OldOld man Finn spends most of his evenings during the Summer in his paneled breezeway with mismatched brown carpet, stretched out & half-napping in his La-Z-Boy while watching baseball on the 27-inch 4:3 TV which sits to his right at an almost 90-degree angle. Holding the remote on his left thigh with his left hand, OldOld man Finn occasionally flips to Fox News between innings to make sure he doesn’t have to come out of retirement to fix the mistakes of younger generations, again. Though with the pennant races tightening in mid-August, he’s often more apt to leave the leaders to deal with the more trivial issues like Economic fallout.
Once upon a time OldOld man Finn could take his knowledge & observation and not only could he anticipate pitches thrown in an at-bat but he could predict what a batter would do in his next at-bat. Nowadays, the pessimism as a result of following the Church of Baseball-Wrigleyville denomination has crept in and clouded his judgement somewhat – though he fatefully predicted the denomination’s fall in game 7 of the 2003 NLCS – and he just called that Derek Lee strikeout w/ the bases loaded & 2 outs.
It’s this never-ending agony which comes with the Wrigleyville denomination that makes me wonder if oldold man Finn reconsiders his conversion from the Pittsburgh denomination.
How does a man who’s never had a home outside of Valparaiso, IN become a Pittsburgh devotee? One would guess the steel mills played a role, but one would be wrong. So the story goes, OldOld man Finn was in the same company in WWII as Danny Murtaugh, manager of the 1960 & 1973 World Series Champion Pittsburgh Pirates. Friends from the war, the OldOld man spent many a homestand in Wrigleyville watching his war buddy’s team.
Not only did the OldOld man watch decades worth of baseball, but OldOld man Finn spent quite a few years playing semi-pro fast-pitch softball. Weekend athletes nowadays spend hours in the gym in order to hit a 12-inch or 16-inch softball that is chucked at them at a speed of 20 miles an hour and don’t lose man-credit but back in the 1950s, guys used to zip that ball around the diamond. Some companies & factories would pay guys extra just to have them play in their team. Such were the days…
But with all his work & witness in the Church of Baseball, OldOld man Finn has never seen a game at Fenway Park. He just shared that jaw-dropping tidbit with me as he spoke of how his oldest daughter – my aunt – was going cross-country to Martha’s Vineyard & will be catching another game at Fenway while her and my uncle are out there.
“I’ve never been there & I’ll probably never go.” – OldOld man Finn, 45 seconds ago.
If you know anything about the Finn’s winter home of Ft. Myers, Margaritaville then you know it’s the spring training home of the Church of Baseball-Boston denomination. So the fact that OldOld man Finn spends half his year in the the Church of Baseball-Boston denomination’s spring training home & still hasn’t been to Fenway threw me off guard.
The baseball fan in me gives a moment of sorrow to the baseball devotee in OldOld man Finn, but the thinker within me doesn’t know if his as-of-now missed pilgrimage is something to Blues over.