Some Things Make You Rethink

To be honest, my shortfall in writing posts since we returned from our Tennessee, Atlantat, Asheville trip back to the Southwest corner is not according to Hoyle.

i was going put a super Herculean effort into finishing my book edit to send to my editor. i have at least a half-dozen posts unfinished that i hope to still put here.

Then chaos visited the Southwest corner. The developer who built our home thirty-one years ago chose to put in “quest” piping (PVC) rather than copper to increase his profit margin with no regard for the new homeowners, aka us. In discussing a renovation of one of our bathrooms, Maureen was advised by an expert to change out the quest with copper.

We were lucky. Several places in the piping could have burst at any moment, and since we are on a slab with the piping in the attic and crawl spaces, many not crawlable (and yes, i know “crawlable” is not a word but it works for me), such a burst or leak would have caused some devastating damage and cost…well, a bundle.

It is over, but for more than two weeks, living at our home has been akin to living on a Navy ship during a major overhaul, which i can tell you is not a fun experience having experienced it four times. Back then, i found it interesting and sometimes laughable. This time at my age, i found it depressing.

So i spent my time on home tasks, not writing. After all, the most impacted room in the house was my office and my normal escape space in the garage was the set up area for the re-pipers.

Now, we have the painters coming to paint all the holes in the walls, covered and textured by the re-pipers, not painted. But i turned my focus back to the book. It feels good, But i haven’t posted anything much here.

However, something happened Saturday that gained my attention.

As you should know, i have turned my wife into a baseball fan, specifically a San Diego Padre baseball fan. We watched the Saturday game the Padres played in Washington, D.C. against the Nationals. In between the top and bottom halves of the sixth inning, the world stopped acting normally in Nationals Park. As the Padre manager, Jayce Tingler, was talking to the umpire while our Padres positioned themselves on the field, gun shots were heard throughout the stadium.

Those shots came from outside the stadium in a gunfight between people in two cars (maybe people: i’m not sure what you call people who are that small and stupid), but the shots sounded as if they were inside the stadiums.

Panic ensued. Fans began stampeding toward the exits only to be told by the stadium announcer to remain inside the stadium. The Padres were directed to go to the dugout except for the relievers in the bullpen who were ordered to stay in place.

Then heroes of a different kind stepped up, even though they were baseball heroes, superstars with mega salaries. i’m going from the reports i have from the San Diego media and today’s excellent article in the San Diego Union-Tribune sports section. Therefore, i have no comment about the Nationals players but am sure they reacted admirably.

But the Padre superstars? Fernando Tatis, Jr., the new poster boy of major league baseball who this spring signed an absurd $330 Million contract for 14 years was one of the many young men who stepped up to a next level. After he got to the dugout, not knowing where the shots were being fired, ran down the left field line, grabbed two children and sprinted back to the dugout. After depositing them in the safer confines of the dugout, he repeated the run and brought two more children back to safety. His efforts were duplicated by Jurickson Profar, Wil Myers, and Manny Machado who were also making rescue efforts. The team opened gates from the stands onto the field and ushered as many fans as would fit into the dugout.

Tatis’ quotes in the U-T story, are worth repeating:

“There were little kids…I felt like somebody had to go get them. I felt the safest place was the clubhouse. I was just trying to get the families and get to a safe place.

“…The situation changed immediately.” There was no longer player and fans. I feel like everyone was people, just human beings out there.”

There are other stories of players and their reaction to the crisis, but you can find them, and i won’t repeat them here.

But i gotta tell you, Tatis and the other Padre players have moved up a notch or two in my appreciation of them. Baseball is a game with the media pushing statistical heroes. But Saturday, the Padres had some real heroes on the field.

Note: i told Maureen this morning i wondered what the reaction would have been thirty years ago before mass shootings became a constant in our lives. i don’t know but i suspect it would have been significantly different.

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