This week we continue our feature series celebrating our 10th anniversary of AngelsWin.com by highlighting one our members and big time contributors to our forum discussions.
Toby (tdawg87) has been not only a tremendous contributor to forum discussion over the years, but he also delivers some of the funniest one-liners and sarcastic humor on the website. One more thing to add before hearing from Toby himself; since March 1st of 2013 when we rolled out our new forum software, it came implemented with the Facebook "LIKE" system. Toby leads all AngelsWin.com members with 3112 'LIKES' on his posts in just over a full year. That's well over a thousand more than founder & executive editor of AngelsWin.com, Chuck Richter (1848).
Without further ado, here's our interview with AngelsWin.com's most liked member!
AngelsWin.com: When and how did you first come to AngelsWin.com?
tdawg87: I believe it was the beginning of 2008 when I first decided to sign up and start posting. I had been a lifelong lurker (and occasional troll) of the Official Message Board for about 5 years or so, and had lurked here for a couple years after finding the link on the main board. I signed up here and decided to actually contribute when I saw that the people here were much more down to earth and less "clique-y" than the OMB.
The name "tdawg87" was initially meant as a joke. My first name is Toby and I was born in 1987, but literally no one in the history of my life has called me "tdawg". It just kind of stuck. I tried changing it for about a day but I received many angry messages and death threats through pm's so I decided to change it back.
AngelsWin.com: What keeps you coming back to the site?
tdawg87: Honestly, the Angels themselves. There is always something to talk about with this team, be it good, bad, or Aybar-related. It's fun to talk about the team when they are winning, and it's just as fun to talk about them when they lose. There are so many different fans and personalities on AngelsWin that it's almost impossible to not be entertained by it.
Other than that, it's cool to be a part of what has become the "official" or "definitive" Angels board. There are players and management who read the site, as well as people with the inside scoop who will contribute to the forum as well.
AngelsWin.com: What have been some of your favorite articles and threads?
tdawg87: The Gameday threads are way too fun. Commenting (read: Complaining) about the game as it goes on pitch-by-pitch is a great experience. I always seem to miss a lot of the classics though. I think I was here a bit too late for the "Common Courtesy" thread, although I remember reading it and having a good laugh.
I like Glen's articles a lot because he seems to have a similar sense of humor as I, and from what I hear he also has an incredible butt. That's just what I've heard though.
AngelsWin.com: What in-person events have you attended from AngelsWin.com (Spring/Summer Fanfests, Charity Golf, Charity Softball)?
tdawg87: I have been to exactly 0 of these events. If I lived out west I'd certainly be at most of them, or at least the softball and golf events. Unfortunately I live on the east coast so there is no way for me to attend anything.
At some point in the future I will. Maybe. If somebody pays for my plane ticket. And lets me crash on their couch. Or bed. And buys all my food and beer.
AngelsWin.com: Why is AngelsWin.com your internet home for the Angels?
tdawg87: Why not? It has everything an Angels fan would need and then some. If you want a place to read in-depth articles regarding the organization from top to bottom, you come here. If you want a place to get insider interviews and perspectives that no one else has, you come here. If you want to get naked and do the Charleston when Trout hits a homerun, you come here. Even if you just need a place to vent when the team looks like poop, you can come here. It's great to have a place that is welcome to any and all fans who are allowed to support their team the way they see fit.
AngelsWin.com: In your opinion, what is AngelsWin.com’s best feature: the articles, charitable events, game-day chat, message boards, Fanfests, podcasts, etc?
tdawg87: I think it's an amalgamation of everything. The message board is, as Adam put it, "where the magic happens", but even if you aren't into that there is so much more this site offers to keep your attention.
It really has become the official Angels site in many respects. There is no place else with this active a community and this much contribution inside and out. People have worked and continue to work very hard at keeping this place active and relevant with not only Angels fans, but the organization itself.
AngelsWin.com: Where do you live and what do you do?
tdawg87: Unfortunately I live on the east coast in New Hampshire. You are probably asking yourself "Why is there an Angels fan living in New Hampshire, of all places" and I will get to that in a minute. Just calm your tits for like 5 seconds.
Within the last 2 years I started working at a bank. A money-bank, not a sperm-bank, sorry. I process mortgage loans. I still don't know what that means but I get my own office which is cool.
