Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Church of Baseball

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."


M.C. O'Connor said...

Ay-you-hay-knee-oh came through today in manly fashion as well.

Must of been all the wallowing.

Brother Bob said...

Wallow away, me bhoyo.

JC Parsons said...

Nicely written post. Thought provoking. Of course, one thought is that at least half of my baseball behavior is "juvenile." Guess I hang out with too many teenagers.

Glad you mentioned Pablo's slide. I did see it and I was very impressed. I can't wait to see where he starts next year. No more Fred or Emmanuel this year. More Nate and Eugenio.

M.C. O'Connor said...

.791 OPS for Fred puts him at 45th in the NL and AHEAD of both Rowand and Molina. Not bad for a near-rookie. I'm glad the team is shutting him down and he's getting surgery--I want to see a new and improved Fred next year. Now let's see what Schierholz can do.

I, too, saw Pablito's slide. He's quite and athlete, nimble and fast for a big guy. 1B next year?

How about Hennessey pitching a decent game? Is he part of our future or has he already blown enough chow to send him packing?

Brother Bob said...

I notice we're all SO detached from the old winning-and-losing issue that nobody cares to mention we SWEPT the Snakes. I think I may have one small woo hoo left in me.
Woo Hoo!
The beauty of this is that it relieves me of any insane notions of "rooting" for the Doggers. The goddam fucking Doggers.

Brother Bob said...

Hey MC- what's the answer to your Wise Irishman trivia contest? I assume he was not only wise but drunk when he said that.
It must have been Joyce or Shaw. Maybe Wilde?

M.C. O'Connor said...

No one quite so formidable, I'm afraid. Answer: Shane MacGowan, frontman of THE POGUES (one of my favorite bands).