Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fly vs Pop Fly

In little league, there are three positions that every kid knows are the ‘cool’ positions: pitcher, short-stop, and center field. If you play any of these, you are cool. These are the kids that get almost every play and actually get to throw the ball. But guess what…

You’re the kid who got stuck in right field. Not because you’ve never played before… but mostly because you suck at baseball. But you don’t know that. With all the positive reinforcement during and after practices, you think your basic skills of fielding, throwing, and hitting are what won you the job. But, you soon find out that right field is boring. So every week you’re hoping that maybe, just maybe, you might get switched to left field. Or that there’s a freak accident and Kyle breaks his cool, auto-shading glasses, leaving him artificially blind until he can get a new pair.

But until then, you’re stuck chasing bugs and singing the ‘Dandelion Song’, (You grab a dandelion and say in a tone of rhyme, “Mama had a baby and its head popped off.” You then slide your thumb under the ‘head’ of the flower and pop it off, leaving it for dead. Kind of a gruesome picture compared to a girl grabbing the dead, unplucked weed and gently blowing the seeds into the wind while skipping around in a pink dress, humming and giggling) because no one hits anything to right field. You’re in the middle of the mental debate of which flavor of Laffy Taffy to get after the game, strawberry or watermelon, (strawberry is the flavor you can never be disappointed with, but watermelon is multi-colored, with little black candy seeds.) when all of a sudden the coach is yelling your name!

A little dazed at first, you wipe the day-dream slobber off your chin and begin to frantically search the cloudless sky for that little white sphere. You stick your glove high in the air and take a few steps backwards. Still no ball. You glance at Jessica, who’s sprinting towards you from center field, (yes, she’s a girl and yes, she’s better than you) just to make sure you’re in the right area. As you drag your eyes back to the sky, it appears, and it’s hurtling towards you like a heat-seeking missile. The words “I got it!” come barging through your clenched teeth. It’s too late to back down now. And you brace yourself for impact.

Fifteen years down the road, you’re in college sitting with a group of friends trying to figure out why ‘Timber Tower’ was made as a cheaper version of ‘Jenga’ when it has an obvious design flaw: the lip that doesn’t quite let you slide the tower out of its tin container. (It’s also not a perfect 3:1 width ratio, which allows for spaces between blocks, which could in turn affect game-play performance.) Your attention is slightly drawn from the riveting conversation as a small, black fly buzzes around the room. A sly smile appears across your mug and you begin to think of the events about to occur: the fly will casually make its way to your side of the room, its nonchalant manner will infuriate you, and you will be forced to retaliate.

The fly DOES make his way towards you. You tighten the muscles in your hand to a karate-chop position. And you wait… perfectly still… hardly breathing… staring into space… heightening your peripheral vision. Out of the corner of your eye you see it! Your right hand springs into action and you feel a small nick on the back of your hand!

“I got it!” you exclaim proudly. Responses of ‘You did?’, ‘No way!’, and ‘What’d you get?’ simultaneously fill the room.

“No, you didn’t”, replies your always-gotta-be-right roommate, Dan. “See, it’s right there. You didn’t get it.” He points to a little black spec still buzzing around the room.

“But I did get it,” you defend. “I felt it.”

“So if you got it, why is it still there?” comes the inquiry.

“I got it. Just because I got it, it doesn’t mean I demolished or obliterated it. I hit it. Thus, getting it.”

“You obviously didn’t get it, because if you would have gotten it, it would be got.”

“The got I’m referring to isn’t the ‘got’ when catching a pop fly. Everyone who calls ‘I got it!’, while chasing a pop fly, fully determine to catch the pop fly. Anything less is not considered getting it. I’m referring to the ‘I got it!’ used when achieving something extremely rare. ... Like hitting a fly with the back of your hand.”

The others in the room laughingly comment about the pointlessness of the conversation, but you contend that a conversation is only pointless if nothing is learned. The subject quickly changes and you’re left to ponder the unsettled question: Did you get it? Your mind refers to the Count of Monte Cristo: (the movie, because you don't read books) when Edmond Dantes is trapped on the island prison Chateau d'If with the old man. He tries to pass his hand through the dripping water without getting it wet. When he finally does, he could rightly exclaim, ‘I got it!’

Your train of thought is slightly derailed by a buzzing noise. For a second time your hand tightens, and a forceful movement with the right arm follows. You nearly jump to your feet as you boast, “I got it again!”

And the small, black insect continues its wary flight around the room.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

YoYo- Ma or Yo kidz Mama?

A recent conversation between my buddy Dan and I while enjoying some instrumental music on a Sunday evening:

Dan: If I could find a girl that played like this…(referring to the skill level of YoYo-Ma) I would marry her on the spot.

Bart: What is she playing?

Dan (responding in a more forceful way, thinking I didn’t hear him the first time) If… I…could… ….

Bart: I know, I know!... But what is she playing??

D: The cello.

B: So why don’t you find someone who can play the cello?

D:(With the most serious, disgruntled face imaginable) Cause I don’t want to get married on the spot!

(At this point I’ve rolled over laughing, and he continues to explain while starting to laugh himself) Because if I did meet her, I’d have to marry her right there. I’d be obligated.

