The ticketing ad tag this season for the San Francisco Giants is, “Do you speak Giant?”
If not, no worry. It’s just as easy to see no evil and hear no evil.
I once thought the height of delusional observation came way courtesy of a comet named Hale-Bopp. Then I noticed how some sycophants are approaching Barry Bonds’s pursuit of the home run record.
The hallucinogenic nature of Haight-Ashbury has apparently trickled its way down the hills toward the San Francisco Bay and enveloped Pac Bell Park, where thousands of clueless wonders take pride in calling themselves the sole supporters of Bonds’s joyless assault on Hank Aaron’s hallowed record.
“You can’t prove he took steroids,” they’ll retort, eyes bulging with fury, lips pursed just enough to show a shadow of doubt that won’t be revealed if it’s anything to them. “It wasn’t against the rules,” the other, more lucid half of the crowd will argue, apparently in the firm belief that major leaguers can commit murder too since the rulebook speaks nothing of homicide unless it is a John Wasdin fastball.
As Bonds comes closer and closer (11 away) to breaking Aaron’s historic mark, the furor over his assault has begun anew, way too soon for some. The San Francisco Chronicle’s Ray Ratto comes right out and blames the Red Sox for this.
“But you knew it would come back to Bonds eventually,” he writes. “You might have thought it wouldn't really get heated until he got his homer total to 750, which given the number of times he is likely to be walked in the next few weeks, might take him to the start of June. But no, the Summer of Weird is upon us already, courtesy of the damned Red Sox.”
Well, why shouldn’t it come back to Bonds eventually? Baseball’s national embarrassment is about to fulfill the endgame of his evil plan, and Bay Area fans have swept the controversy under the bed like a D they got on a geometry test.
Red Sox starter Curt Schilling took the airwaves in Boston yesterday and blamed Bonds for everything short of being the second shooter in Dallas, sparking a furor among the Bonds apologists, a nationwide cult that I can only picture as flipping feverishly through their baseball card collection in their sweatpants while waiting for their hero to hit No. 756.
“I mean, he admitted that he used steroids,” Schilling said, seemingly referring to Bonds’s leaked grand jury testimony that he unknowingly took performance-enhancing substances. “I mean, there’s no gray area. He admitted to cheating on his wife, cheating on his taxes, and cheating on the game, so I think the reaction around the league, the game, being what it is, in the case of what people think. Hank Aaron not being there. The commissioner [Bud Selig] trying to figure out where to be. It’s sad.
“And I don’t care that he’s black, or green, or purple, or yellow, or whatever. It’s unfortunate… there’s good people and bad people. It’s unfortunate that it’s happening the way it’s happening.”
That seems to be the way most folks feel about this whole charade, including, most important, Aaron, who has said he won’t be on hand when Bonds breaks his record. He must be a racist too then, no?
“The guy's total racist,” writes one delusional Bonds fan of Schilling on the Giants’ official message board. “When a person says something like, I don't care what color he is black, purple etc.., or I have black friends too, before he's accused of being a racist, IS 100% racist.”
First off, can we agree that boiling this issue down to race is downright lazy? Here’s why people don’t want Bonds to break the record: He cheated. I mean, it can not get any simpler than that, which is why the race card must be resorted to by his supporters. Actually, the reason Schilling had to clarify was because of jump-the-gun blame artists like this fella. Look, when Aaron made his pursuit 33 years ago, race was an unfortunate factor. In 2007, that’s simply not the case, despite what ESPN’s idiotic poll says.
In case you missed it, ABC/ESPN ran a poll recently that showed a divide in racial rooting for Bonds. Seventy-five percent of African-Americans want Bonds to break the record, as opposed to just 28 percent of whites. “See, it’s race,” react the Bonds champions, ignoring the fact that Mark McGwire’s pasty-white face is trying to be forgotten by all of the game for his part in the steroids controversy.
But when it comes to Bonds, anything that comes out of ESPN should be trusted about as much as that Twizzler you debated giving a whirl off the subway floor. This is a man they were in bed with a year ago, when the universally hated “Bonds on Bonds” hit the air, a Bonds-approved infomercial that was to journalism what “Howard the Duck” was to the Hollywood Academy.
Just yesterday, when ESPNews’ Michael Kim read the Schilling story, he felt the need to follow it up with, “It’s important to note that Barry Bonds has never admitted to any of the things Schilling has accused him of.” Except for under oath in a grand jury. Besides that…
The blog Sox Fan 1 points out: “Tonight, on ESPN, Baseball Tonight analysts John Kruk and Steve Phillips called out Schilling for his remarks. Kruk criticized Schilling for the personal indictment of Bonds… Phillips stated that Schilling had it wrong (he said Bonds never admitted to using steroids) and then called out Schilling for making statements that might serve as a distraction to his team.”
The site Smittblog admits they’re tired of defending Schilling, but ESPN’s coverage of his comments has gotten out of control. “Later yesterday, on Dan Patrick's ESPN radio program, Dan and Keith Olberman began criticizing Schilling for saying that Bonds ‘admitted’ to using steroids when he technically never has. Then today, ESPN Radio's Mike & Mike in The Morning are just LAMBASTING Schilling for saying that Bonds admitted to using steroids. Now, I think Schilling should do everyone some good and just shut the [expletive] about all of this, especially since he killed Jose Canseco for spouting his mouth off, but where do these sports opinionists get off killing Schilling for making these comments? Have they not done the exact same thing now for the last 3 years?”
Hypocritical stones down there in Bristol.
Bonds apologists have demonized the “Game of Shadows” authors for dragging their hero’s name through the dirty mud he created for himself out of jealousy for McGwire and Sammy Sosa, both of whom allegedly went the performance enhancement route for their respective glory.
Oh, but we can’t prove them either. They never admitted to it. Rafael Palmeiro never admitted to it either. We can’t prove the definitive existence of a deity, yet churches line the streets of every town and city in this country. We can’t prove that anyone actually watches “American Dad” but there it is every Sunday night.
Whether it be a matter of just defending an athlete about to do something that’s supposed to be special or blindly refusing to admit there’s a problem with the game that you call the backbone of your existence, one thing is clear: If you have your head in the sand at this stage of the game, there’s nothing anyone can do to help you. You’re a lost cause, and frankly, if you’re that clueless I’m not sure the rest of us really want you joining our team. You know, the one based in Reality. Plays in Obvious Park. Have fun at Pac Bell though.
See no evil. Hear no evil. Speak no evil.
Tickets on sale now.