One has to be careful about holidays, as it’s easy to offend. For example, next month we will not insensitively declare a celebration specifically of Christmas, or Chanukah, or Kwanzaa, but rather we will renew our e’ver hopeful anticipation that perhaps this year Blez will finally get me a pony. The fact that each of the past 12 years have all come and gone with nothing but the pitter-patter of extreme disappointment is of no consequence. Hope winters eternal! Plan B: Can you fit a CFer and a RFer in a stocking?
So today I stick with the glorious facts: today we celebrate because it’s Thursday and after all, around this time of year some pilgrims put a flag on a rock to say "You can’t be here any more because we want to be!" and somehow cranberry sauce was involved. And to think my friends suggested that Cliff Notes was an iffy choice for learning about history.
For what am I thankful? Hmm...the A’s just improved from 68 wins to 69 wins, half the country hates the other half of the country and the other half hates the first half (I’m non-partisan: I hate everyone), the Raiders keep moving to Las Vegas yet they’re still here, we keep hearing about a new A’s stadium yet it sure seems like the old one. It’s enough to make one a first-class curmudgeon.
Nonetheless the world was built on optimism (or maybe it was concrete, who has the time to research?) and from optimism comes gratitude (not really, that’s just a clumsy segue back to Thanksgiving), and from run-on sentences come ones that are even longer even if you need to add a non-sequitur to make it truly start sounding like a Ray Fosse question where it’s hard to remember, without peeking, how the darn sentence even began.
* I am thankful for humor, as it’s the one thing they’ve never been able to take away no matter how dark a season, or period, might be. It might kill a perfectly good rally when Billy Butler grounds into a quadruple-play but it’s funny enough that it’s worth it.
* I am thankful for wonder, which you can see in a baby’s eyes along with quite a bit of disgusting eye goop. I wonder why it took the A’s so long to stop letting Eric Surkamp make starts for them before finally duping Japan in a transaction the Japanese surely have a yen to forget. (Edit: Apparently he pitches for Korea, not Japan, but their currency isn't a pun so we'll just pretend it's Japan.)
* I am thankful for AN, where I can come to talk about baseball and the A’s and forget that — oh s*#%, forget that I put toast in the toaster that only pops up sometimes, hang on...
...OK the house burned down but that’s fine. I was saying, it’s great to be able to watch, listen to, and discuss baseball, a game so great it’s worth watching and discussing even when the team is slightly pathetic.
* I am thankful for prospects, because even though most of them will fail or be traded they give rise to hope during those dark times. What if Ryon Healy emerges unexpectedly as a legitimate hitter? (He did! It actually happened!) What if Franklin Barreto and Matt Chapman each can reach his 80th percentile projection and give the A’s actual infield soon? What if Frankie Montas and Jharel Cotton begin combining to serve up 100 MPH fastballs, Bugs Bunny changeups, and 30 wins annually?
* I am thankful, personally, for dogs, tea, children, Thai food, and baseball. Did I mention baseball already? If so it warrants a repeat ovation. Spring training is barely over 90 days away! And before that, FanFest, and before that the Winter Meetings!
What are you thankful for? Whatever it is, you’re pre-welcome. Have a splendid Thursday, everyone!