Thursday, November 3, 2011

Leviticus Baseball

I HATE THE VERY IDEA OF BASEBALL PLAYOFFS, but they are upon us, and I will watch. Reluctantly. Baseball playoffs – and interleague play, for that matter – constitute a violation of divine precept.

In the late afternoon of the sixth day, God devised the rules of baseball, and then – in an instant! – created the system of two rival leagues, each league with its own set of teams. Each team in each league plays 154 games, none of them with clubs from the other league. The team with the most wins in the American League then plays the team with the most wins in the National League in a contest named the World Series. No playoffs. Since the contestants in the World Series have not played each other before, God knew, there would be an element of mystery and an atmosphere of tingling expectation leading up to the first pitch. The team that first wins four games is champion of the world. Period.

Atmospherics figure prominently in the celestial design. World Series games are to played in east-central North America during the last week of September and the first week of October, in somewhat reliably glorious weather. Games occur in daytime. Among the chosen – the citizens of the United States – half the population must follow the action pitch-by-pitch. Most of them must stand around radio sets or by lean through windows into the rooms of people wealthy enough to have gained access to the new technology of tele-vision. Nothing – nothing – matters so much as the fate of their team.

And life never gets better until sex.

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