While walking on the beach you stumble on a valuable object buried in the sand — say, a piece of jewelry or an envelope full of cash. What do you do with it? Under what circumstances would you keep it?
What, are we are bunch of third graders here? Finders keepers, losers weepers? Seriously?
It’s not because I’m a goody two-shoes. I’m not. A couple of basics make it inevitable I’d feel obliged to return found valuables to their real owners or at least try.
1. I have lost valuables and sometimes been fortunate in having them returned to me by total strangers who apparently were raised right.
2. I know how painful loss is. How humiliating, saddening, and hurtful. I would not willingly inflict such pain on anyone if there’s a chance of fixing it.
Let me put this in perspective: if you don’t make a good faith effort to return what you found, what does that say about you? For that matter, about your parents, your schooling and anything you identify as your religion?
What does it say about us that this is supposedly a question worthy of consideration?
That mantra, coined by ABC’s Wide World of Sports, has been part of our lexicon for almost half a century. It has seeped from sports into everyday life.
These are the days that try the souls of many baseball fans, especially those here in New England. Our Red Sox have apparently regressed. Forgetting last year’s world championship, they’ve retreated to the status of their previous season.
2012 lingers as a nightmare in Red Sox nation. If you’re a passionate fan, every loss tears at your psyche. It’s personal. Family relationships are jeopardized. Only pets are safe though even they sense there’s trouble in paradise.
It’s been this way all my life. As a teenager, while brooding over abandonment by my beloved Brooklyn Dodgers who left in the dead of night for California, I discovered another kind of agony in other sports. Golf and bowling.
I’ve never been a fan of golf or bowling. So why the agony?
First hand experience is the answer. I caddied for women golfers one forgettable summer. Nocturnal reading of Peyton Place took my mind off some of my link misadventures. I didn’t know much about golf. I lugged the golf bag, dutifully following the women from one hole to another. It seemed strange that they were often hitting their balls into the brushes and bushes when I was on duty.
One lady golfer followed me into the bushes, explaining she wanted to help me find my balls. Later, experienced caddies would explain it to me. That was decades before Tiger Woods putted his way into our national consciousness.
Then there was bowling. When I was 9 or 10, I could give you the lineups — the batting orders — of all 16 major league baseball teams. Those were the days before expansion sullied big league baseball. I could even emulate many of the batting stances.
Bowling? Bowling? Seriously?? I do recall someone named Don Carter on a neighbor’s small black and white television in sports highlights. He was called the Babe Ruth of bowling. I wasn’t impressed.
The summer after my caddy fiasco I found a different way to earn money for baseball games, movies and other essential things. I became a pin setter for the women’s bowling league at our church. I know what you’re thinking. Those were the days of manual pin setting in bowling.
The alley was in the basement of the church. Our Pastor, with a strange smile, gave me some perfunctory lessons in pin setting. He said I should have no problems because I was very agile. I didn’t have a clue.
The first few frames of the first game I worked went smoothly. I was actually pretty fast at retrieving the pins and setting them back in place. I was confident. I’d reset all the pins for the next frame. Kneeling down to tie my shoe, I heard the now familiar sound, then a yell and froze. The ball found its mark but it wasn’t the pin.
The pain took my breath away. When I finally stood up, the ladies were blushing. Our Pastor was smiling.
Is it just me, or do these old trucks look like they are grinning at the camera? I just got some cool new filters from NIK and decided to make them look as if they are in motion – Analog Effects 2! It’s time for fun with filters!
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