Monday, April 3, 2017

Root root root for the home team, if they don't win....


Sorry, just getting ready for Mets opening day.

I'll be watching today, but my rooting muscles are stiff. Never did get to warm up much during spring training. The long-awaited United States victory in the World Baseball Classic might have gotten me into shape, if I'd known it was going on before it was over. Maybe if a game or two had been on TV somewhere I would have.

Other MLB teams started yesterday -- the Yankees not only lost their first game of the season, they lost the first game of the season, to Tampa. The Diamondbacks got a walkoff win against the Giants, and the Cards took a wild one from the Cubs. Today my team starts its drive to win its division.

More people are concerned with Gonzaga vs. NC tonight, but I've never been a fan of basketball or college sports. Maybe because my alma mater was not a Division I school. I think we played in a division so low it did not actually get a number. I think it was NCAA Division 😜.

I got excited about baseball when I was a little kid, but I had to learn how to watch it. No one in my family was into watching sports. I tried to enjoy it on my own, I really did, but I was kind of bored and no one explained to me the fine points of the game. Then the Mets went from being a powerhouse club to an embarrassment again and I gave up. Yet, despite this hardscrabble childhood I eventually came to love the game, although I have always been a terrible athlete.

You're wondering: how can such a fine hunk of manhood as myself be bad at sports? And yet it's true. It didn't help that no one around me taught me how to do anything sportswise -- there was precious little instruction in our public school and none at home. And I was a lazy kid anyway, preferring to read or watch the tube. To this day I have the coordination of a drunken panda with vertigo.

All this was the inspiration for a book you'll notice to the right, MacFinster II: MacFinster's Folly, the one with the big baseball on the cover. It's not a baseball book per se, but baseball is key to its comedic plot. Our hero, George Darmowycz, has one thing in common with me, and that's a complete inability to play the game. When he is chosen to participate in a million-dollar home-run hitting contest, he and his best pal Rex MacFinster wonder if it's some kind of setup.

As you can imagine, trouble ensues, and then some.

It's a sequel to MacFinster, but you don't need to read that to enjoy the second one. If you're of a mind, you could check out a sample chapter on Amazon or read the one I posted when it came out.

I am also considering running an essay in this space, one I wrote a few years back when an editor friend was looking for essays on baseball for a book he was compiling. His publisher ultimately passed on the project, and I've never done anything with it. It's got some painful memories and I've been a little reluctant to put it out on this blog, which I usually enjoy as a light or pensive project, not a gut-wrenching bleedathon. Still thinking about it.

Maybe if the Mets start the season poorly I'll want a gut-wrenching bleedathon. Failure is always an option for my boys in blue.

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