Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Opening Day

A quick detour today, if you'll indulge me. The yoga stuff is coming, I promise, but taking longer than I'd anticipated. Someone who doesn't much know his ass from his elbow needs to be careful if he's talking about human anatomy...

For the non-Bostonians, today is perhaps the second most important day on our fair city's calendar- the home opener of the Boston Red Sox. (Patriots Day/Marathon Monday, six days from now, wins the number one spot.) A secular holy day. (he says, sitting in a windowless office with no radio) I literally can't stumble three feet here in collegeville today without hitting someone with a Sox World Series champion hat, or a Varitek t-shirt, or a Shilling jersey on. And it's not just here, it's anywhere within fifty miles. I guarantee that 90% of them won't be within two miles of Fenway today- we just care that much.

I remember in high school our eighth period teacher would hold our attention by promising a score in five minutes. (This was an all-male school, and I did the same thing during the playoffs when I taught there) Last summer in Key West I was approached more than once by very scraggly guys who'd obviously been drinking since, oh, 1978, just because they saw a Sox hat and wanted to know last night's score. There have been literally millions of trees pulped talking about Red Sox fever, and still they'll never completely do it justice. And this year, with a new 1A ace in Beckett, a new leadoff hitter (Coco Crisp- how can you not love that name?) and a promising young closer (Paplebon), we think we can win it all again. (Of course, they could send nine legless monkeys out there, and we'd think they could win it all. At least for a week, then we'd start griping about the manager...)

A few years ago, I wrote a suite of music called (still tentatively, until I can come up with something catchier) The Baseball Suite. Somewhere I have a recording of "Opening Day", actually the second number. ("Spring Training" comes first, of course) I should dig it out and post it, just for the occasion. Because today is Opening Day, Boston is buzzing, and at least for a few hours anything is possible.

Postscript 1: Key West reminded me of something I've been meaning to get off my chest- I found out that the current edition of MTV's the Real World is set in Key West. To call anything in Key West "The Real World", even on MTV, is idiocy. It insults the real world (wherever that is), and it insults Key West. Key West is many things, but the real world certainly ain't one of them. More on this after I start to visit Key West again.

Postscript 2: Dave Douglas' new quintet album, Meaning and Mystery was released today via his webstore, and I'm looking forward to hearing it. Donnie McCaslin replaces Chris Potter in the group, which should make for an interesting change- certainly not an upgrade, more a Youkalis for JT Snow shift- one gives you more glove and oomph, one more times on base. Okay that's a forced analogy- they're both great, very different players. And please, don't ask me which one has a better OPS...

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