Thursday, September 29, 2011

Just Sayin'

Age has had quite a deleterious effect on my memory. It appears to me that last season's worth of episodes of Two & A Half Men followed the same trajectory that the previous seven season's worth had: lots of jokes about Charlie being a male whore, Alan being a cuckolded douche and Jake being a lazy, doomed to fail teenager. Margaret and I watch the show. It has never been rocket science. But is is good for a little "unsnap the skull cap" laughter.

However judging by what has popped up on-line all over the place in response to the first two shows of the Ashton Kutcher era on the show, it appears as if my recollection of the quality of the first eight seasons of it is erroneous. Apparently I failed to appreciate that we had been watching Shakespeare in the Park with Charlie Sheen channeling his inner Olivier. Silly man am I. Silly, stupid man.

The baseball season is heading into the post-season with the ALDS starting Friday night for the Yankees at the Stadium. A couple of items off of the diamond caught my attention the other day. Given the time of year, sharing them here seemed appropriate.

I am not an NBA fan. I enjoy playing a number of sports. I enjoy watching many different types of sports too. NBA basketball is not among them. Ernie Johnson is the face of Turner Sports for its NBA coverage. So, through no fault of his own, his is not a voice I hear often or a face I see with any regularity. Thus, I was surprised to read somewhere earlier this week that he is one of the play-by-play men TBS intended to use for its coverage of the ALDS and NLDS. I say "intended to use". The piece I read noted that Johnson had asked TBS to take him off of its broadcast team. His reason is certainly legitimate and very sad:

In a statement, Johnson said his son Michael, 23, "has muscular dystrophy and has been in intensive care for the last two weeks and is expected to remain hospitalized for several more weeks. At this time, my job is to be with Michael."

Ernie Johnson's perspective is refreshing. For him and for TBS, there shall be other Octobers. Here's to hoping that there shall be others as well for Michael. And happier, less stressful Octobers for the Johnson family.

Opening Day seems as if it was about 1,000,000 years ago. Especially so for the San Francisco Giants and their fans. The Giants began the season as defending World Series Champions. They ended it as an also-ran. The Giants began the defense of their title on the road against their long-time rival the Los Angeles Dodgers. Devout Giants fan Bryan Stow did something he had apparently never done before. He ventured to Dodger Stadium to watch a Giants-Dodgers game. And he did so while wearing a Giants cap.

Bryan Stow is not a kid. He is a man in his early 40's. He is a father of two. He is a first responder. By all accounts he did nothing to warrant the vicious beating he received in a stadium parking lot from several miscreant Dodgers fans. Stow was damn near beaten to death.

In the first week or so after the assault, the medical information that his family communicated to the public courtesy of the web site they created was less than positive. It seemed as if he would die or at the very least never regain any type of cognitive function. In baseball, it pays to remember that the season is a long one. Sometimes it is long enough for someone who gets off to a tough start to get his legs under him and finish strong.

Bryan Stow has - at least figuratively speaking - gotten his legs under him. On Monday his family's update on their web site was entitled "Magical". Do yourself a favor. Read the entry. And then remind yourself that while Willie the Shakes was one hell of a writer, he did not know all....

....Just sayin'.


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