Perhaps now - after the dirge-like playing of "Take Me Out to the Ball Game," Dee Gordon's first-pitch homage from the right-handed batter's box (followed by his surreal, Ruthian home run), the circling of the mound following the 7 to 3 win, the caps left behind in loving tribute - the Marlins will win back South Florida's sports fans. God knows they deserve them.
The death of a young person is always tragic, mercilessly cutting short a potentially long life. In the case of the Marlins pitcher, it was a life of fame and glory, still unrealized potential and almost fathomless fun. He brought to baseball an enthusiasm and exuberance that had not been seen since the debut of Willie Mays (in the days before the pastime was turned into big business). This is why his death hurts so much; we mourn not just for the great athlete struck down in his prime but for the uncommon joy that has been taken from the game.
American Airlines says that a good flyer asks before pushing the window shade up. My problem is with people who pull it down, especially for takeoffs and landings. We'll see what happens tonight when we fly to Copenhagen, and then connect to Warsaw. Though for the second flight I'm going to try to get a window seat, even though I now see it puts me in a delicate position. Sitting on the aisle, one is less burdened with ethical dilemmas.
I'll be back here on the 23rd.
In the August 6 issue, between an analysis of Brexit and a Matthew Parris column on the importance of the Bible, one finds this headline: "My wild success: Hedgehogs, and other joys of a carefully messy garden."
Oh, and there's also a Diary by Geoff Dyer. (I so want to add a 'y' to his surname.)