B: Because she's masterful at playing the cello?

D: Yes.

PS. I’ve recently found out that in Mormon society, about 80% of the guys date 20% of the girls.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Conspiracy Theory of the Worst Kind

So it’s my friend’s birthday today. It is a day that is anticipated and celebrated, by at least one person, every year. A day that would be respected and commemorated anywhere in the world. A day of old memories and new beginnings. A day that was randomly pulled from a hat.

When someone tells me it’s their birthday, I’m always kind of suspicious. I’m thinking, “Prove it.” Lets be honest. We’ve all gone to Applebee’s and claimed it’s our birthday for a sweet-action blondie brownie a la mode. But when they pull out their drivers license (or even their birth certificate), to me it’s just a plastic card with some numbers on it. Antics like this are pulled off every day.

1) Kids with fake ID’s. Ex: Teenager Zack Morris sneaking into a club to be with his ‘college-aged’ girlfriend.

2) Kids with fake ID’s. Ex: High schoolers getting booze for a party.

And did I mention…

3) Kids with fake ID’s. Ex: Little Chinese girls running and jumping after shiny, sparkly things.

Think about this for a second. Does anyone remember that ‘first’ day in the hospital? If they tell you they do, they’re lying. I can hardly remember Jr. High, let alone those first moments in my parents’ arms. So the next thing I know, I’m a six year old being forced to memorize my ABC’s, my name, and my birthday, all while trying not to spill my Superman lunchbox while chasing after the morning bus. (I actually carried my lunch in a brown paper bag that my mom stapled shut so the food wouldn’t fall out. But that’s beside the point.)

Who is she to tell me when my birthday is? Just because she left notes in my lunches and tied my hood on really tight doesn’t mean she knows when my birthday is… does it? I mean, she was there. Supposedly.

The bottom line is: no one really knows. It can’t be proven. I can’t just cut my friend in half and count how many rings he has. Mom can say she had that child. But did she really? Babies could’ve been mixed and matched in the maternity ward. The doctor could’ve written random dates on that birth certificate... if he was really a doctor. Dad could’ve taped someone else in labor.

So to my friend I say, Happy Theoretical Birthday.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

One month 'till sanity returns...

(This is a slightly serious e-mail to my cousin who is an avid Jazz fan...)

So I just found out the Suns picked up your favorite player from the free agency pond. Matt Barnes from Golden State. The dude is a hustler! And seeing as how Grant Hill isn't the most dependable anymore… I think Barnes is a really good pick up. Especially if you think about him and Raja Bell D-ing up the opposition. If they can get Dragic from Europe to back up ol' Steve, I think they might be legit. (I used to be legit. In fact I was too legit. I was too legit to quit. But now, I'm not legit. You could say I'm unlegit. And now, I must quit.)

You know, the Suns have made some serious strides to make a run in the playoffs this year… what about the Jazz? Who'd they get to improve their team? Brevin Knight? Are you serious? Unless Okur has seriously worked on his layups during this offseason, I'm afraid the Jazz are going to end up worse off than last year. D-Will can only do so much… and Boozer has a LOT to prove after last years melt-down (not to mention the disappointing showing during the Olympics)… So yeah… just wondering your take… Oh and bring on Oct 9!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

I really hope my teacher HAS to read this.

Congratulations to me for creating a blog. I was hoping that my wife would be the blogger of the family. But seeing as how she hasn't met me yet (aka I'm still single and living the dream) and that this is worth like 75 percent of my grade for class... I basically got suckered into doing something I would have rather not. Kind of like dance class and piano lessons. In other words... Enjoy. :)

So I told my friend Josh that I was 'ailing from a condition known as foosbackdeathedness'. He then asked me what foosbackdeathedness is. I was surprised he didn't know. This was my response: (and if you notice Josh spelled with an H thats okay... just a nickname)

I'm glad you asked Hosh. With symptoms that have puzzled health professionals for years, foosbackdeathedness has now been labeled by various doctors and surgeons around the world as "The most overrated disease known to mankind". Some even suggest it's not even a disease at all... just 'lower back pain' caused by playing three hours of ridiculous foosball. But as one who currently suffers from foosbackdeathedness I can tell you that if anything compares to ebola, this is it.

And to prove this blog really will be about nothing... Exibit A: a conversation with a classmate.

Bailey- My American Gladiator name is Death. Try and beat Death. Try.
Bart- Have you ever met Resurrection. He's one tough cookie in 'Assault'.
Bailey-but the thing is..he hasnt come yet. so for right now, im numba 1.
Bart-yes, he has
Bailey-not the 2nd time
Bart-so... people are still resurrected
he came the first time, he will come the second time, and he will be the ultimate champion
Plus, after he gets done with you, you wont exist
Bailey-i dont think you care that much about whatever it is im talking about as long as you make me lose lol
Bart-no but really... you said try and beat death... well death can be beaten
Bart-its like paper scissors rock... but like ultimate paper scissors rock... so it would be called death--jesus--ressurrection
Bailey-do you think i dont know these things?
Bart-death kills jesus, jesus creates ressurrection, ressurrection obliterates death
Bailey-congratulations for beating death