Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Two Topics I Refuse To Discuss

Well, here it is, the third week of September, and the Fall season officially begins in a week. I’m sure the most pressing thought on your mind right now is this: Hey Bill, how come this year you didn’t write your annual summer column about the Red Sox?

Thank you for noticing. For the last decade I have written at least one column every summer about the Red Sox. But not this year. This year I refuse to write even a single word about those miserable bums.

I mean, really, you have the third highest payroll in all of Major League baseball, a lineup filled with (so-called) All Stars, and the addition of a couple of new (so-called) power hitters. So you’d think you’d be able to knock in some runs and stay above .500 and have a shot at winning the mediocre American League East division, right?

But no! Instead, you can’t even hit your weight, you leave men in scoring position by the boatload, and you either swing and miss at pitches in the dirt or take strike three right down the middle. And your pitching staff is a bunch of Venus DeMilos. So you plummet to the cellar of the division early in the season and stay there month after month after month.

I ask you, is that a baseball team to be proud of, a team about which a summer column should be written? No! And that’s why I refuse to write a single word this year about the Boston Dead Sox. (Um, not counting the previous 169 words, of course.)

Another pressing thought that I’m sure is on your mind is this: Hey Bill, how come you didn’t write your annual summer column about golf?

Again, thank you for noticing. Every summer I’ve written at least one column about my love/hate relationship with the game of golf. But this year I refuse to write a single word about golf. Look, I think golf is a fabulous sport. The drama and the tension and the excitement are really amazing. (OK, I hear you. Golf is an acquired taste. I also get excited watching paint dry.)

Golf is truly fascinating — when someone else is playing it. Watching a major tournament on TV or watching in person at the Travelers Championship is a terrific experience. The professionals can do astounding things with that little white ball. But middle-aged schlubs like me should not be allowed to touch a golf club. It really should be against the law.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, and expecting different results. By that definition, golf is insanity. I don’t play a lot, maybe ten times per summer, but every time I play, I really think to myself, “This is the day. This is the time when everything comes together and I finally strike the ball crisply and have the best round of my life.” Then, five hours later, after tallying up a 106, I toss my bag into the back of my car with disgust, mutter a bunch of four-letter words (the word “golf” prominent among the profane terms), and sincerely ask myself, “What the blank is my blankin’ problem? Why do I bother to play this blankin’ game?”

And that’s why I refuse to write a single word this year about the game of golf. (Um, not counting the previous 236 words, of course.) 

Now that we’ve put those topics to rest, we can focus on another pressing thought that’s on your mind: Hey Bill, if it turns out to be another Clinton vs. Bush presidential election next year, should we jump off a tall building or jump off a bridge?

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