I’ve always felt that a famous Red Sox player could have similar success in New England.

Question: Why haven’t more famous sports players followed John Elway’s model after their playing days are over?

I grew up in Maine listening to Red Sox games on AM radio, and watching the occasionally televised games on WSBK TV38. I would often listen in bed with an earpiece connected to a small battery-powered radio (after my parents thought I had gone to sleep). Now, I live about 20 miles from Boston (in Acton) and I have no radio reception for any Red Sox games. WEEI’s signal is too weak.

Question: Should I move back to Maine so that I can listen to Red Sox games on the radio? Or is there hope that Red Sox radio coverage in greater Boston will improve?

As I mentioned, I’m a lifetime Red Sox fan, avid Red Sox fan (is there any other kind?). I lived through the heartbreak of 1975, 1978, and 1986 and am still energized from the 2004 World Series victory. Thanks a million for that! Your performance, by the way, will go down in history as one of the greatest individual sacrifices a player has ever made for his team.

Unfortunately, I haven’t been to a Red Sox game since the 2004 season. After the World Series victory in 2004, the Red Sox ended their family bargain game program and limited the number of tickets that a fan can purchase to four. We have three kids but can only purchase four tickets (and I’m using “can purchase” hypothetically, as I haven’t actually been able to purchase Sox tickets in years). My younger two kids (ages 8 and 10) have never been to a Red Sox game.

Question: Why not just eliminate the scalpers and “professional” middlemen and have the Red Sox sell all tickets via auction? This way, the market would establish the fair market value for the tickets. As it is now, ticket resellers are making money at the expense of fans, money that should be going to the Red Sox. If the Red Sox eliminated resellers, it could take the extra revenue to reestablish the family bargain games and/or eliminate the four-ticket maximum for legitimate fans. Your thoughts?

Speaking of bloody socks, I had foot surgery two weeks ago (on the inside of my ankle, not the outside). In the fall of 2004, I had rotator cuff surgery, and it took me a year to feel normal. Two weeks after my foot surgery I’m still on crutches.

Question: How the heck did you pitch in a Major League Baseball game the day after having your ankle stitched up?

Pete Rose is back in the news today, admitting that he bet on the Reds daily and hoping to manage a baseball team again.

Question: Do you think Pete Rose should be in the Baseball Hall of Fame?

Question: Jim Rice?

Question: Mr. Curt Schilling?

Question: Why do sportswriters vote on the Hall of Fame? Why not fans, or better yet, players?

That’s it for my questions. Keep up the blogging, I think it’s great. If you blog regularly during the final seasons/games of your career, then you won’t need to write a separate autobiography. Your blog will be it.

By the way, I’d encourage you to take advantage of FeedBurner’s feed hosting and optimizing services for your blog. My friend Rick Klau would be glad to hook you up.

Oh, and if you happen to need patent or trademark help for your game company, I know of a law firm in Maynard, in the same building as 38 Studios, that specializes in game patents (including a MMORPG patent), and that is run by an avid Red Sox fan who also happens to be a blogger and who just had foot surgery. Tell ’em Mr. Erik Heels sent you!

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