Home > Uncategorized > Quarantine Diaries – Day 115 (“Footbaw!”)

Quarantine Diaries – Day 115 (“Footbaw!”)

It’s summer and there is no baseball. Normally we’d be near the all-star break by now. Pennant races would be pretty set. Locally we’d be deep into a Rail Riders playoff push….it’s always a good time at the stadium. Having a Triple-AAA team here is badass.

Cold beers ($7 each? Life is a sacrifice son…we do what we must do….) and the warm sun and wandering around the stadium perimeter, people watching. Or getting a nice stretch of dry weather and settling in for a few night games….perhaps with some fireworks to cap the night off. The sounds of baseball. The organist punctuating things. The crack of the bats. The thud of a 90+ mph fastball. The vendors…….selling hard. The world slows down for those few hours…..and you’re content to watch young men play a little boy’s game. And play it with such effortless grace that you’re half tempted to think that you could get out there too. If not for the fact that you are neither young nor effortlessly graceful. Baseball punctuates both the start and the end of summer…..and this year we have neither. It’s just days drifting past….anonymously. Baseball is usually everywhere. The TV. The radio. The local parks. All ages. And now, there is nothing but silence. And I’ve had months to get used to it and I still can’t. There will be no boys of summer this year. And there will be no Mister October either. Until this returns, the world just seems even more crooked on its axis. Summer with no baseball is like a bar with no beer.

footballCollege football appears doomed. Thirty seven players for the North Carolina Tar Heels have tested positive for Covid-19, which is the type of grim warning that dumb people like Betsy Devos so often ignore. If you told ACC and SEC fans that football could commence only if every man, woman, and child south of the Mason Dixon line wore a mask, they’d be sleeping in them and stomping the living hell out of any Ken or Karen caught on video in supermarkets crying about their “rahts”. Because “FOOTBAW!!”

But it’s a little late for all that now. This thing has gotten away from all of us, and now that we’re being forced to drop-kick our kids back into classrooms, I assume it’s gonna get even worse. Strap yourselves in.

What happens when a teacher tests positive? Do all the students quarantine? What happens if a student test positive? Do all his or her classmates quarantine? What about their teachers? What happens if I get sick….and my kid has been to class. Because of me, does my kid have to quarantine? What about her classmates? What about her teachers? If a teacher gets sick, and was around other teachers, do they have to quarantine as well? If teachers get sick in large numbers….what then?

If our nation was being run by adults, we would have answers to these questions. But it’s not so we don’t. It’ll be wild chaos come the fall. And we’re all gonna be locked back up. With no football. Because of course the NFL is doomed too. It’s gonna be a long winter.

In the fall/winter my Saturday’s generally consisted of me waking and putting on College Gameday on ESPN. That ran until Noon. Then the first game of the day would commence. Then the marquee 3pm games would be next. Usually the SEC. Then the early evening games…with staggered starts so you could flip back and forth and not miss any endings. Then the national prime time game…..followed by the West Coast games that would kick off around 11pm. So it might be 2am before I’d move for any reason other than to pee or to refresh my beverage or to scream that Notre Dame lost already and were thus eliminated from the national championship playoff before labor day. Or perhaps jump in the shower during a half-time featuring the same highlights I’ve seen 17 times already. Of course Sundays work the same with the 3 NFL games, one of which will feature my Steelers losing to a team they were heavily favored to beat. Another double digit hour shift. And let’s not even talk about the Thursday night college game, or Monday Night Football. Because….well…..ok…..you can toss them in there as well. The only thing that might get me off-track is playoff baseball. In which case I’ve been known to watch one game on the TV with another on my laptop and another on my phone. At the same time. And to text my nephew to get steady reports on a fourth. It ain’t easy, but it sure is fun. I think Jerry Lee Lewis said that.

And now, all that is gone. And like Henry Hill in Goodfellas, I get to live my fall and winter “like a regular schnook…”

These are strange days, Bubba. Strange days indeed. We all gotta fill the voids with something. It makes sense that maybe we could start by being better to each other.

But we haven’t been very sensible lately.

In a bit…


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