The Old Ball Game

Prayers NYTFollowing the Mets’ sweep of the Cubs last week, The New York Times’ Dan Barry prepared a clever page one (sports section) story written in old-school, 1908 prose style. Can you imagine Barry (and his headline writer) using a calculus to come up with key concepts that reflect a century-distant past? ‘What words and phrases were popular in 1908, but would be quaint, although recognizable, today?’ Scouting (‘Boys’ Life’*), references to classical mythology (Sisyphean), and prayer made the cut.

Just the day before the final game of the NLCS, the online magazine ‘Acculturated’ (which explores the virtues and vices of pop culture and why pop culture matters) published a story about Pray4Mets, a reported decline of prayer in American society over time, and certain leaders’ discomfort and confusion about public expression of things considered religious.

Watching that last game of Mets vs. Cubs, I witnessed more Chicago Cubs fans in the stands with their hands clasped, or pressed together, fingers pointed skyward, than in any other stadium this year. Admittedly, there was more on the line than in the prior six months. But, thank goodness, at this very American game, the fans enjoyed the very old-fashioned, American freedom to express themselves in this way. As we’ve explored at Pray4Mets, it was all they could do.

I expect the 2015 World Series featuring the New York Mets and the Kansas City Royals will be intense. The teams are well matched.

So, double down and stay steady against strong winds. It’s what we can do. Down the road, in our great-grandchildren’s time, someone may write, ‘remember those Pray4Mets folks, doing their part in the 2015 World Series?’ Let’s keep going, Mets.

Send your thoughts and prayers to pray4mets@gmail.com.

Maureen Edelson

Montclair, New Jersey

Early Poster Cheering Crowds

*although the first edition of Boys’ Life was published in 1911.

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