"If it's her you want, I don't care about that. You can have my girl but don't touch my hat. I grew up lonesome on the open range and that cold north wind can make a man feel strange..."
Last week I had my heartbroken (yes yet again) as I had to call off my engagement to KSTP-TV newscaster Harris Faulkner. Yes I still dig her work and her authoritative news delivery and yes when I first saw her in person I thought every one in the room had to be able to hear my heart beat as I became very flush. I'm a guy who falls in love as easily an United States apology to China and I'm as lenient in accepting my partner's faults as a judge in a P. Diddy trial but Harris crossed an absolute resolute line in my soul.
The other night when she was doing her dutiful anchor banter with sportscaster Joe Schmidt he mentioned the Twins and Royals were involved in a scoreless tie. Harris said it was a "boring 0-0 game." Those that don't know any better now but are sure to jump on the Twins' bandwagon when the team is games ahead in July, are the ones who think that finely pitched games are boring and any inning that doesn't feature a home run is an inning where nothing happens. In other words they don't know squat. They can't appreciate the game and they probably only like poetry that rhymes too.
A fellow just can't marry a gal like that.
It is nice to see some enthusiasm in this town for the Twins again. There's a noticeable buzz in the Metrodome this season that has been missing for quite some time. At work people are actually sometimes talking about the previous night's game. Though our local thinning newspapers still run meaningless Timberwolves West Coast basketball games and irritating pre-Viking draft stories more prominently on page one of their sports sections, the Twins nonetheless aren't being relegated to the inside pages quite so often so early this year.
And rightfully so. Back in the early 1980's when the decision was made to go with young players like Hrbek, Gaetti, Viola, and Puckett, the team suffered through some God awful seasons record-wise. But that was always a team worth watching because the players were good and they were developing and when they won they won because they played the game right and it was all very fun to watch. The same can be said for this year's team.
In an era when most teams are stacking their lineups with softball bellied sluggers who just want to cream every pitch out of the ballpark, and thanks to some awful pitching often do so, the Twins have decided to build a team based on pitching, defense, speed, and doing the little things that are supposed to be done to win games.
The team features a tremendous double play combo in Guzman and Rivas who are sublimely a delight to watch. Mientkiewicz is a terrific fielding first baseman. Jones and Hunter are among the best at running down fly balls and making more than their share of highlight plays.
Few teams can feature four starters better than Radke, Milton, Redman and Mays. The question about the team is whether or not they can manufacture enough runs to beat the other teams who launch their tightly wound baseball mammoth smashed home runs. But Koskie and Lawton are steady hitters and Ortiz has shown enough promise to think that this team might just keep on doing what they have done at the beginning of this season.
Yes baseball is back and like the budding flowers in front of my house it is an annual yet always appreciated ritualistic feeling. Yet wistfully as my Dad has pointed out a couple of times already my Mom would have been rightfully excited about this team. One of her many missed qualities was the ability to appreciate beauty when she saw it, and console one who has made the decision that another just isn't the right person after all.