(9:30PM EST – promoted by Nightprowlkitty)
A fews days ago, buhdydharma had an excellent essay detailing how the Republicans had screwed the country during the Bush years. But one aspect was left out — the most important one from my point of view. As I write this, my beloved Minnesota Twins lead baseball’s American League Central Division by 1/2 game over the evil Chicago White Sox. The Twins exemplify all that is good and pure about baseball. They play good defense; they bunt to sacrifice runners to the next base; their pitchers don’t walk anybody; they win with young players brought up from their minor league system rather than bidding for free agents; and they do it all with a payroll that is but a fraction of what the Yankees spend.
But the Republican party is conspiring to ruin the Twins’ drive for the American League pennant. Because their convention will be held in St. Paul from Sept. 1-4, the Twins are forced to embark on an unheard of 14-day road trip: four games against the American League’s leading Los Angeles Angels, then three games at Seattle, four games at Oakland, and finally three games at Toronto. For those of you who may not be baseball fans, this is a BIG deal. Minnesota has a 46-23 record playing home games, but just a 28-31 record playing road games. Having to play 14 consecutive road games may well ruin the Twins’ season through no fault of their own.
You might think this is trivial. But in my empty, meaningless life, the Twins’ victories let me succeed vicariously through their unlikely triumphs. At the tender age of eight, my first trip to a big city was to the Twin Cities to watch a Minnesota baseball game against the White Sox (and not in the ridiculous Metrodome, but the quaint Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington). What a glorious adventure! After we parked the car and started walking toward the stadium entrance, it began to rain unmercifully and soaked us to the bone. Having no extra clothes, we returned to the car and drove around until we found an open laundromat. Then we took turns sitting naked in the car as one person went in and dried a batch of clothes. We got back to the stadium and into our seats by the start of the second inning. My devotion to the Twins was born on this day.
(the old Metropolitan Stadium — now the site of the Mall Of America in Bloomington, MN)
As with all Twins fans of the day, it was my life’s dream to see Harmon Killebrew play. Killebrew is a member of baseball’s Hall of Fame, and made the All-Star team eleven times during his career. We were also treated to seeing an up-and-coming Rod Carew, who also made it to the Hall of Fame. But unfortunately the White Sox won the game that day. It didn’t matter — seeing my first major league baseball game was a thrill I haven’t forgotten to this day.
And yet the Republicans seem hell-bent on destroying my dream of the Twins returning to the World Series, to add to their glorious victories in 1987 over the St. Louis Cardinals and 1991 over the Atlanta Braves. Instead, the Republican convention is practically handing the Central Division title to the Chicago White Sox, best known as baseball’s most notorious cheaters for the Black Sox scandal of 1919, where several players conspired to throw games in the World Series against the Cincinnati Reds in exchange for payoffs from gamblers. This is typical of the White Sox, who consistently piss on the purist type on baseball favored by the Twins. Most of, if not all of, the White Sox are (I assume) well-known Republicans.
I accept that Republicans will put forth an agenda of destructive and unwinnable wars; racist and/or bigoted social programs; economic programs to consolidate wealth in the hands of the rich ruling class; and programs to deplete our natural resources in favor of corporate interests. But now they’re going to fuck with baseball? And specifically with my Minnesota Twins? This means war.