Dessert CAN Make You Happy

Fortune Cookie.jpgDear readers, let us all agree that the game is the game.  It’s balls and strikes, it’s first to third, it’s infield shifts and 3-0 green lights.  From Baltimore to Fresno to Okinawa to Calgary, baseball is a game.  Or rather, baseball is the game.

Yet we follow it for the people.

Without the story lines, Kirk Gibson’s homerun is just another homerun, Derek Jeter’s dive into the third row is just a catch, Adam Wainwright’s curve to get Inge swinging is simply, just a curve.  Stories make these plays so momentous, so glorious, so gut wrenching. 

We wouldn’t have it any other way.

So you can imagine my excitement at getting to meet Tom Walsh from the Rocky Mountain Way, a fellow baseball blogger with a commitment to the game, to its people, while his journey brought him to Chicago last Monday evening.

jeff lung and tom walsh.JPGI took him to Beiguo, a gem of a Chinese restaurant in my Bridgeport neighborhood where they know me as that “baseball guy”, deep in the heart of the Southside.  Hearing Tom’s stories about the fascinating people he has met and the powerful stories they have shared during his cross-country trek following the game reminded me exactly why baseball is the greatest game on earth. 

It brings us together.

With baseball as my loyal ally, fellowship with like-minded fans, familiar or strange, is never difficult.  Whether you live in Taiwan or Tacoma, we, as baseball people can always share in the power, the memories, the communitas that is the game.

Sure, if you wear your Cubbie blue and I wear my Cardinal red there’s a chance we might argue a bit, disgrace both of our mothers and end up in the hospital, drunk, but in the end, you’ll shake my hand and I’ll shake yours.  Because we’re baseball people.  And baseball people are the best kind of people.

Full of cumin spiced lamb, Yangzhou fried rice and a keener sense of Todd Helton, I wished Tom well on his journey and as he drove off west I looked down and realized my fortune cookie was unopened.  Quickly, I snapped it in two, grabbed the small strip of paper, held it to the light and read:

Dessert CAN Make You Happy.

Don’t hate me, ‘cuz that couldn’t be any more right.

Peace,

Jeff
(Image courtesy of Tom Walsh)

21 Comments

You know, Pokey Reese had a great catch earlier in that game that Jeter made his highly touted diving in the stands grab. Pokey’s was very comparable, but foul. NO ONE ever talks about that. Because it’s freaking Pokey Reese, and not Derek Jeter. Yes, I am yelling :) I do respect what Jeter does, but that Reese catch was great too. And an out can be looked at as an out right?

http://www.statisticianmagician.com/

Note to self: when wandering the South Side of Chicago when I get back (not by myself as I get lost easily), ask Jeff about good Chinese places. :) Sounds like you and Tom had a great time. And you’re so right about baseball people being the best kind of people.
Jen
http://ajroxmywhitesox.mlblogs.com

Joe — Thanks for the enlightenment. I had no idea. You make a good point… still, you help prove my point, that without the backstory (Jeter being Boy Wonder to many) it wouldn’t be that great of a grab. Right?
Jen — As long as you don’t wander too far past 35th street by yourself you’ll be fine. The Bridgeport neighborhood is a fine, fine place to live, be and frolic! Oh yay-er!
–Jeff

Jeff…great post! That’s all I got. You said it all. (Oh, but I will always remember where I was when Kirk Gibson hit that homer. Kinda like OJ’s car chase. Just one of those moments that sticks with you.)
Lori
http://luckylori.mlblogs.com

Baseball people are the best type of people! It’s great that you got to meet Tom!

Julia
http://werbiefitz.mlblogs.com/

Lori — Thx for the kind words. Yes, OJ I remember well too. I thought it was a race.
Julia — Thanks and yes it was!
–Jeff

That’s a good fortune. I only ever get the grammatically incorrect ones…
http://imbringingdiamondback.mlblogs.com

Shiny post, Jeff!

IBDB — Plenty of those to go around. My fav: “You successfully in all your things”
Jonestein — Just the way I like ‘em!
–Jeff

Glad you got to hang out with Tom! On Father’s Day I saw a guy at Coors Field who had a shirt that said, “I’d rather be at Wrigley” and I thought, “So… it could collapse on you…?” and then I thought of you. Baseball people really are the best kind of people. :-)
Emily
http://deconstructingthoughts.mlblogs.com/

Emily, for the sake of Cub fans, I only wish to see Wrigley fall while empty… and during the playoffs of course.
–Jeff

Wow, that’s a great entry! Baseball does really bring people together. It’s amazing. Check out my blog’s birthday entry!!
http://kaybee.mlblogs.com

Kaybee — Happy Birthday, Blog!
–Jeff

Glad you and Tom had a get-together over baseball and Chinese food. What could be better? My favorite word of your post? “Communitas.” Now that’s deep.

http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

Haha. Thanks, Jane. Yeah, a little something I learned (and retained) while reading copious amounts of Victor Turner texts during my college days. Who said a $100K education isn’t worth anything?!
–Jeff

Very well put…but suddenly, I feel the urge to go eat a donut. :O)

Jenn
http://philliesphollowers.mlblogs.com/

No shame in that, Jen. Chinese food often makes you hungry shortly after eating it.
–Jeff

Dessert always makes me happy.
-Dillon
http://dillonm.mlblogs.com

Dillon — ME TOO!!!
–Jeff

That guy Tom sounds like a tool. Maybe if he kept up more on Alyssa Miano’s blog he’d be alright and maybe if he bought MLB tv too. But like the sucka he is, he probably knocks on Selig. Hope he had heartburn from the Chinese or something.

Jimmy whippersnappers
http://rockymountainway.mlblogs.com

LOL. Yeah, you pretty much summed him up there, Jimmy. (Wink, wink).
–Jeff

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