Your favorite Chargers' blogger and mine has a pretty nice exclusive interview with the fan who recorded San Diego Padres Tom Garfinkel and started up Rain Man Gate. John being former president of the Gaslamp Ball Party Posse, it shouldn't be a surprise that the Padres Fan in question was actually a friend of his. Apparently, said fan had never even seen the movie.
The friend said it never even occurred to him that’s what the press would seize on: "It’s actually a 23-minute audio file. I recorded almost the entire meeting. They’re the ones that caught the ‘Rain Man’ thing. As pathetic as it sounds, I’ve never seen the movie, so the reference flew right over my head."
If you're paying attention, there was a lot of vitriol spewed at Tom Garfinkel, who has since apologized profusely. While the words chosen weren't the most eloquent or sensitive, I'm mostly of the opinion that Garfinkel just likes to talk in terms of movies, as opposed to being a classless numbskull or something of the like. I mean, not 30 seconds later in the recording where he references Rain Man he asks if he's in "the trust tree... the nest", which is less him "begging" to keep his words private and more obviously (to some) just another movie reference. This time pulling a direct quote out of the 2003 smash hit Old School.
If you talk to Tom Garfinkel for more than 5 minutes, you are guaranteed several movie references. In one conversation I had with him, he compared me to a character in Four Christmases.
"Wait," I said. "Are you talking about that terrible Vince Vaughn movie with Reese Whitherspoon? You saw that? You're using that in conversation as if it's pop culture?"
"Yeah," he said. "I mean, it's not a great film, but it had a few good lines. My wife and I saw it."
The biggest shame of it all is that these are exactly the types of conversations you get out of Tom Garfinkel and stuff like this makes it less likely that he'll have these conversations with anybody. Conversations where you can just tell that he's a bright guy who loves cheesy movies and gets passionate when defending his own and loves talking baseball. As a Padres Fan, I'm glad he stuck up for Carlos Quentin. I'm really glad that he's willing to talk to fans so candidly. And while I might wrinkle my nose at him if he were to say something I found slightly offensive, I'm confident that he would immediately notice my discomfort and make things right.
The best part about all this? The people getting all worked up about what they assume to be an "attack" on somebody are the same people who think that Carlos Quentin had no right to ever assume that Zack Greinke was intentionally meaning to cause Carlos Quentin any harm. In the same vein, those same people want to assume that Carlos Quentin had every single intention in the world to break Zack Greinke's collarbone.
Interesting how it works out when you pick and choose the context you want to place things, isn't it?