Thursday, October 11, 2007

Webster's Agrees To Use 2007 Mets Team Photo Under Entry For "Choke"

Unprecedented Move Might Be Trend Setter, Industry Analysts Say

New York, NY (Oct. 12) - In a move that has been, for years, only threatened and joked about in a similar fashion, Merriam-Webster's Dictionary has announced that, beginning with its 2008 editions, all copies of their dictionaries will include a team photo of the 2007 New York Mets next to the entry for "choke."

"The time is right," Webster's spokesman Phillip Manfrenchentensen said of adding an image to help illustrate one of the definitions of choke. "Usually, people just joke about it -- like during speeches or the like -- placing a person or persons photo next to a word to accentuate its meaning. This time we figured, why not the Mets?"

The 2007 Mets blew a seven-game lead over the Philadelphia Phillies with 17 games to play, and didn't make the playoffs.

Manfrenchentensen said others were considered for the "choke" designation, such as the 1964 Phillies, the 1978 Red Sox, and the 1967 Arabs, who blew a big lead and size advantage against the Israelis in losing their war. But in the end, the Mets were chosen for one reason, mainly.

"Money," Manfrenchentensen said. He then explained that a baseball watchdog group called Strike Three had raised over $50,000 in the several days following the season in order to petition Webster's to publicly humiliate the Mets even more.

Beginning in 2008, all Webster's dictionaries will have a photo like this next to the following definition: To fail to perform effectively because of nervous agitation or tension, especially in an athletic contest

Manfrenchentensen said a team photo lifted from the team's own web site will be placed near the choke entry.

Mets fan Louie Feresh hopes the Webster's move goes one step further.

"I'd like to see the word 'Mets' replace choke, to be honest with you," Feresh said. "You know, as in, 'they pulled a Mets job'. Kind of like the Buffalo Bills on Monday night, against Dallas."

While confirming the Mets' addition to the 2008 -- and beyond -- editions, Manfrenchentensen denied a report that Mets GM Omar Minaya's photo would be used to help illustrate the word "sucker", in light of Minaya announcing that manager Willie Randolph would return in '08 despite the choke, er, Mets job.

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