Archive for the ‘Red Sox’ Category

“Neither A Borrower Nor A Lender Be”

If you had never read Shakespeare, you might have missed his practical advice. About money. When a father tells his son, “Neither a borrower nor a lender be.” Or the Great Dictum, so your life does not become one big lie. “This above all: to thine own self be true /And it must follow, as the night the day /Thou canst not be false to any man. ”

A female marriage counselor writes today an article about women, wondering why thirty percent of women in a relationship with the wrong guy, would come before God and knowingly exchange vows. In sharing the bonds of fidelity, these women were already being unfaithful to themselves. And their rationale for the hoodwinking:

Because it was “the next logical step.” And no one else is coming. It’s my last chance.
The ticks of the internal clock, the self-imposed movement of the biological clock, is ticking louder. If a woman desired kids.
Because I have “invested too much time in the relationship.” And marriage might instantly make the relationship better. Like some kind of prayer.
If it does not work out, I can always obtain a divorce. (Already seeking an escape route, as if divorce could be used without consequence.)

Tonight I was going to sit next to a relative at the Red Sox game, whose life had become a lie. Someone who has been wrestling with herself for too many months. And who was difficult to be around. And like a hitting coach, I waited for someone to come to me, before handing out advice.

In the way of full disclosure, I was another B student still trying to just get by, and not super achieve. Before grade inflation hit. Who used a library, despite the dictum, “Neither a borrower nor a lender be.” And I happen to be sitting next to a beautiful blonde in a bar who was a an out-of town friend of a woman I had met. And I then took in her life story. About a prevailing theme, her prevailing belief, that I am not lovable. Her every day belief which drives her. A woman who could not look you in the eyes.

Watching her wandering eyes, she told me that she had slept with 190 men in her life. And in hearing her life story, that she did not want to ever marry. But she loved sex. With an overall theme if I was listening, about a prevailing belief In relationships that “I am not worthy.” And where there was first no belief, and then no trust. In herself.

She had tried cocaine. And she could assure me that she could stop at any time. But she had to return to the restaurant where I had dinner, because she was going to return a phone to a couple who she had spent last Saturday night with. Though she did not know their names. But the guy was going to be there. And I heard second hand that she had done a line of cocaine with the couple last Saturday. And she was a single mom who lived with her three-year old son three hours from my city. And her son was teaching her a lot about life. I began to connect the dots, which were that she had been in the mortgage business which seemingly collapsed. And she had worked in New York and San Diego. And i somehow saw a line that suggested her statistics were related to what she was doing now.

In aiming for an acceptable relationship. Those women being unfaithful to themselves in bonds of fidelity, in that story in the Huntington Post, were at least trying at something. Another woman my age had witnessed my conversation. She told me the next night, before taking a call to give her own adult daughter some relationship advice, that the male bartender had told her I had been talking to a woman who seemed to sell out for a job in the escort business, and not for joy of regular sex.

There was a sense of guilt of having lost something having so many sex partners when you were young. So whatever was supposed to be communicated in union with someone was lost. When sex if used right was like a prayer.

Adriana L. Trevino


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Programmed Trades

There has been rising number of senseless robots within institutions. In business. In government. Over the last 20 years. Actual robots, insensitive to the historically marginalized population within the traditions. And all the auto-transports, where no one had to move, or to think. And everyone just wanted a cellphone. With a camera to record it all.

In a world with oh so little physical exertion. Moneyball. Scouting through statistics. Senseless robots. Doing unbelievable damage. All the auto-transports, where no one had to move, or to think. With so much thoughtless damage.

In Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, Daniel Pink talked about the context of work that makes so many people passive and inert. And he discussed awakening a validated sense of autonomy and purpose at certain companies of its workers. Changing the context of the real sense of workers. The five senses, and their desire to do things because they are fun and interesting. What William Blake described as the inlets of the soul. The five senses which lead us to something.

Daniel Pink said, “ In many ways, it is our context that makes us passive and inert.”

“But if the context is changed, I think all of us can awaken that real sense, that scientifically validated sense, of autonomy and purpose and the desire to do things because they are fun and interesting.”

Programmed traders on Wall Street. TARP money, to prevent injury? In a world with oh so many injuries but so little physical exertion. Senseless robots, doing unbelievable damage. To human freedom. To economic systems. With the missing human element on Wall Street. With bankers. All the programmed trading. And the missing self-belief of trades. Confidence and self-confidence. Or not. As belief was lost. In this age of diversity. With so much conformity.

