Anyone out there (besides EL's Farrior) smart enough to know what they don't know?
Little League stories often invite sorrow, what with the poor kids held hostage by sniveling parents who may be well meaning, but whose self-indulgence invokes images of the Eiffel Tower: You have to admire it for its size.
And now comes another Little League story that engenders more weeping ... only this time with tears of joy.
In an otherwise straightforward piece here in The Day last week about the obstacles imperiling Little League's return for 2020, comes a quote from a local man that nearly made me cue Handel's Hallelujah Chorus.
"I don't know what to think right now. We're so reactionary," East Lyme Little League president Joel Farrior said. "I can't make a decision until I know what the town tells us what we can do. They can't make a decision until the governor tells them what to do."
Holy humanity, Batman. You mean people like this still exist? There are still people walking among us who know what they don't know? And are willing to admit it publicly instead of pathetic political posturing?
"I'm not a health professional," Farrior said. "We are going to have to go by the guidelines Mr. (Mark) Nickerson (first selectman) and Mr. (Dave) Putnam (parks and recreation director) give to us. ... These kids are going to need something. They need something structured and fun. With the Little League World Series canceled, we'll hold on as long as we can to ensure our kids have something. I'm a glass-half-full kind of guy."
Sorry. But I'm having a moment. You'll have to talk amongst yourselves briefly. Topic: Responsible adulting. Discuss. ...
Four words come to mind: Bless you, Joel Farrior. And thank you. We needed that. I was just about to draw the conclusion that we'd become an entire country of obtuse independent contractors, so full of ourselves that the needs, cares and concerns of others had become what gathers at the bottom of the bird cage.
Fact is, very few of us are health care professionals. We don't know our mask from our elbow. And yet look around. Who knew so many dime store epidemiologists were ready to bloom? Alexander Pope should go to the window and collect all over again for coming up with "a little learning is a dangerous thing" only 309 years ago.
The masses may give Little League a dismissive wave, yet its condition mirrors many other endeavors that cry out for a restart. Farrior's assertions — we're so reactionary ... I'm not a health care professional ... we just don't know yet ... but we remain hopeful ... should be required reading for everyone.
I mean everyone. That includes the maskless mavens of mutiny protesting their God given right to trust, justice, the American way and their unyielding freedom to hit the beach, by golly. And to the finger-pointers from both sides of the aisle who find some perverse solace in finger-pointing. Speaking of finger pointing: Bet we never thought those old school caricatures of Uncle Sam pointing his finger were unwitting foreshadowing for the nincompoops we've become.
When in doubt, blame somebody else. Point the finger.
We've become like the old TV commercial about Miller Lite. Half the people going "tastes great!" Half going "less filling!" And the joke's on them because, well, it's still Miller Lite: watered down, not very good and hardly the best choice.
Yet we point anyway. Because it generates attention, if nothing else.
My idealism makes me wonder why we couldn't use our time more constructively. Like the kid I saw on the news the other night from East Catholic High in Manchester. He conspired with his friends to create a website linking businesses in need with volunteers willing to help. Now THAT is moving us forward.
But then we must remember: That requires effort, ingenuity, esprit de corps and the actual willingness to help. It's just not as much fun as the cheap shot artistry we are perfecting.
I hope the Joel Farriors out there are the silent majority. But I wonder. Seems all we hear from now are the aggrieved and morally outraged who must be right, have the last word, point fingers and keep us swimming in the morass rather than lead us out of it.
But, what the heck. I'll echo Farrior's thoughts:
I'm not a health care professional.
I have to go by guidelines.
I'm a glass half full kind of guy.
Blame assessment is like the one-out bunt: utterly useless.
This is the opinion of Day sports columnist Mike DiMauro
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