July 14, 2006

Only the Good K Young

When I spotted the headline the other day on ESPN.com: "Man, 83, K's in Pro At-Bat," I immediately thought the worst. Oh my God, some poor old bastard died playing baseball. You see, in briefly skimming past the headline and ascertaining that there was an 83-year-old and baseball involved, I momentary mistook the verb "K" to mean "die." And can you really blame me? Of course we all know that to "K" is to strike out, but given the context, wouldn't it be logical to assume that an 83-year-old playing in a pro baseball game would probably die? Or at the very least, you wouldn't think it would be newsworthy to include in the headline that he struck out. Of course he struck out -- he's 83! That's almost 12 dog years. At age 12 I would wager most dogs cannot swing a baseball bat without dying.

So I guess my point is, the headline really should have been: "Man, 83, Appears in Pro Baseball Game," and it safely be assumed that a) he struck out, and b) he did not die. By including the verb "K's," you've not only brought the nation's attention to the fact that this old codger can't catch up to a fastball, but you've momentarily given me quite a scare in thinking he had died.

A couple other groundbreaking thoughts to share on this Friday:
  • In a turn of events that proves beyond all doubt that the Major League Baseball All-Star break is one of the most dismally slow 72-hour windows of time adorning the House of Sport, the other night I was at an establishment that was showing the WNBA All-Star Game. And I watched some of it. The event primarily caught my attention in the final seconds, when everyone got the hell out of the way so that Michelle Snow could attempt to prove to the skeptics out there once again that women actually can dunk. On her first attempt, a circular piece of orange metal (which looked suspiciously like the rim) jumped up at the last minute to stuff the ball back in her face. Undeterred, she made a second try, and came through with a kind of decent-looking reverse that could either have been a triumphant moment or a complete disgrace, depending on where you stand on the issue, except that the issue became null and void when a player on the other team (not sure who) picked up the ball, ran down court and tried to throw down a full speed dunk of her own only to be feebly rim-checked as time expired. Probably not a moment that will be ending up on too many WNBA promotional videos.
  • In some news that doesn't exactly have to do with sports but does involve a remarkable feat of hand-eye coordination and courage, a 61-year-old German man on trial for theft somehow managed to steal a set of keys from the judge trying him while standing face-to-face with said judge at the bench. And the judge didn't even notice until later. Incredible. A little known fact -- there is legal precedent in Germany for situations in which accused criminals show criminal abilities so far above those of their peers that the judge will immediately dismiss the case and place the criminal in a program for gifted criminals. Actually, that's not true. But if it were my courtroom I think I would be inclined to cut the guy a break just because I'd be so damn impressed. Which is one of the many reasons (my lack of a law degree and my inability to speak German also being among them) that I am not currently under consideration for a judiciary position in Germany.


Blogger jimmyrad said...

Everything is an at-bat to the baseball fan. Hitting on a girl? You usually strike out. Impress your future boss in a job interview? You hit a homerun.

Life is just the biggest at-bat, and dying is just your final K. So I agree with your assessment of the headline.

Very funny sidenotes, too.

12:54 PM, July 15, 2006  
Anonymous Aimee Berg said...

Thank you for not mentioning me by name in your past two posts. I wouldn't want people to think we were hanging out.

6:20 PM, July 15, 2006  
Blogger Frank G Yak said...

I agree with Jimmy Rad's post. K'ing is more than just striking out. K'ing is a verb that can be used in many a situation.

Just a note Point Break is on in Jerusalem right now, Jonny Utah takes the holy land.

11:34 AM, July 16, 2006  
Blogger The OCC said...

Just when I thought I understood the meaning of the verb "k," you all have gone and confused me. Kind of leaving me feeling like I just got the old proverbial "backwards k," if you will.

Jerusalem in the house!

11:57 PM, July 16, 2006  
Blogger jmals said...

And at first read, I thought your article was about how someone, somehow (certainly not an NL closer), struck out the deft Michael Young. Inconceivable!

4:06 PM, July 21, 2006  

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