Saturday, July 25, 2020

Quote of the Day (Roger Kahn, on Ebbets Field, A Fan’s Paradise)

“Ebbets Field was a narrow cockpit, built of brick and iron and concrete, alongside a steep cobblestone slope of Bedford Avenue. Two tiers of grandstand pressed the playing area from three sides, and in thousands of seats fans could hear a ball player’s chatter, notice details of a ball player’s gait and, at a time when television had not yet assaulted illusion with the Zoomar lens, you could see, you could actually see, the actual expression on the actual face of an actual major leaguer as he played. You could know what he was like!”—Sportswriter Roger Kahn (1927-2020), The Boys of Summer (1972)

Sorry, folks, but what we’re seeing now, with a midyear opening, is fake baseball—meaningless games without fans, atmosphere and even a full schedule to compare team and individual results against those posted in other seasons. As far as I’m concerned, the cry of woebegone Brooklyn Dodger fans who once made Ebbets Field their psychic home makes a whole lot of sense: “Wait till next year!”

Yet one more reason to curse COVID-19 and the public leaders who, through inaction and/or wishful thinking, enabled it...

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