As the collective voice of institutions went faint. In a world with oh so little physical exertion, the purpose of education was to study to understand the dominant voices and prevailing ideas within the world’s religions, to change the institutions. The now emerging voices about the experiences of the historically marginalized population within the traditions. In an era of expectations about exciting movement for theological and institutional change, so labor movements died.

And so that Passover instruction, year after year. About eating the lamb. “In proportion to the number of persons who partake of it.”

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Troubadours

A troubadour was out the window. Walking by my place. Energetically strumming a guitar. I could not hear the sound. But how could you not stare and wonder about the sounds? And who he was doing this for? Wondering about his direction in the neighborhood and what he was singing about.

My reactions to this scene was a feeling that this was 1969. When other youth his age had, with so much potential, so much to say. And the direction where they took the potential. In such a vastly changing world. But in a world that had little changed. Except there was now such little sound of protest by the young about the situation of the world. Of the wars. Of the injustice.

Little protest except by a “journalist” like Dawn Zuppelli. The hackers of the world that had replaced the honest protesters of 1968. Of 1969. Of 1970. The world of hackers. It was a week after my computer caught a virus. Dawn Zuppelli is a journalist, last August with Rochester IndyMedia. Long after the Republican National Convention has left St. Paul, after someone had read a posting here dated September 4, 2008, I read yesterday her Facebook page which lists her interests in the IndyMedia website as well as AK Press, which is currently promoting the 1st North American Anarchist Studies Network Conference.

Too many journalist were like baseball players. Like David Ortiz. You wondered what was inside. Who was to be trusted. Which ones were honest.

Troubadours energetically strumming guitars and singing . These guys seemed to have set out, unconditionally, not held down by conventional thinking. A work of art, a song, a response to the times. From an artist’s imagination comes original art, important precisely because it does not start out with clear knowledge.

It was why music and the arts were sacred. As was honest journalism, written at the start without clear knowledge, looking for the reasons, offering an explanation on why something happened.

Journalism called forth the same need for honesty that politics was supposed to. That troubadours used to bring. Artists, in search of a point to view. Learning to play an instrument. Until you could do your own version of a song. Until you gave voice to a new rendition. Learning a personal viewpoint from lives experiences. Presenting the new sounds of protest by the young about the situation of the world. Of health care. Of the wars. Of the injustice. A troubadour in search of his own identity, a clear sense of identity that work for him/her. In the search for meaning each day.



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The Race for the Cure

Enhancements. Some women paid for them. It really did not happen amidst the poor. They had other things to worry about. Enhancement might attract the attention of a richer man. Time would tell of the depth of a relationship. Not many people really cared about those enhancements. Unless you were paying the plastic surgeon for the reconstruction. Or unless it was your daughter.

There are forces apparent on a generation schooled in the era of moral relativism. In business, in sports. Listen to the quotes on Manny Ramirez, posted on MLB.com.

Washington General Manager Manny Acta: “It is sad because this guy is going to get his name tainted forever.”

Oakland manager Bob Geren: “This is an unfortunate thing to happen, but the rules are very clear.”

Giants catcher Bengie Molina: “I’m not anybody to judge anybody. I’m not going to judge Manny.”

Cincinnati manager Dusty Baker: “Fifty is a long time. And that’s really going to hurt the Dodgers. And it is going to hurt his reputation. I just hate it that another star goes down.”

Philadelphia manager Charlie Manuel, Ramirez’s former hitting coach in the Cleveland Indian organization: “I’m kind of sad about that. But I don’t know what to say about that. I’m sad. I saw him when he was in rookie ball.”

The cost of enhancements. The moral relativism.

I love Charlie Manuel. Even before today. Since he was a rookie in Minnesota. Since those days, he has seen the world. The poverty. He knows how poor a kid like Manny was. In either the Dominican or in the slums of New York. But Manny is now 37. He has made his millions.

The world should be sad and disappointed. Over what he is doing to his own body. And OUTRAGED over cheating. The baseball world should wake up to the meaning of what is going on, in a game that has become a living science experiment. It was like the world of spies and counter-spies. Who do you trust among these players? Any of them? And why am I watching this? Why am I watching these experiments in human growth hormones mingle with the natural athletes?

It was not just about enhancements. Not when the game was a competition. Not when the game was about the past and the future. That was the selfishness of either an uneducated group of users or this entire generation schooled in the era of moral relativism. These graduates asked not to be judged. Like the Giant catcher.

