Opening Day is a’ coming

Evocative of Baseball Opening Day

I feel like summer is just around the corner. As the calendar starts to near the end of March, I always start to look for it, start to feel it in my bones. Maybe it’s because the days start getting a little longer and a little warmer. Maybe it’s because they start talking about the Baseball trades that are happening on the sports reports. Opening Day is just a few days away! I feel the butterflies start to swim around in my stomach.

 

I tell you, spring and summer were the best times back in the 50’s and 60s’. None of that year round school for us old timers! May 31 rolled around, and it’s see ya’ later to the teachers until the first week of September….Yahooo!!

 

I would go to the old wooden toy box back in my room, and starting digging down to the bottom, looking for my old worn out, smelly leather baseball glove with “Pee Wee” Reece’s name engraved in it. I don’t know how I ended up with Pee Wee, as I never played a lick of ball in the infield. I was always an outfielder.

 

I tried out for third base once, but after I had stopped the first four hard bouncer’s that came my way with my face instead of my glove, the coach thought it might be safer to put me in left field. I agree with his decision.

 

I liked left field. It was one of those positions where you could kind of day dream a little. Most everything that came out that way was either an easy pop fly, or a one bouncer. I was a cinch at catching those. None of that “hot corner” stuff for me.

 

I once was standing out in left field during a game and looking down at the ground trying to spot any four leaf clovers that might be growing there. I heard the loud crack of the bat, and looked up to see the baseball headed over my head. Way over my head. I didn’t want to look completely stupid, so I turned around and stuck my old glove out and ran as fast as I could towards the fence. The ball dropped right into the webbing of my glove. I never saw it until it did. I heard a cheer go up from the stands, and when we came in, I got more pats on the back, and Atta boys then I had ever gotten before. I just said “I had it all the way”

I could never bring myself to disappoint all those people by telling them it was just pure luck.  As my old golf coach once said, “I’d rather be lucky than good any day”  I totally agree.

 

We are afraid….

….of things which are happening half way around the world.  And I know that we have to be cautious.  But, if we live our lives afraid of forces who do heinous things, and dramatically and cinematically record them just to make us afraid, then we have given over the victory to them.

Some members of humanity who are or were madmen have always done things such as this, but have never before had the ability to project them to the entire world on a practically uncontrolled and unregulated new technology.  Two beheadings of innocent men is an inhuman act but, I can’t imagine the kind of fear that Vlad the Impaler would have caused if he had been capable of putting his deeds on the Internet.

We didn’t have the internet between 1958 and 1962 when over 45 million Chinese people starved to death…so very few people even know about it.  The internet wasn’t there when 3 million or so people were tortured to death or hacked to death in the killing fields of Cambodia during the early 70’s.

Stalin’s forced starving of up to 12 million Ukrainians during the 30’s is scarcely known (because the Ukraine wanted independence…sound familiar??  And he was our ally??)   What is Facebook or Twitter had been around then?

Many, many acts of tremendous, inhuman violence have occurred during human history.  Way too many to mention here. Most of these acts are so deeply buried in history books that it is hard to seek them out and find them, and really hard to believe they really occurred. They were only documented on the written page, with few if any photographs.  There were no “viral videos” of them.

If I die in an attack on this country by these crazed terrorists, I will not do it because I am hiding in my house and not living my life.  Screw them, I refuse it!  I hope to make a trip to the beach next month and I’m going to sit around and worry about them.  The hell with them.

Let the countries in the neighborhood of these killers put the boots on the ground, or let them be taken over.  I don’t think they will let that happen.  Saudi Arabia itself has one of the most well equipped and largest armies in the world.  Outside of Israel, they are the strongest in the area.  Maybe they think their army is “just for show” so let them put it to work.  We certainly have provided them enough money one way or the other. Also how about Jordan and Turkey…the countries who want the U.S. to foot the bill and provide the manpower.  Let them do it.  Their excuse is that we caused it, and that may have some truth to it.  They want us in, then they want us out, then they want us in.

There are many more things that I am afraid of, besides the beasts in the Middle East.

I’m afraid of the loss of love within families, friends and communities.

I’m afraid of seeing another child die at the hands of their Father or Mother, because we are unwilling to stop the drug problems in this country or because we are afraid to admit that we need many more facilities and experts to treat mental illness, we need more and better trained workers to help.

I’m afraid of another kid being mistakenly killed in his bed by some “gang” member who is there because he had nothing better to do, maybe nothing to do at all.

I’m afraid we have spent way, way too much money on fighting wars in foreign countries and way, way too little money on creating jobs for young people, and on education.  If we had taken all the money we have spent on war in the last 13 years and applied it to education, not one student would have had to pay for a college education.

I’m afraid we are becoming creatures who depend too much on electronic devices as a way to express ourselves, and not enough time looking into each other’s eyes when we speak.

I’m afraid we are going down the path of sacrificing our emotions, our privacy, our finances, and our freedom to the idol of the “cloud” What happens when we turn so much of our lives over to it, that if a solar flare brings it all down we would be hard put to survive?  Are we there already?

As I was exercising on 911, I was looking out the big window in the front of the room and saw at least 6 jets flying from West to East.  They were not the ones who leave the big puffy contrails, but the ones in a hurry to get somewhere, whose contrail vanishes in a minute or two.  I bet there were a lot of fighter planes in the sky that day.  We have a lot of them in this country.  We have a pretty damn secure country really.  We have a pretty great country really.

It’s going to be a real shame if we let fear mongers, warmongers, professional people dividers, the media, the politicians, the mega financial institutions, or the terrorists scare us into abandoning or giving away the freedoms we have been given in this country.

I really think if anybody with ill intent hits the beaches of our country they will be in for a big surprise.