I guess this is where I'm supposed to say that sports are pointless now, as useless as a doily on an aircraft carrier. But that's not how I feel. Actually, I think that sports can be more important than ever in gluing us back together.
Let's hope, now that sports are in perspective, we keep them there. No more of those celebration riots or naming your kid Sosa or breaking up with your fianc�e over the infield-fly rule. Sports can be smaller now, purer, the dessert cart on the menu of life, not the whole meal.
We're all in this together, so let's hope taunting becomes extinct. And booing and clipboard-smashing and head-hunting. Let's hope the terrorists' attacks will put an end to the look-at-me chest thumps after a two-yard gain. Pal, unless you went up a flaming skyscraper when the rest of the world was coming down, we don't want to hear about it.
Let's hope television stations start showing the playing of The Star-Spangled Banner again. They can run another Crazy Eddie Stereorama Blowout ad some other time. Also, is it too much to ask our athletes to stop scratching, spitting and jogging in place during the anthem?
Let's hope Upper Deck comes out with a line of fireman and policeman trading cards. O.K., I'll give you two Mark McGwires and a Roger Clemens for one Father Judge, deal?
Let's hope professional athletes learn something from six-year-old soccer players and shake hands with one another after games, win or lose. Hell, make a human tunnel if you want. Orange slices for everybody.
Let's hope the first golf commentator to call a putt "courageous" gets his mousse taken away for a month.
Let's hope Soldier Field stays Soldier Field, instead of becoming Samsung Stadium or Volkswagen Presents Soldier Field. Philadelphia is planning to build a new baseball park. Instead of another Pepsi Place or Conglomerate.com Stadium, how about Freedom Park?
Now that the World Series could run into November, when it's going to be colder than the smile on a DMV clerk, how about we finally move the games back to the afternoon, so our kids can watch them? Another thing: I don't care how baseball does it—whether the players have to settle for one less Benz or the owners for one less Lear—but let's skip the strike this time around. Baseball has a duty to play.
It's hard to believe these words are coming out of my mouth, but it'd be sweet if we could have another Subway Series, just for the sheer joy it would bring New Yorkers. I'm a changed man. I love Yankees fans now. Please, put a hair in my soup. Grunt directions at me. Sell me rings that turn my fingers green. I know who you really are underneath. By the way, you think John Rocker knows now, too?