Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Fantasyland

I've heard that the L.A. Times is in trouble, but I didn't realize that it was so bad that they had fired everyone under the age of 90:
And in Baseball Heaven, we have certain codes of conduct, strictly enforced, though all the players pretty much abide by them. The codes of conduct include bad haircuts and weird beards. For example, have you noticed the Rays' dugout? Like a gang of car thieves. You can't go purely by appearances, sure, but how else are we supposed to judge strangers? And they don't get much stranger than the Rays . . .

. . . In Baseball Heaven, hot dogs are a buck and peanuts (double-baggers) 50 cents. kids who show up at the gate with straight A's on their report cards get in free. They can bring their dogs . . . In Baseball Heaven, the wind is always blowing out yet there's a no-hitter going into the sixth. Drysdale is on the mound and Mays is in center. Clemente is in right, of course, hands on his knees, daring the ball to come to him. In the outfield, there's a sign that reads: "Hit this spot, win a suit."
The thing is, I agree that most of the stuff the guy describes would be wonderful. When you put it all together in a nostalgia-dripping column like that, however, you simply come off like a crotchety old coot. It's a column that can only be written as a result of its author staring at the television for Game 3 or 4, and hating what he was seeing.

I said earlier that I think this has been a pretty bad World Series. And it has in some ways. But it isn't so bad that people should feel the need to escape to fantasyland and revel in a baseball that probably never was.

8 comments:

Amos said...

This is why newspapers are dying. This kind of column does not bring in readers.

Peter said...

I'm a pretty conservative guy, but I cringed when I read that a team with so many prominent black and hispanic players looks "like a gang of car thieves".

dennis said...

Baseball Heaven...no free agency until you've played for 12 years. Awesome. Why not just get rid of free agency altogether? We'll call it Baseball Plantation instead. (Inflammatory, I know, but it's a really dumb column.)

Roger Moore said...

In Baseball Heaven, there's accountability for columnists. When they spew tripe like this, they get fired so we don't have to read it anymore.

Pete Toms said...

I read some of it but didn't finish it. I'm so sick of these columns and there are always plenty of them. The "everything that's wrong with baseball" rants. I'm sick of this revisionist nostalgia about the golden age. Baseball is ( or was the past handful of years, I think it's popularity is in decline ) more popular than ever. All this 80's pop culture baseball romanticism, Durham, Field of Dreams, The Natural misled a lot of middle class white guys as to what baseball actually was like.

As for the LA Times, enemy of baseball bloggers everywhere - Sam Zell - is the owner.

I could nitpick as well, but baseball is a great, great game.

Daniel said...

Without clicking on the link I know it has to be Plaschke. You probably didn't even need to tell me it was the LA Times. That guy is a hack. I hope FJM has some free time today.

Craig Calcaterra said...

Sorry Daniel. It's not him. Or Simers. It's some guy named Chris Erskine, who is a graphics editor and, from what I can tell, some sort of lifestyles columnist.

Daniel said...

Really???? Crazy - that sounds exactly like something Plaschke would write. Maybe whatever disease he has is contagious. My tongue-in-cheek apologies to Bill.