2007-11-01 / Editorial


By Robert Morton-Ranney

Two innings into Game Three, nothing was happening.

My wife and I decided to take advantage of the lull by getting a head start on our latest mail-subscription DVD, Tess. As in, Of The D'Urbervilles. Figured we'd spread the depression over a few nights.

She's just meeting what's-hismoustache. We can tell by the cut of his suits that he is up to no good.

Quick check of the score. Things still moving at the speed of molasses in the Rockies in October.

Back to Tess. She's walking home from a dance with her coindentured farm workers when the moustache offers her a ride. No, Tess! Don't get on the horse!

Why can't other people see what we know to be true?

I confess I'm not a baseball regular. Football, yes. But when it comes to watching America's Game, just call me Mr. October.

The game loses its zest if it seems like it's a living example of status quo, knowing little about the strategy of infield or outfield player placement. And once a given three-quarters-of-a-dozen innings begins to take on a certain character, I expect it to stay that way.

Tess arrives at the milk farm. This is pretty slow, too.

Back to the game, by now in the fourth inning. 6-0 Red Sox. How could this have happened so quickly?

So, we leave the game on for a while, to pick up on the excitement.

It stays at six-zip.

It keeps staying at six-zip. We call it a night, wake up the next morning and . . . it didn't stay sixzip!

Okay, I know. If I want to see everything that happens in the game, I have to watch the whoooooooooollllllle game.

But it's so long.

Baseball must follow that old 80-20 rule. You know, 80 percent of the important stuff happens during 20 percent of the time.

I always hated that rule. I have often wondered what it is about that 20 percent that couldn't be reproduced in the other 80.

But it's true. At work or at home or out with friends, the really good stuff happens just part of the time. Trouble is you can never be sure just exactly which part it's going to be.

And the function of the rest of the time, excruciatingly often, seems to be simply to hang around until the big things kick in. To pay attention even when there's almost nothing to pay attention to.

Game 4 just started. Ellsbury doubles. Moves to third on Pedroia's ground out. Scores on Big Papi's single! It's going to be exciting now . . . No, wait. Manny hits into a double play. Rockies three and out (sorry, that's football isn't it), I mean, three outs. It's staying the same again. Top of the second, bottom of the second, top of the third . . .

Maybe I should check on what's happening with Tess.

But I might miss something.

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