Monday, August 10, 2009

Six degrees

TaliDan here. Follow me through the leap....I was watching some serious beisbol this weekend with my pops. Mostly, I watched the Red Sox go scoreless for 3 days, I watched the Cubs and the Sox try their darndest to imitate the Bad News Bears, and I watched David Ortiz try and explain away his steroid accusations. The highlight was on Sunday Night, when ESPN invited in Louis Tiant, former pitcher for the Twins, Tribe, Red Sox and Yankees. As a fan I always enjoy listening to the old timers reflect on the game. Tiant threw like 173 pitches in a World Series game. Upon the comment that "they don't make them like they used to", Tiant said in effect that the game has changed. If he were to pitch today, he would probably be limited to 100 pitches too. That started us talking about the state of the game. My dad noticed that after every good play, the players wander underneath the dugout back to the locker room. "What are they doing, getting a steak dinner?" my dad asked. We started talking about players that we liked growing up, and I said for me it was easy...Pete Rose. Why? Well for one, he played the game the right way (I'll leave his gambling habits aside). After all, he was nicknamed Charlie Hustle. He was a man's man. He plowed into catcher Ray Fosse in 1970 to give his team a 5-4 victory. It was an all-star game.
1:30 into the following if you don't believe me.

Ok so back to 6 degrees. Pete Rose was banned from baseball by A. Bart Giamatti. Bart died a week after Rose agreed to resign. Bart's son, Paul Giamatti is one heck of an actor. Gals may like him as the cuddly, yet neurotic sidekick in Sideways. Men like him in Shoot 'Em Up.

See Louis Tiant, my Dad, me, Pete Rose, Paul Giamatti (ok so I just wanted some gratuitous violence in here to signify my rage) and Bart Giamatti. Most people may have heard of Bart because of either Paul or Pete.

But he was also President of Yale. He had some scathing words for the Moral Majority in his "Letter to Yale Freshman 1981". His words here are less known, but far from being less relevant today. In sum: ..."conservative groups are shredding the spiritual fabric of our society and are intent on destroying diversity of opinion...They threaten through political pressure or public denunciation whoever dares to disagree with their authoritarian positions. They would sweep before them anyone who holds a different opinion". Also..."Peddlers of coercion pushing for uncompromising attitudes that are dangerous, malicious nonsense with a goal to DIVIDE IN THE NAME OF PATRIOTISM".

Keep his words in mind when watching the squashing of honest debate at these town hall meetings. 1981 meet 2009.

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