Sounds Good on Paper

Yesterday was one of those days that you have every now and again where everything just seems right with the world. You are able to somehow combine the things that you love with the ones that you love. After spending several hours at Chase Field at the Arizona Diamondbacks Fan Fest it was time for us to bid farewell to the stadium that we won’t see for another 7 weeks (that pains me just typing that). Trina and the kids had a difficult time pulling me away from the Chase Field concourse. Trina firmly believes that the team will have some repair work to do since she is convinced that I left fingernail marks along the floor as the family forcefully dragged me out of the stadium. I think she is exaggerating just a little, I cut my fingernails so they could not have left a mark. I did notice that the ends of my fingers are sore today and I seem to have cement burns on the tops of my fingers. And suggestions that I cried like a baby when we left are exaggerated. I wasn’t crying I just had something in my eye. But as we were walking across the Gila River Casino Plaza something interesting happened.

As I had previously reported, the Diamondbacks saw the largest crowd in their history attend Fan Fest. The attendance totals were estimated to be above 10,000 people. The stadium and the plaza was filled with people and there were lines to many of the activities. So with this sea of humanity, the odds of what happened next were significantly more remote than having a Diamondbacks player hit for the cycle. From out of nowhere a man carrying a small notebook appeared from amidst the crowd and stood in front of me and the kids. He asked if I had a couple of minutes and if I would be willing to answer a few questions. I thought perhaps this was the gentleman’s first trip to Chase Field and I am always willing to help a baseball fan particularly a Diamondbacks fan. I agreed to help him. It was at this point he identified himself as Scott Bordow, a reporter for the East Valley Tribune newspaper. He began by questioning me about baseball and whether all of the steroid rumors and innuendo bothered me. I politely gave me opinion that I don’t believe all that I read nor do I think that all players took performance enhancing substances. While I am not naive to think it is not happening, I just choose to focus on the game and not necessarily on the players. I stand by my conviction that it is the perfect game which unfortunately is played by imperfect people. I went on to explain that it is my responsibility as a fan and more importantly as a parent to teach my kids about the game but not to let them get caught up on the players. It is events such as Fan Fest that give the kids an opportunity to see the players off the field to understand that they are not that much different than their own father; they just happened to have one of the greatest jobs on earth. They get to play baseball while dad gets to write software and play on the computer. My kids would be the first to tell you that I am far from perfect but that overall I probably do ok unless I get on them to clean their room or do their homework. They would never look at me as someone to be revered or placed on a pedestal to be worshiped. The same should be for baseball players. They are gifted individuals who have great athletic gifts but they still struggle in their lives just like we do in ours. The game of baseball will live on from generation to generation and will survive despite the weaknesses of the players currently employed by the game. So while we may be dismayed or indignant at the thoughts of Brian McNamee or Roger Clemens, they do not represent the game. They may have been playing pieces but their lack of high moral character will not diminish my views of baseball.

I am sure that my answers were probably not exactly what Mr. Bordow had in mind when he stopped a guy and his family. After talking with him for a while we parted ways and with my family in tow I went on to other activities. I commented to Trina about how odd that whole episode was and we both wondered aloud what might become of that brief encounter. We didn’t have to wait long, in the Sunday edition of the East Valley Tribune Scott Bordow wrote a piece entitled Season can’t get here soon enough that appeared on the sports page. Within the piece were several comments attributed to me. My kids of course were extremely impressed. For a moment I thought perhaps my comments were wrong, maybe my kids did put me on a pedestal to be looked up to. Then of course I returned to reality thanks to my sweet daughter Whitney who put everything into perspective, “Dad, this is so cool! My name and my age is in the newspaper!” Yeah I was right the first time, as far as my family is concerned, I am just a guy from section 112 row 8 who is obsessed with baseball.

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