Life Is Not An “Etch-A-Sketch”

“Turn Etch-a-Sketch upside down and shake and everything disappears.”

When December 31 turns to January 1 on Saturday night, 2016, the good, the bad, the strange, the crazy won’t magically disappear.

No kicking the year to the curb, kids. It’ll still be there, hanging around in your mind with important thoughts like, “Did the cat get stuck in the closet again?”


Relax, kids. Mookie’s fine.

I was told I was a little too dour in my sum-up-2016 post from earlier this week, so let’s fix that with just five quick off-the-top-of-my-head things in 2016 that made me smile:

5. Boaty McBoatface. Even though things ultimately didn’t work out with the name.

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“Hot As Hell, Ain’t It Prez?”

100 degrees

It is 100 here again today. It is hot and humid and sticky. It is miserable.

If it is not 100 degrees where you are, I am both happy for you and a little annoyed that you deserve better weather than me.

There is baseball this afternoon in Richmond – minor league ball – and in younger times we would go.

But, not today. Not when it’s 100. Because these are not younger times and age slows you down. Age tires you out. And, age protects you from doing stupid things like going to a baseball game when it is 100 degrees outside.

Because 100 is a lot of anything.

Dennis Eckersley threw 100 complete games in his career.  Which is strange because I’m of the generation that remembers him mainly as a shaggy-headed closer.

Embed from Getty Images

Eckersley, 1978-ish.

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“Bartolo Has Done It … The Impossible Has Happened!”

We live in a weird world.

I don’t even have to explain that thought, do I? You’ve already run with it in your head. Weird politics. Weird weather. Weird AL East standings.

al east standings

Look who’s first!

Weird weirdness all the way “wround.”

But then, Mets’ starting pitcher Bartolo Colon, known on this blog as My Metropolitan Dumpling, does something beyond weird. He does something extraordinary. He does something that no other ballplayer has ever done.

Last night, at age 42, he became the oldest major leaguer to hit his very first home run.

It was real and it was spectacular.

“Bartolo has done it! The impossible has happened!”

Just when you think the world is going to hell in a hand basket which means … I don’t even know what that means …

But, here. Let’s watch it again in Spanish.

“Hasta la vista, baby!”

That home run trot took some 30 seconds. He earned every slow, savoring step of it.

Colon, a career .092 hitter, will be 43 on May 24. He’s a fun and joyful presence whenever he plays. (He almost makes me think the designated hitter rule was a mistake after all.)

Bartolo Colon, my Metropolitan dumpling, hit a home run last night.

It just sounds right, doesn’t it?

Maybe this world is going to be ok after all.

Or, maybe not. But, at least we can watch this over and over again until it is.


My Metropolitan Dumpling

I may be an Orioles fan, but that doesn’t mean I don’t appreciate other teams and other players.

(Hey, not so fast there, Toronto Blue Jays. I didn’t mean you.)

I’ve made no secret that 42-year-old New York Mets pitcher Bartolo Colon is my little dumpling. Like here.

First, he’s 42. (I remember being 42. I promise you, it wasn’t that long ago.) He’s also pitched 170 innings this season which is more than any of the much-younger Orioles starters has done.

Second, he is built like a dumpling. His stats will tell you he is 5’11” and 265 pounds, but really, who knows?

Third, he doesn’t care what you think.

Fourth, he makes the occasional crazy play like this …

And, that is definitely worth a tip of the cap from me.

P.S. According to Associated Press, Colon is the first pitcher, in “at least” the past 100 years, to beat the same opponent while playing with seven different teams. (The seven teams: Indians, White Sox, Angels, Red Sox, Yankees, A’s, Mets.) The team that Colon beats … over and over again, no matter what team he plays for? The Orioles, of course. (Because, why else would I even mention this?)