"A Trip To Mike FrancesaLand" Is The Most Must Read Article Of All Time

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NewsdayFrancesa rises at about 6:30 or 7 each morning, helps get twins Jack and Emily and their brother Harrison ready for school, then takes them to the bus stop near the end of his driveway at 8:25. The next couple of hours are reserved for reading, making calls and preparing for that afternoon’s show, most of that time spent in the office at the heart of the first floor. The family bought the 74-year-old house in 2008 and spent a year renovating it before moving in from another part of town. (They live a few blocks from WFAN morning co-host Boomer Esiason.) The office was a key element of the project. It prominently features a series of pictures of Kennedy, one of them taken from behind in the oval office. It was a gift from Francesa’s former partner, Chris Russo. An entire cabinet is filled with books on the former president. “I know more about John F. Kennedy than I do about the New York Yankees,” Francesa said.

Come 11 a.m., Francesa got into the passenger seat of the SUV in which Julio Rosa drives him to the WFAN studios in lower Manhattan each morning. To call Rosa merely a “driver” is to sell him far short. He is a retired New York City police detective who has been with Francesa the past four years as a protector and confidant. “He’s part of the family,” Francesa said. Rosa now lives in Center Moriches but once was known as a frequent WFAN caller, Julio from Bay Ridge, whose passions were the Yankees and 49ers. Francesa conducts extensive personal and professional business sitting beside Rosa, so trust is a must. “He’s in on every conversation,” Francesa said. “There’s nothing that Julio doesn’t know — nothing.” Being driven to Manhattan frees him to get work done. This day he traded texts with producer Brian Monzo, who got OKs for interviews with Greg Anthony and Manhattan basketball coach Steve Masiello. It was an easy travel day, with arrival at 345 Hudson Street before noon. Not every commute goes that smoothly. “We had one recently where I said, ‘Turn down this block! What the heck are you doing?!’ ” Francesa said. “I’m cursing at [Rosa] in the car and yelling and screaming at the poor guy. Nothing gets me angrier than being late.” Tardiness, he said, “drives me nuts. That day I actually made them play commercials until 1:08 so I wasn’t late.”

Between noon and 1, Francesa ate lunch in his office, opened the first of what he insisted would be only two 20-ounce Diet Cokes for the day and made a call seeking information about Darrelle Revis’ deal with the Patriots. It would be a topic-rich show, including Justin Tuck leaving the Giants and the Big East Tournament underway. Francesa agonized as he watched his alma mater, St. John’s, blow the chance to complete a comeback over Providence, uttering a series of disgusted groans during a botched late possession. At 3:45, Eric Shanks, the president of Fox Sports, visited to welcome him to the fold. Francesa told him he was concerned about the relative lack of distribution of Fox Sports 2, which will simulcast him from 4 to 6 p.m. Francesa dismissed complaints that the station is not in HD on many systems. “There are certain people you need on TV in HD,” he said. “I’m not one of them.”

It has been 5½ years since Francesa and Russo broke up, yet Francesa has maintained his ratings dominance. That is why even though, he said, “there are a lot of people in that company [CBS, which owns WFAN] who would like to boot me out in the street,” he is under contract through early 2018 and believed to earn about $5 million per year. “If you’re hitting .210, you’re not staying in the lineup; if you’re hitting .330, you’re staying in the lineup and they are going to pay you,” he said.

There are must read articles. And then there are must read articles. This is a must read article. OK? When Newsday is covering sports, they’re the Daily News. When Newsday is covering Francesa, they’re the New York Times. OK?

Every single line in this article is more absurd than the last. From Francesa dropping his kids off at the bus which stops at the end of his driveway, to Julio acting as Mike’s Consigliere in the car, to his 2-Diet Coke maxmium, to the quote about John F. Kennedy, the whole thing is just completely and utterly ridiculous. Its almost just like Mike in a way. Like you know its intended to be serious but its so unintentionally funny at the same time that its that much better. You woulda thought we were profiling an ex-President or something with this expose.

But for any diehard Francesa fans, you’ll love the article. They address Al Albuquerque and Sweeny Murti NapGate. Talk about his relationship with Boomer and Carton and what he thinks about his old show vs his new show. Basically all the stuff you wanted addressed. What a life. What a fucking life.