Being a licensed sports columnist, I cannot root for any team, you understand. But I know this guy named Spencer who is agonizing over the last weeks of yet another wretched Mets season. This is what he said:
“It’s awful. We lost Parnell and Wright and Harvey and then Davis, who could at least field when he wasn’t moping. I understand why they shipped Byrd and Buck at the trading deadline, but geez, they were professionals. As soon as Byrd was gone, you could pitch around their whole lineup.
“What else did they have? Hawkins has been great, willing to be a closer because there was nobody else. I respect Murphy and Quintanilla for trying. I like the energy of Young – he showed me something the day he collided with Hudson at first base, showing real concern. Now it sounds as if the Mets may not want him back. Who else they got? Lagares can catch a ball. D’Arnaud is not ready, not sure he ever will be.
“Collins kept them together. They still play for him. The Mets should bring him back because he’s a teacher and he doesn’t let up. Maybe they will, just on the theory that they couldn’t find anybody else capable to take over this bunch.
“You know how long this season has lasted? Tejada and Duda are back, playing regularly. Talk about a season going nowhere. Ownership has screwed up this franchise so badly.
“The only thing I have left is rooting for the Pirates. I love the old teams who stayed where they belonged. What self-respecting National League fan wants to see the team of Clemente and Stargell losing, decade after decade? I enjoy seeing Byrd contributing, and young talented guys like McCutcheon. It’s all we got. Go, Bucs.”
“They may hate the cultural context they now find themselves teaching in, but they love their work. The Achilles’ heel of schoolteachers, one all too easily exploited by politicians, is that they love their students.”
(One of the best reads in the NYT these days is Margaret Renkl, in Nashville. In her latest post, Renkl describes the dedicated core of “born teachers” – the majority, she submits.)
(From Madeleine Albright in one of her final interviews in February):
“Putin is small and pale,” I wrote, “so cold as to be almost reptilian.” He claimed to understand why the Berlin Wall had to fall but had not expected the whole Soviet Union to collapse. “Putin is embarrassed by what happened to his country and determined to restore its greatness.” – Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, recalling her first meeting with the relatively unknown Vladimir Putin in 2000. – The New York Times, Feb. 23, 2022.