Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A name to be playered

While keeping tabs on my beloved Tampa Bay Rays taking three of four games in their series this weekend against the hated Boston Red Sox, causing their ever-dwindling lead in the American League wildcard race to shrink to a mere two games (A BRIEF ASIDE: Our trainer for the old minor league Tampa Tarpons had a unique way of describing what happens to baseball players who don't respond well to pressure. He would make a circle with his thumb and forefinger, like the "OK" sign, and then made a noise that sounded like "Beee-yooooo-WIP!" as he drew his fingers together, closing the hole. This was supposed to represent a certain part of the player's anatomy, an orifice, clenching so tightly that it can't perform its normal function of allowing things to pass through it, resulting in a severely negative impact on the player's overall well-being and psyche. That's what I think of as I watch the Red Sox and their annual payroll of $160 million on the verge of being overtaken by the Rays, spending about a quarter of that, and it fills my heart with joy), I was reminded once again of how baseball is unique among sports for producing players with colorful names. You don't really find that elsewhere. And not just nicknames, like Yogi or Dizzy or Babe or Mookie. For instance, the Red Sox have an infielder named Marco Scutaro. What on earth could someone named Marco Scutaro be if not a baseball player? I feel like the nurse on duty at the hospital when he was born made a call to a hotline at the home office of Major League Baseball as soon as the birth certificate was filled out and he was put into some kind of secret fast-track program for kids destined to become major leaguers. There's no way any person of influence in his life as he was growing up could have steered him towards another career.
"Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, the fate of my client is in your hands. The Prosecution has failed in every way to prove their case, and for that reason alone, you must find him innocent. That's because the charges against him are completely groundless. He is, quite simply, an innocent man. Or my name isn't Marco Scutaro...which it is."

"I'm deeply sorry for your loss, Mrs. Johnson. I assure you that we will see to all of your needs and handle the arrangements with the utmost care. I know your heart is heavy and filled with grief in this time of mourning, but leave everything up to me, Marco Scutaro, funeral director." 
"Okay Mr. Johnson, we're going to prep you for surgery now. Don't worry about a thing; Dr. Marco Scutaro will be performing the procedure."

"Flight six-niner-five, you're cleared for landing. I know you're low on fuel, heading into a fog bank and missing half a wing but don't worry about a thing. The National Transportation Safety Board didn't name me, Marco Scutaro, air traffic controller of the year for nothing, you know."

1 comment:

Denise said...

That is the best opening sentence of all time. Whoa! Up there with "Call me Ishmael."

Oh, and LET'S GO, RAYS!