Through intermediaries, we were provided this missive from Judge Hirsch about Baseball and The Cubs.
Starting last night, and continuing this morning, well-intentioned friends have gone out of their way to express their condolences to me, as if I had had a death in the family. I try to show appreciation for their support, but I explain to them that we really had a wonderful baseball season: my Cubs played 162 games, 81 of them in beautiful Wrigley Field; we won almost 100 of them; and we came in second in all the rest. The ivy was green, the sky was blue, and as long as we kept the rally alive in the bottom of the ninth, the game was never over.
I reproduce below the soliloquy I consider a close second to Hamlet's middle soliloquy. Surely it was written with Wrigley Field in mind. May it tide you over till next spring training. And until then, remember: WAIT TILL NEXT YEAR!
"People will come, Ray. They'll come to Iowa for reasons they can't even fathom. They'll turn up your driveway not knowing for sure why they're doing it. They'll arrive at your door as innocent as children, longing for the past. Of course, we don't mind if you look around, you'll say. It's only $20 per person. They'll pass over the money without even thinking about it: for it is money they have and peace they lack.
"And they'll walk out to the bleachers; sit in shirtsleeves on a perfect afternoon. They'll find they have reserved seats somewhere along one of the baselines, where they sat when they were children and cheered their heroes. And they'll watch the game and it'll be as if they dipped themselves in magic waters. The memories will be so thick they'll have to brush them away from their faces.
"People will come, Ray. One constant through all the years, Ray, has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It has been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field; this game; it's a part of our past, Ray. It reminds us of all that once was good and could be again. Oh ... people will come Ray. People will most definitely come."