Evolving Peace

A site that is progressing for the goal of everlasting peace within ourselves, our family, our friends, our country and our planet !

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Crashing with the Dream of Baseball

A plane crashed into a New York City building yesterday, and I could feel the energy of fear vibrating from the New York Area. It was over five years ago that the planes collided into the World Trade Center buildings. I am sure yesterday that many recalled those horrific events. Thankfully this was an accident, and only a few killed in this tragedy. But as in any accident there are always victims and to the families involved I wish them peace.

So I begin today reflecting on what has transpired. As the news surfaced of this event we were told that New York Yankees picture Cory Lidle had been the pilot of the plane. Crashing his plane into a NYC building just days after the high priced Yankees were eliminated from Major League Baseball playoffs. Growing up in the NYC area I was a fan of the Yankees, I remember when Yankee's catcher Thurman Munson's plane crash and of course the events of 9/11. All those things have changed and now in Vermont my whole world spins on an alternate path,

Baseball, the great American pastime, takes center stage over most people's lives. I am not writing a critique from an outsider's perspective but as one who once was consumed on its enormous passion. Days of my youth were filled mimicking Reggie Jackson hitting a home run into the right field upper deck of Yankee Stadium. I collected every Yankee player's card and read the box score religiously. The fabric of my childhood was so ingrained that I would sneak my portable radio under the covers and listen for Phil Rizzuto's famed "Holy Cow" announcement of some spectacular play. The sounds of baseball were the sounds of summer and youth.

Oh how innocent baseball could be to a child, but a deeper look will reveal another side. It was there that I learned from famed Billy Martin who boisterously kicked dirt on the umpire, Ricky Henderson egocentrically placing his records over the spirit of the team and mad power hungry George Steinbrenner hiring criminals to discredit Dave Winfield. Life rolled on in the baseball world, but as ticket prices soared, birth of a new dimension grew, multi-million dollar players. Baseball was no longer a game, but of entertainment and that is all it is.

After my childhood, I began to distance myself from baseball, concurrently the Yankees began to "suck." I ventured off into other passions, studying of history, political involvement and following of the last great American Circus, The Grateful Dead. I guess within my mind there was a desire to see things differently, and boy did I. The Dead brought about a new dimension of living, living for joy and ecstasy of the moment. It was there that I learned to think differently about life. What is the meaning of life and its purpose? Was it to be a child, then graduate college, get a job, get married, have kids and then die? No way, to me it's about living.

Along came a flip of the axis, and the Dead were no longer. Where was my utopian world, was I just living a dream of youth or was I living an alternative reality? Well, reluctantly I joined the world, and got a "real" job. Hey, the job was fun and it lasted for nine years, eight months and nine days. When I took the job my friends had a pool how long it would last, I choose one month. I worked with AAA as a travel consultant, and things were not that bad. I continually got to travel and play, while it looked like I had a respectable job. The pay was not good but I was fortunate to have some money already and was able to own my home. Here I was working a real job, living in my own home but a foreigner in my own home. Carefree living was not the case. I did not enjoy the world of shopping malls and television. The woods or the road is where I really felt I should be, but times slipped by.

Reflecting on this time, I remember a Star Trek Next Generation episode, where an alien creature known as the Borg had been threatening societies. The Borg is an alien collective that assimilates all individuals into its own being, removing any individualized consciousness. The Borgs only dialogue is to say "resistance is futile." I ask, what is to be within a society of the free? Well, to make a long story short I was absorbed into the collective. Life was not going where I wanted it to, but back to baseball.

Fortunately, at those times the Yankees climbed atop the baseball world and I was wrapped up in it again. I found something I could relate with others in the American suburban dream. I could go to work, go to the bar or to family and baseball was a safe topic. Why not, it's America's pastime? Although, I consciously strived to keep my individuality, baseball gave me the opportunity to still live like a kid. I went to game after game, watched pitch after pitch and was crushed after a loss. The Yankees were the kings, the Red Sox and Mets were my mortal enemies. Socially accepted attacks on foes were the norm. But hey, I could talk to people about baseball, oh yeah and it was fun washing it down with $7 beers.

Things felt great, I would go to many games. I knew the beer vendors and bartenders and plenty of other characters. I was high with euphoria for the game. Then as the planes crashed into the World Trade Center and the buildings came crashing down, my life began spiraling out of control. As the country, began to change so did I. As our nation collectively followed the President and supported acts of war, I broke out and searched for my true calling. I continued living the life, but I searched for ways of an escape. Resistance is not futile but a key to unlock the door. The doorway of my life was waiting to fly free.

I have seen the stark madness of our times, on the brink of insanity a culture wasting away in its selfishness. The culture of greed and materialism leads to a path of destruction. Yesterday's news about the death of Corey Lidle brings me to the path of today. Although, I have not followed baseball for years, I can hear the NY sports radio talk condemning the multi-million dollar Yankees for failing to advance in the playoffs. Players like Corey Lidle being played as scapegoats for all those living in their shallow lives. Lost in the shuffle of madness, is the humanity. The players are just players; the teams are just teams, its entertainment, nothing more. It comes down to it the Yankees, Red Sox or Mets have nothing to do with your life. As the death of Corey Lidle comes about I hope that we can see that he was just a man, and that is all. May he in rest in peace and we all live free within our own lives.


Exiled in Vermont

PS: The Revolution will not be televised.

Exiled in Vermont


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