Speaking about a post on MLB.com. and the cost of enhancements, all this was going on as newspapers were dying. MLB.com is paying a writer to travel with the team. In the case of the Dodgers, one of only two daily “beat” writers. Beat writers who used to follow a team from coast to coast, to bring you a sense of the heartbeat of the game, and the pulse of the players. In a day when there was, in my sense, a bit of heart disease in the game, based upon these quotes.

The day was coming soon when the game of baseball itself was gonna need a heart transplant. If anybody even cared, after watching this generation of players. But in the words of Sonny and Cher, “and the Beat Goes On.” The beat after the Mitchell Report. But without the “beat” writers who have not really been given access to this modern era of players. Without the “beat” writers who never really have brought the story of steroid use to the public over the last 15 years. And I sure did not expect MLB.com beat writers to reveal the transparency of a team. There seemed to be a conflict of interest for what was once called publicists. With MLB.com paying writers to cover a team, with Major League Baseball forming their own network with their own announcers, who expected criticism, much less transparency. These “beat” writers, the true critics, had been, in the era of agents, denied real access to the modern players anyway. And about the time that steroid use started. The day was here where the organic player was in need a special place just like grocers put old-fashioned organic food in the grocery stores, and maybe would charge us more. If that was possible.

From one generation to the next, baseball has provided a language to communicate that there was a sense of transcendence about life greater than I. Baseball communicated that there was a connection between me and others. My teammates. To all who played the game. Like a religion, baseball was a spiritual experience in a world where people felt closer in ritual. Baseball was all about the depth of a relationship.

Hall of Famer Juan Marichal: “I was wrong thinking he was a pure, natural hitter and that he would never use anything that would help a player do better. I am very sad to hear a player of his caliber could be involved in such a thing. I consider it cheating the game to have a positive test.”

Rockies shortstop Troy Tulowitzki: “Him being out 50 games is huge for the Dodgers lineup. It takes the best player in the division out for 50 games. That gives us a little window of opportunity so hopefully we can take advantage of it.”

Those honest windows of opportunity in a game with a lot of deceit: welcome to baseball in the 21st century. It was truth being stranger than science fiction. Why am I watching these experiments in human growth hormones mingle with the natural athletes? When I had never wasted my time on science fiction.

Even in the era of moral relativism, those 10 Commandments never changed. The tenets of the past remained for the present and the future, without enhancements. The failure amidst all of this was in the teaching the graciousness of the game, the “gentle” part of “gentlemen,” to the souls of the young. Whether players had come from the PAC 8 colleges or the barrios of Latin America, in an age of diversity there should be lifelong banishment for steroid use. The Barry Bondses, the Roger Clemenses, the Manny Ramirezes

David Howman, director of the World Anti-Doping Agency: “It is regrettable that the sport does not identify substances involved in positive cases. Baseball needs to be transparent.”

A lack of transparency was what had caused the collapse last September on Wall Street, which did not happen over night. Ah the politics of the game which also now had limited transparency. So this was what had been taught to those guys who majored in sports administration.

George Bush had been the managing general partner of the Texas Rangers about the time Bud Selig came to power in the current system. That current system under Selig with no distinction to the American League or the National League. The narrative of the story of baseball under Bud has been an acquiescence to the player’s association, a looking the other way, with a lack of regulation. From the commissioner, to the general manager, the managers, the umpires, everyone was making too much money and looking the other way while cheaters just kept on cheating. It sounded a lot like Wall Street. So why was I watching this? I would not compete myself again a cheater for recreation, after I did it all week on Wall Street.

I was a Juan Marichal fan growing up. Reading MLB.com, he seems one of the few people who could connect the sense of transcendence about baseball, about what he did in his life, that was greater than himself. Someone should tell Dusty Baker, this was more than about the Dodgers, or Manny’s reputation. The waters of free agency had made all of the guys just Prussian soldiers, going through the motions.

“And the Beat Goes On.” In 50 more games. In the polluted waters of free agency. It was a new era of globalization. When that local newspaper was owned from far away. When local politics was decided by political contributions from Hollywood. Or maybe from China. It was the era when the players came from afar, when an owner in Los Angeles was a parking lot owner in Boston. When scattered stockholders throughout the world were interested only in bottom lines. And no one really cared about anything except money.

Those enhancement might attract attention for a while, of those of us with money to spend on tickets. Until we looked at what was underneath it all.

Time would tell of the depth of a relationship. Time would be the judge of the depth of love of the game of kids who grew up amidst all of this.

The Race for the Cure might be a new name for the entire decade of baseball, not that division competition in the National League West. Those enhancements following the last baseball strike had worked for a while. Until someone actually figured to look underneath it all. Now that we all knew what was under the current game, it was time to change this unending behavior.

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