Monday, July 06, 2009

All-American 4th of July

For our 4th, Dad surprised us with tickets to a minor league baseball game.

What could possibly be closer to an all-American celebration than watching two teams play ball in a game that lasted 5 hours? It was my first experience at a minor league game and I was pleasantly surprised at how enjoyable it was. The commercialism at the major league games is sometimes disconcerting. The absurd amount of money the players make, their oft-publicized drug abuses (so that they can make record hitters, home runs, or whatever), and the way we have to be entertained while being entertained is often discouraging.
However, there is an escape from major league theatrics in the form of the minor leagues.
A baseball game in every sense of the word, it was pure Americana at it's best. The field was small, there wasn't any absurd entertainment (wow, we actually watched a game being played) and the players make next to nothing, which leads me to believe that if they play without a big salary, then they must play because they love the game.*

Kathryn (above) and Ellie (below) taking it all in.

zzz... Ellie konks out, much like I wanted to do around the 7th inning

A lot of baseball greats have played on this field: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, Jackie Robinson, and Joe DiMaggio to name a few.

A spectacular fireworks show followed the game.

Naturally, all photos by Landon

*Disclaimer: I don't believe sports players should make next-to-nothing, only that the millions the major league guys make doesn't seem to inspire them to actually play well. They will make money regardless of how they perform, while minor league players often "pass a hat" to give money to the guy who scored for the home team, making these players to be seemingly genuine lovers of the sport.

Monday Morning Random Thoughts

Everyone is advising Sarah Palin right now. Just look at all the op-eds written over the weekend, and it doesn't seem to be slowing down anytime soon. If Ms. Palin quit office to get away from criticism, she only incited it all the more from conservatives and liberals alike. One can't help but feel a little sorry for the once upon a time, would-be political star. Like so many other celebrities, she was picked up by the media because of her newness, only to be chewed, swallowed, and spat out again and again for the duration of her brief political career. Some stars relish being taken apart and followed everywhere because it puts their face into yours through magazine covers and TMZ, while some of them just quietly court the paparazzi and die-hard reporters. Some try to ignore or maybe hide from them. And some, like Ms. Palin, just give up in the face of the feeding frenzy. You can't blame her as much as simply feel sorry for her - and be reminded why it is hard, very hard to be a fish swimming upstream when everyone is pushing you back downstream.

If Ms. Palin is reading any of the advice so freely offered lately, it is my hope she reads these two pieces. And if she doesn't, maybe you should, just in case you ever thought about running for political office. :)

Saturday, July 04, 2009

July 4th

Happy Independence Day!