AngelsWin.com: Why are you an Angels fan?
tdawg87: My journey as an Angels fan is exactly what you'd expect it to be.
Basically, my dad grew up in So-cal and he grew up an Angels fan. My brother was born and lived out there for a while and it caught on with him as well. I was born in New Hampshire after my parents decided they wanted to shovel snow for the rest of their lives. My only interaction with Angels' baseball was when they were on NESN (the Red Sox sports network) and the extremely rare ESPN appearance. I was 5 when I started actually getting into the games and understanding what the hell was going on. I remember having to watch every last out, no matter what the score was. I would also run to my room and cry when they lost, so not much has changed actually. Basically, my first introduction to the Angels was through the Red Sox. I suppose this is like being introduced to your future wife by having a car battery attached to your nipples. I guess some people are into that sort of thing, but it was painful and caused massive chaffing. Thus, my hatred of the Red Sox was born while I was still occasionally shitting my pants.
That went on for about 5 years until it happened: I discovered I was too cool. I was too cool to like the same team my dad and brother liked. I had to be different. Oh don't worry, I still followed the Angels. But I did so from the safety of the closet. I openly bragged to my dad and brother about how I was now a White Sox fan (I was a Bulls fan at the time, so I thought "Hey this team is also from Chicago!"-10 year old logic) and how much better they were than the Angels. I honestly cannot explain what was going on in my head. I just wanted to be different for no reason.
It's funny because I don't think they realize even to this day that I would always check the Angels' score when they weren't looking because man that shit was in my blood.
Anyway, that lasted until 2001 when my dad bought the Extra Innings package for direct tv. I guess I though to myself "damn, now the Angels are on most nights, I can't keep up this charade any longer". So I sat down with him and had a nice talk. It was difficult to come out to my dad like that, as it is for most people in the closet, but he accepted me for who I was and never once judged me.
Ever since then I've been following every game, throwing several tantrums along the way.
AngelsWin.com: What was your first Angels game that you remember? Who’d you go with?
tdawg87: That I remember? I think it was 1991 or 1992. It was actually in Angels Stadium. We were out visiting relatives and going to Disney and all that. I believe it was against the Yankees and the Angels won 1-0.
I remember my aunt buying me a Florida Marlins hat for whatever ungodly reason. I guess in my 4 year old mind teal + black + ugly fish wrapped around a big F = I'm the coolest kid in kindergarten.
AngelsWin.com: Who have been your favorite players? Why? Any great stories or interactions with them?
tdawg87: Garret Anderson was always my favorite growing up. I loved watching him play, and I guess a part of me sympathized with his "meh, I'll get to it tomorrow" attitude. I always thought he was cool as hell. Like, the Billy Dee Williams of baseball. Except he was kind of lazy and shy and hated when you approached him at golf shops.
These days I guess I kind of like Mike Trout. Also have a thing for Aybar. He's a good player, but he also does some incredibly stupid yet hilarious things. You never know what will happen next with him. Will he swing at a pitch that hits him in the balls? Will he try stealing 2nd with the bases loaded? Will he moon the pitcher at home plate after hitting a homerun? You just never know what he will do.
As for interactions, I got Brad Fullmer's autograph in 2002. Also Bud Black nana-pointed at me when I yelled his name. Somewhere in some box is an autograph from the Angels' bullpen coach/catcher at the time. He was a heavy-set Hispanic fellow (it wasn't Bengie I swear). To this day I still don't know who he was or what his name was. But hey, he signed something for me so that's cool.
AngelsWin.com: How do you survive the offseason?
tdawg87: By watching football and hockey. Basketball bores the absolute crap out of me. I guess I just kind of sit around and do nothing like I always do, only there's less baseball involved and less inexplicable nudity.
AngelsWin.com: What’s one thing you’d like everyone in AngelsWin.com to know about you?
tdawg87: I enjoy long walks on the beach, Aerosmith, and hanging out with my friends. I play guitar and am actually a decent cook. Send me an email if this interests you.
*Here's our list of our 2014 AngelsWin.com Member Appreciation Interviews
*Here's our list of our 2014 AngelsWin.com Member Appreciation Interviews