Sunday, July 28, 2013

Braun Goes Down

I'm not going to join the sanctimonious hype surrounding Ryan Braun and Alex Rodriguez' supposed drug use.  Braun took the plea deal.  And, he comes across as a bum.  Alex is being spit upon before anything actually comes down.  Turn the guy into public enemy number one and do with him what you will.

The phony "war on drugs" mentality has taken over baseball.  This weekend, there will be no new players inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.  This is because the baseball writers are so freaked out about PED's, they won't vote for the "steroid era" players.  Never mind the racist past of "baseball," or the despicable behavior of Hall of Famers like Ty Cobb.

"Baseball" (whatever that term means) is applauding the Players Unions for not defending the supposed users.  I think that stinks.  The owners and the media have enough power to deem anyone suspected of drug use as guilty.  The union is supposed to be on the workers' side.  C'mon man, whatever happened to due process?

The public seems not to care so much.  In fact, I bet a lot of fans really miss the homers more than they are celebrating the rash of no-hitters.

Consider this: If you were a poor boy in the Dominican Republic, and had a chance to escape from a life of cutting sugar cane, would you do what you had to do to have a chance?

Monday, July 22, 2013

Healing Heart

Recovering from a heart attack is an emotional experience.  I find myself tearing up when friends come through the door.  I'm teary thinking about all of the calls I've received;  some completely unexpected, from people long alienated, who step forward to wish me well.

Christopher Hitchens, the brilliant cultural critic was a prominent atheist.  As he was dying of cancer, he was told that people were praying for him.  He responded: "If it makes them feel good, that's fine with me." I was asked my religion at the hospital and I said I was an atheist.  But, if the spiritual shows up, and it has, like Hitchens, that's okay too.

The men who work in my garage are from Africa.  They are a lovely group.  My favorite is Clement.  Every Sunday, when I come down for my car, I joke with him about the church services he plays.  I tell him my Sunday dose of Jesus is keeping me "saved" for the week.  He knows I really like the music, and he's right.

When I told Clement I was home from a heart attack, he took my hand and looked me straight in the eye.  "You are fine now, you are fine," he said quietly.

I believe him.