Friday, October 17, 2003

A Sporting Metaphor

Well, another long-suffering bunch of baseball fans will go right on suffering, and their suffering is probably worse than that of the Cubs fans, because it's not like the Red Sox are "lovable losers". Being perpetual losers is bad, but year after year after year of being competitive, of almost winning, is probably worse. Until the other night, Cubs fans really didn't have a Bucky Dent figure in their lore; Sox fans now have another one (Aaron Boone). Of course, real baseball people know that it was actually the decision to leave Pedro Martinez in the game that played the larger role, and that means that both long-suffering ballclubs made their exits this year partly by virtue of their managers' leaving the starters in too late.

Anyway, to the metaphor in my title. Remember that "Looney Tunes" cartoon in which Daffy Duck is to star, but every time he tries to get into the role of the cartoon, the animator's brush comes along and repaints the background, or what Daffy's wearing, or Daffy's body itself, driving him completely to distraction? And at the end of the cartoon, the animator is revealed to be none other than Bugs Bunny, who winks at us and says, "Ain't I a stinker?"

Well, if baseball's a big Looney Tunes cartoon, then the baseball gods are the animators, and the Cubs and Red Sox are Elmer Fudd (who never really has a chance at nabbing Bugs) and Wile E. Coyote (who always has some new scheme that he's convinced will work this time). That's the easiest way I can explain it. Fudd's just a bumbling guy, who once in a very long while might get Bugs Bunny into the dinner pot, but Bugs always figures out a way out. Wile E. Coyote, on the other hand, quite often has the Roadrunner almost dead to rights, but then something insanely improbable (or impossible) happens, leaving him in the dust again.

Those were two great series, though. I can't see the World Series living up to either LCS, even if it goes seven games.

No comments: