about baseball on wmtc

Playoffs start today! If all goes well, Allan and I will be glued to our TV and computers straight through the month of October.

For a long time, I kept wmtc nearly baseball-free. What little baseball seeped in reflected only a tiny fraction of the time I spend watching, reading about and thinking about one of my greatest passions. I assumed that many - maybe most - wmtc readers don't care about sports, and baseball seemed highly off-topic.

As time went on, wmtc became more of a personal and political blog - a whatever-interests-me blog, if you will - rather than a blog strictly about emigrating to Canada. That makes sense, as Canada is now our home, and we're well adjusted to our new lives. So as wmtc becomes more of a reflection of me, it naturally will include my love of baseball.

It's funny about sports, though. So many readers have told me they don't read the sports posts, or even left comments saying, "I'm not reading this post, because I have no interest in sports".

There's no way every post interests every reader (nor should it!), but I've never seen comments like this about other topics. When I read a favourite blog that includes posts about Harry Potter, I simply skip those posts, since I don't have an interest in Harry Potter. I also skip posts about gardening, cooking, science fiction and tech gadgetry. But I don't announce to the blogger that I don't care about Harry Potter. I just skip the posts, and if I want to comment, I do so on subjects that interest me.

It seems to me that only sports brings out this announcement of no interest in an otherwise educated and informed readership. (If I'm wrong - if you've seen similar expressions about other topics - please let me know.)

In the US, there is a real anti-sports bias among people who lean to the left politically - not merely a lack of interest, but outright disdain and contempt. I don't know if that's the case in Canada, and in any case, wtmc commenters are not a disdainful or contempuous bunch.

I don't know what's at the root of that anti-sports bias, why activists frequently bash professional sports, or crow proudly about their complete lack of knowledge of sport. Why should ignorance ever be something to boast about?

On the other hand, baseball, more than other sports in the US, attracts an intellectual and literary crowd. This is not to say that intelligent, literary people do not like football, hockey or basketball. I personally know many who do, and I can name several famous examples. But for whatever reason, in the US there is a disproportionately large number of books, stories, plays and poems written about baseball, far more than any other athletic pursuit.

Baseball also seems to attract more progressive-minded fans than other sports. I know lefties who love football, basketball, tennis, golf, and so forth. But among left-leaning Americans, it seems if there's an interest in sport, it's more likely to be baseball than any other.

I love meeting progressive-minded baseball fans; they are among my favourite people to know. It's no surprise that Allan's blog - which is my Red Sox community - attracts so many of them. His own politics are no secret (Joy of Sox used to be about both baseball and social issues), and the team represents one of the US's more liberal areas.

Over time, the small overlap between Joy Of Sox and wmtc has grown. More citizens of Joy Nation are likely to take a peek at wmtc, and some are regular readers. I love that.

So while there's no danger of wmtc becoming a baseball blog, I've come to realize that there's no reason to exclude one of the central passions of my life from my own blog.

Here's to the 2007 Red Sox, and here's to October.

If you'd like to share some of the excitement, our friend Jere attended last week's clinching game (not by accident, but by long-term thinking and well-planned design). His story and photos from the night are a real treat.

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