Wednesday, September 10, 2008
The Church of Baseball
Starting pitcher: Brother Bob
Annie Savoy tells us no other religion satisfies like The Church of Baseball, and she's tried them all. I've tried a few myself, (my second choice would be "None of the Above") and I have to agree with Annie.
Baseball inevitably draws us to thoughts of Karma, the subtle chains of cause and effect which are connected to everything. Superstition and magical thinking abound. We, as fans and now commentators, instinctively feel a link between what we do and what might happen as a result of our doing it. We blame ourselves for streaks ending because we broke some taboo, or jokingly credit someone else for a winning streak because he was out of the country the whole time.
It all seems to make some kind of sense. On the other hand, it's all clearly just a big joke. Right? We laugh about it. It's a form of juvenile teasing.
I'm not quite sure where I'm going with this.
I now look at god as a kind of emotion; an aspect of psychology. We "goddam" when we're angry, "thank god" when we're happy, "oh god" when we come, etc.
Baseball brings out big feelings. Community, anticipation, pride, tradition, action, suspense, ecstasy, agony. Many enjoy wallowing in the intellectual aspects of Baseball too, such as on-field strategy, personnel issues, and so on. But this is the by-product of irrational pre-occupation with the game, frequently crossing over into obsession.
Right here is where I want to paste on the speech by James Earl Jones from near the end of "Field of Dreams." You know the one I mean.
I feel sorry for people who don't love baseball.
My bonehead Z-boy Eugenio came through in a manly fashion and won us a game. Did you see Pablo's brilliant slide home? The boy's "got it."
at 10:04 AM