control . . .
How about that? You can’t control much in life. That’s what I am learning this week. The most I can do is learn and understand more as time goes along. Everyone seems to be doing their own thing these days, for better or for worse. So much so that it seems like the world is in some kind of everyday anarchy: people are on TV talking about the most mundane things. Shootings and kidnappings abound. Suicides inside jail and out. Watching national news is like reading People magazine but worse. There is no real news. Each station features the exact same thing about the exact same list of features but with a slightly different tone or tongue in cheek. Who are these news readers who get younger and younger, have opinions and ask (naive) bright young questions about really serious matters? Is this what the network honchos think will draw younger viewers? What about us old viewers who really want to know what is going on in the world, as distasteful as it might be?
At least the Red Sox are hitting. The score was 20-4 the other night–we were watching “Chopped” on another channel when the score went from being tied at 4-4 to 10-4 after a grand slam home run (I hate missing those!) Then, the other ten runs occurred in a hitting fest that hasn’t been seen in awhile. They continued to hit last night against the Yankees although they lost a big lead and barely squeaked by in the 10th inning. John Farrell, the coach who replaced Bobby Valentine has transacted a kind of miracle. He actually plans ahead for a rotation of players who get to rest, know when they’re up again and why. That shows a regard and respect for the players as individuals. You can tell the team is happy just to be playing baseball again, never mind that you never heard of half of the names who come up to bat. Even Dennis Eckersley, who was a former pitcher and filling in for the poor guy whose son is up for murdering his girlfriend, is doing well. Usually, I cringe at his half-hearted attempts at humor. Now, his comments are incisive and interesting, using some jargon about hitting that I’ve never heard before now. “Grinding” the pitcher is one of them–that is, hitting lots of foul balls to make the pitcher throw a lot and wear him out.
Grinding is a good term to describe what sometimes happens in life too. I find that when I am isolated and sending emails that it could be perceived by recipients as some sort of grinding too. Or asking about things that other people don’t want to listen to or hear about could also appear to be grinding. Well, now that I know how that term is used in baseball, I can see how it might be annoying in real life too. It doesn’t even matter that your intentions are naive or innocent.
People will do their own thing and can be persuaded or influenced easily by other people’s lifestyles. I am always afraid about that but not to worry, I can’t do anything about it anyhow. No need to stick my finger into that dike hole. Fighting the inexorable is futile. Just like trying to have some influence or control over others. They will do their own thing no matter what, especially in this free-for-all kind of culture that we are living in right now.
Values are what this is about. And the only thing I can do for myself is to adhere to my own values, and not spend time worrying about anyone else’s. That’s a lot of self-control to have, don’t you think? And all we might need too!