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The old man and MLB

“Deep down I’m pretty superficial.”

Ava Gardner

I am done watching major league baseball. Nothing to make a stink about, and I doubt anyone will care, but I’m done. This world series holds no interest for me, I care nothing about any of it – the people, the places – not the things made of it or the air about it.

Either they have choked my golden goose to death in an uncomfortable way, or I’m getting older and unable to create spasms of excitement through the observed violence of sports-based joy, it’s over – I’m sitting the rest of it out in a comfortable chair while trying to give advice to my grand-sons from half a century away.

To be fair, I’m currently sitting at home watching the paint dry on an HOA approved update to a door. This would not happen to a younger man and I might be lashing out in response to it, or the fumes.

Basketball lost me years ago. I haven’t watched a single minute of it since Kobe raped a kid about my daughters age. I lost all interest in the sport on that day– I don’t follow it on media, I don’t watch kids playing it at the park. I don’t miss it, there’s something fundamentally wrong about raping a girl then getting away with it because you are famous and have a lot of money. I suppose we are lucking he didn’t just cut here into pieces and throw her out with the trash, though he probably would have gotten away with that too.

Baseball is more complicated. I grew up playing and watching baseball – it has been like movies for others – a thing I just did and enjoyed. Now for some reason it’s dead to me – moldy like an old love, or a science experiment that cooked too long in the wrong places.

I work at a place that used to just have time sheets for your payroll. Every day you came to work, you signed the sheet with your name, your time in, and time out.

Over the years it has gotten more complicated. Now you come to work and, within a five-minute time allowance (either way), you call a special phone number at the one special phone designated for this purpose. You then manually answer many prompts on the dial pad, as directed, after entering your special employee number and the last four of your social security number. You do this with the other twelve employees waiting for you to finish so they can do it too, and you do this when you come in, and when you leave for the day.

None of this is new -- gilding the lily was Shakespeare at his best, and who could forget that William Blake wrote of ‘binding with briar's his joys and desires’ back when the plague was big. I think humans just have tendency to take the simple comfort and joy in things for only so long, and then they pile shit on them until they die while ecclesiastically dancing in the remaindered poo, all the while hoping for a salvation that involves free will without accountability.

For me, this is kind of what baseball has become. To be honest, it’s kind of how life has become.


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