Sunday, January 29, 2017

Joe's one baseball game

Grandpa Joe didn't care much about sports. I've written before about that. One of his most famous lines, one that I essentially agree with (although I struggle with its full implementation) was, "Drop the ball for all it matters." He's right, quite frankly. Sports and games really aren't particularly important. What's important are matters of real right and real wrong. When he could do something to affect such matters directly, he did.

Once me Pops, his oldest son and a big baseball fan early on, was promised by a neighbor that he'd take Dad to the Tiger game the coming Sunday. Pops was excited, as a kid and baseball fan would be. He was 10 or 11 at the time. He looked forward to Sunday, to see Tiger Stadium and watch his beloved Bengals play in person. We've all been there, all felt that rush of excitement when as kids nirvana was promised. Dad was really looking forward to that game.

Sunday came, and the neighbor backed out. He had decided that he just didn't want to go after all. Pops had approached the guy on the street that morning, who told him, basically, some other time kid. Pops was crushed. So ya know what Joe did?

He took his son to the Tiger game that day. You know why he did that? Because you don't promise something like that to a kid and then back out for no good reason. You. Do. Not.

To my knowledge, that was the only baseball game, and likely the only sporting event ever, Grandpa Joe went to. He did that because he was a bigger man than that jerk neighbor. You don't promise a kid something important to a kid and renig. You just don't. Joe knew that. And I don't doubt his son's respect for him grew from such things.

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