Bizarro baseball. You know what it looks like. No, not that bizarro baseball. Nor this one, though I do like the idea of a batless batsman. The bizarro baseball I’m talkin’ about is the kind I was forced to watch Tuesday through Thursday of this week.
My DirectTV Extra Innings and MLB.TV packages both blackout my home team St. Louis Cardinals’ television broadcast streams when they are playing in my home market (I happen to live on the south side of Chicago). And while I have become quite used to watching the Cubs’ broadcasts whenever they play the Cardinals, for the first time since I moved to the Chi, I had to endure the cliched, logorrheic tomfoolery of one Hawk Harrelson whilst watching my favorite ballclub play.
Of course, as a longtime neighborhood White Sox supporter, I have withstood many a Hawk-infested baseball game; so this was nothing new to me. But in the past I’ve always been able to leave the game knowing “whew, at least that guy isn’t callin’ my teams’ games!”
Plus, his shenanigans don’t seem quite as cute when YOUR team is the “bad guys”.
But that’s why we have the mute button. And M.O.P.
Bats are useful things. Sure, they’re made for hitting baseballs but that’s a pretty narrow view. For instance, you can spin in circles around them and then try to run a race. It’s not all that efficient but it’s sure fun to watch.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RSu1yfEeOF0]
Other uses? Well, my brother keeps one in his car just on the off chance he gets in a scrape while driving. You might think it’s silly but, well, this:[youtube http://youtu.be/5SHJE62FKM4]
So, let’s review. Bats: useful for hitting homeruns, also useful for hitting people. Just ask Jose Offerman.
With summer temperatures slowly creeping up on us, the potential for flop-sweat induced wedgies at the ballpark is on the rise, making an afternoon or midmorning rain shower a pleasant respite for anyone wanting to spend some serious time unstuck at the game. Though it is not widely known, making it rain isn’t quite as difficult as one might think. Here are three simple methods:
1. Be Different
As my doleful and oft unctuous colleague, Mr. Krause, taught us, sometimes, making it rain is just a matter of doing the opposite of what’s expected of you.
2. Be Ignorant
This is an easy method for rain-making, especially for those US Americans who reside in the realm of absurdity. I recall Focus on the Family asking their invisible friend to make it rain in Denver, to drown out the “changes” being outlined by Obama at the 2008 DNC.
3. Be Livan Hernandez
This is the easiest, most economical way to make it rain. In fact, I’m doing it right now… to the guy in the cubicle next to me.
Hate me ‘cuz I makes it rain, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.
Change and I don’t get along too well. I remember when the Cardinals introduced the Sunday home game alternate cap — the navy blue one with the red bill and the profiled bird. I couldn’t sleep for weeks.
WHY?!?! WHY ARE THEY DOING THIS!?!? WHAT IS WRONG WITH THE REGULAR CAP!?!?!
Things are better now; but living in Chicago, I became quite used to the kind of daily drama inherent in a city where Ozzie Guillen is employed. Now, with him gone, life is just… boring? I mean, Adam Dunn is hitting. Jake Peavy is pitching. The Cell hasn’t caught on fire.
What fun is that?
I miss the good old days — the days when the city stopped for the Crosstown Rivalry, the Windy City Classic. I miss seeing Sweet Lou bump bellies with umpires, AJ Pierzynski gettin’ cold cocked by Michael Barrett, listening to drunk frat boys explain the infield fly rule to washed out bimbos while double-fisting $7 Old Styles.
Is nothing sacred anymore?!?!
Until I see Dale Sveum and Robin Ventura do a rap song about bad contracts, I’m gonna have to think not.
Barack Obama finally came out in support of gay marriage. I’m not exactly sure why this is news since a majority of the country holds the same position. By definition, our elected leaders are our representatives and should represent the views that we hold. Obama’s change of position (which isn’t really all that much of a change if you really think about it) merely puts him on the right side of history and firmly with the majority.
How did we get to this point anyway? There’s the easy answer that it’s the fault of religion and the myth of “traditional” marriage (which conveniently ignores the other acceptable definitions of marriage laid out by their holy books):
I think it’s simpler than that, though. People are just afraid of what they don’t know. Plenty of baseball fans hated Jackie Robinson when he first started playing but 60 years later, the biggest stars in the game are a veritable rainbow coalition. 25 years from now, we’ll be telling similar stories about gay marriage.
Here’s the thing. Marriage is supposed to be about two people who love each other committing to live and work together. Sometimes it works out, sometimes it doesn’t but the sexuality of the person has nothing to do with their ability to love or make a commitment. If you want to simplify things even further, here are two examples. Kim Kardashian had a “traditional” marriage. This gentleman’s two mothers did not.
Now, would you rather have his two moms as parents or Kim Kardashian?
I had a dream. In this dream, I negotiated a contract where I would be paid beyond my useful years for doing absolutely nothing at all. Once any talent I had was completely gone, instead of living off my pension or social security, I would get paid a ridiculously large sum of money for my “personal services,” but only if I chose to accept it. I mean, you never know. It’s possible I wouldn’t want a million dollars a year and would say “no,” right?
But it was only a dream because MLB has set the precedent and there will be no more of the clauses that made Ryan Zimmerman and Albert Pujols very happy men. No bathing in champagne for me. No private islands in the Caribbean bought with my personal services clause.
No, I’ll have to chase my dreams elsewhere. Here, for instance.
The next time you’re late for work, spill coffee on your khakis and then get rejected by the hot gal at your local bakery, just remember: life could always be worse.
You could be a delusional sexist homophobe. Or, you could be A.J. Burnett.
Equally terrifying, I know.
But it just doesn’t get much worse than A.J.’s lackluster performance from Wednesday night. In fact, in the entire history of Major League Baseball, it was the single worst start by a pitcher since 1929 as Burnett was lit up by the Cardinals for 12 hits and 12 earned runs in just 2 2/3 innings.
But today is Friday, folks, and I don’t wanna release you for the weekend all depressed, so when that worst day ever does choose you as its next victim, make sure you watch the below video to remind you of the BEST. DAY. EVER!!!!