Friday, June 26, 2015

It's not about me



Well it kind of is, but not really.

Unless you've been living under a rock you heard today that the Supreme Court of the United States voted in favor of gay marriage. They stated that no civil part of our union can turn away a couple based on their sexual orientation. If you want to marry someone of the same sex that's cool. Love is love.

As a gay man, this obviously makes me happy. Let's be clear here though, it's not about me, Far from it. I'm 36 years old and deeply settled in the life that I have. The life that I love.

A few years ago I fell in love with a woman. Granted, I've dated lots of women in my life, but this was different. She gets me. Karen understands me in a way no one else does and I'm pretty sure it goes the other way too. I get her, she gets me.

The fact that my sexual preference is for men is not an issue. You love who you love. Yes I hurt her when I finally came out as gay, but that never diminished the love that had already been built. The fact that we've stood by each other is nothing short of amazing.

So now that I'm legally allowed to marry another man does that mean I'm going to run out and do that? No. It doesn't mean that at all.

All it means is that now I have the choice to do as I please as an adult and not face consequences for that.

But is this really about me? Is it about any of us that grew up afraid to share our true feelings at the risk of being mocked? It really isn't.

Let me tell you a story. When I was around 16 years old I was at a friend's house having a bonfire and drinking. As the night wore on I let my guard down and tried to admit I was gay to my buddies. I even took the time to point out who at school I thought was attractive. But I was laughed off and poked fun at because nobody was comfortable with this. To this day I can hear them bringing this night up later in our friendship and me having to defend it as "I was just drunk", or something similar.

Nobody wanted to be ok with it because I'm a guy's guy. You've seen it here. I watch sports, I write and talk about baseball. But back then we all thought everything was connected and everyone should have their "place". So I shut up for many years and never pursued it again.

I mean, if my best friends couldn't support me, who the fuck will?

Now many young men and women across our country may not have to face the same roadblock. Now that marriage is defined as 2 people that love each other and it is not defined by the sex of those people, things are different.

I have to wonder if I had grown up in a world in which gay marriage was legal would my friends have reacted differently when I tried to show them the real me. But I'll never know. Frankly, that's ok.

You can't retroactively change the past. Just because a decision comes down from the highest court in the land it doesn't mean that suddenly every one I encountered was suddenly wrong. I mean, yes their minds could have been a little more open, but they were only working within the parameters of what our government laid out for us.

Since you can't change the past all that can be looked at is the future. That's what jumps out at me with this decision. This is why I have cried more times than I care to share today.

It's not about me, it's about all those that come after me. It's about a teen being able to admit that he or she has a crush on a certain individual and not getting ostracized for it.

That's who today really benefits. All the kids that will grow up with no other understanding of love except that it's the factor that wins out.

No, one decision doesn't wipe away hate. There will always be hate spread through the generations. We're a young country, only 239 years old. It's hard to change things overnight. There's no way to convince people that are so strong in their convictions against gay marriage. It's just not going to happen.

But maybe their kids will soften up a little bit. Then their kids after that.

That's why it's selfish to think of just myself today. Finally getting the right to marry who I want is not where this all ends. It's where it begins.

By all means, go out and celebrate this landmark day. I for one know it's not just about me. It's for all the generations to come that can now grow up in a world where whoever you marry doesn't matter in the eyes of our government.

Here's your freedom to be you, don't ever try to hide it. You may be missing out on the best days of your life.

Eric
@2outhits

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Cub Kidd and the Athletic Butler

photo via bigtimebats.com


In a strange bit of sports news the Chicago Bears signed tight end Bear Pascoe to a contract. It's the first time I can remember a player sharing his first name with the team he plays for. The only example in professional sports that comes to my mind is Napolean Lajoie  for the Cleveland Naps and the team was named after him. If you can think of others, feel free to comment below.

It got me wondering. How do other team names sound as the first name of a player? More specifically, what would every Major League Baseball team's nickname look like as a first name? Why baseball? Because it's April and that's what I'm watching.

Just for fun, I've decided to list an example of every team name used as a first name, paired with a common surname in either North or South America. As in the Bear example above I'm going to drop the 's' at the end on most of the names.

Monday, April 13, 2015

2-out hits & misses: Week 1




The baseball season is officially a week old. Every team has played 6 or 7 games except for the Cubs and Cardinals. I'm introducing my weekly look around the league with my "2-out hits & misses" column. It's time for small sample sizes and overreactions. There was some good baseball and some really ugly baseball in the first week so let's take a look at what's going on now that the 2015 season is under way.

Hits

Top of the A.L. Central

The Detroit Tigers are something else. They've jumped out to a 6-0 start on the back of their juggernaut offense. Through 6 games the Tigers have a +31 run differential and have scored 47 total runs. That's just under 8 runs a game. It doesn't matter who is pitching for Detroit, they are getting enough run support daily.

Miguel Cabrera is locked in early hitting .520 (13-25) with 2 HR's and 2 doubles. Ian Kinsler keeps getting on base and has already scored 10 runs. Heck, Yoenis Cespedes is hitting .321 and it's only the 5th best batting average for a Tigers regular. This is Detroit's 4th time starting 6-0, the only time they started 7-0 was in 1984 when they ripped through the American League on their way to a title.

Kansas City is trying to prove that 2014 was no fluke. The Royals are also off to a 6-0 start. I haven't seen any of their games so I can't really speak to how they're doing it. I'll have to check them out sometime this week. By the way, the other 3 teams in the division have won a total of 5 games.