Baseball Toaster Dodger Thoughts
Jon Weisman's outlet
for dealing psychologically
with the Los Angeles Dodgers
and baseball.
Frozen Toast
Google Search
Dodger Thoughts

02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

12  11  10  09  08  07 
06  05  04  03  02  01 

09  08  07 
About Jon
Thank You For Not ...

1) using profanity or any euphemisms for profanity
2) personally attacking other commenters
3) baiting other commenters
4) arguing for the sake of arguing
5) discussing politics
6) using hyperbole when something less will suffice
7) using sarcasm in a way that can be misinterpreted negatively
8) making the same point over and over again
9) typing "no-hitter" or "perfect game" to describe either in progress
10) being annoyed by the existence of this list
11) commenting under the obvious influence
12) claiming your opinion isn't allowed when it's just being disagreed with

A Base Path
2004-05-06 09:24
by Jon Weisman

This morning's goal was a lucid and level-headed response to the news that Major League Baseball will promote Spider-Man 2 with ads on its bases. At first, I was just going to write one and only one paragraph:

If I go to see that movie, and the big screen cuts away from Tobey Maguire to give me live updates on the Dodger game going on that night, then I guess that's fair enough.

That sounded good to me for a while. Unfortunately, two wrongs don't make a right, do they?

I want to avoid being sanctimonious on this issue, from either end. Of course, you'd prefer that advertising did not encroach on baseball. And of course, baseball has a right to let it.

Baseball is an easy target because it retains a dream of purity, but the world is a sloppy place, getting sloppier by the day. It's little more than the principle of entropy at work. In the comic, Zits, this week, Mom is arranging his clothes drawer "by season, style and color" while the contents of her son's backpack explode into a trash pile all over his bedroom. There are two forces at work, and the cleansing force is up against it.

That dream of purity in baseball - professional baseball, anyway - has always been a myth, both on the narrow level of advertising at the ballpark, which has existed for more than a century, as well as the more unseemly ugliness - racism, etc. - that permeated the game at its roots. I love that myth, and fool myself that it's gospel whenever I can, but a myth is what it is.

Am I against the Spiderman 2 ads on the bases? Damn straight I am. They take us further down the slippery, sloppy slope. But they don't grab me in the gut. Man, I've just seen a lot worse. Stadium music at 200 decibels is worse. The designated hitter is worse.

The decision to allow advertising on the bases is a turn of the odometer on baseball's entropic road trip. It's a dubiously chosen fashion statement designed to get attention - a tattoo on pretty, freckled skin. I hate tattoos - but too many people like them.

I wish baseball wouldn't run ads on its bases. Not because I think this puts us on the path away from beauty, but because it reflects that we're already on the path away from beauty.

I wish baseball wouldn't run ads on its bases. But I wish a lot of things.

Update, 5 p.m.: Wishes come true. Some protests work. The bases have been freed.

Comment status: comments have been closed. Baseball Toaster is now out of business.