And now that my temper is up, I may as well go on and abuse every body I can think of.
– Mark Twain, Innocents Abroad
Yeah, I know I used that same quote just a month or two ago, but it’s one of my all-time favorites.
And it’s perfect for a post in which, having ranted about one of my chief peeves just moments ago, I let loose on another one.
Look at the photo above, from the Washington Post iPad app. (Here’s the story it goes with.) See anything wrong with it?
Yeah, it’s a good action photo, the player seeming to float in the air as he runs the bases.
But I can’t enjoy it because I can’t stop thinking, When he lands, he’s liable to trip on his pants.
Yeah, I know — ballplayers have been wearing their pants like this for a long time. Rather than wear proper knicker-length pants, with the team-color stirrup showing over their socks, their pants legs go all the way to the tops of their shoes, and too often, beyond.
And it just looks stupid. Almost as stupid as wearing a ballcap with the brim artificially flat as a mathematical plane, instead of curled like a hyperbola, the way God and Abner Doubleday intended. It’s so unbelievably uncool. Like some clueless alien trying to dress like a ballplayer to pass as an earthling, and failing miserably. Players who do that look like dorks. It makes them look, well, like this. It makes me wonder, What are these people’s heads shaped like? (And yeah, I know it comes from hip-hop culture, but I don’t care — it’s definitively uncool.)
But there’s something especially awful about this particular photo, something that justifies my bringing this up again: That’s Bryce Harper, No. 34 for the Washington Nationals. Bryce Harper is known for being one of the few present-day ballplayers who still wears knickers and stirrups!
So this is a particular betrayal of tradition, and all that is right and true about the game.
Maybe it’s temporary, maybe it’s some playoff superstition thing; I don’t know. But I’m deeply disappointed. I mean, this was supposed to be a guy who gets it….
I know it won’t do any good, but I had to say something. Again. I just hate to see it.
Now, all of you kids — get offa my infield!