The Secret Ingredient is Baseball


When your team heroically rallies/falters in the last inning and you put your fist through the wall in celebration/fury, is there somebody right beside you, putting their own holes in the wall/quivering in terror at the prospect of yet another evening in your home?

Either way, you could be the recipient/victim of MLB’s latest sweepstakes… just for being in love!

Like that chuckling couple battling their way through an explosion of hearts will tell you, love and baseball go together like a carefully chosen, photogenic interracial couple.  Why not enhance the intensity of your romance with a lily-white sun hat and an immediate wedding within the friendly confines of Phoenix, Arizona?

All that’s required of you and your loving/terrified partner is a short video demonstrating why you are the most deserving pair of baseball fans.  And, as luck would have it, I’ve taken the liberty of penning you a script.  Just add love, and… voila!  Your dream wedding awaits you.


You, seated on a bench swing amongst the gentle, dreamlike sways of wheat in the breeze.  You are dressed in the uniform of your favorite player, gazing at the sundrenched landscape.  After several moments, you notice the camera.

You:  Oh, hello there!  I was just thinking about America.

You stand up, begin walking toward camera, which dollies backward.

You:  You know, a lot has been said about baseball in recent years; it needs instant replay, too many players are using illegal drugs, Alex Rodriguez is a fucking douche, why does Bud Selig look he’s dead, etc.  But people often forget how baseball first began:  with love.

It was with love that Abner Doubleday first created the game; it was with love that his wife accepted his ideas as more than just spewing crazy from the mouth of a dangerous alcoholic.  Let’s watch, why don’t we, as we re-live that magical day in our nation’s history.

A somewhat primitive looking stage is set up in the middle of wheat field, which we pan over to, revealing two stage actors dressed in old-timey clothes.  These are ABNER DOUBLEDAY and his WIFE.

Abner:  Damn it, Jenny!  The tax collector came by our shack again today.  He said we owe $14 this year!  Remember, this is a long time ago, so that’s a lot of money.

Jenny:  Times like this make me wish you didn’t have such a debilitating drinking problem.

Abner throws dishes from a table to the floor.

Abner:  Gaaah, I’m so drunk.  But it’s the only way to kill the pain from that war I fought in, lo those many years ago.

Both Abner and Jenny look into the distance, having war flashbacks.

Abner:  Anyways, we need some kind of solution to that problem I introduced at the beginning of the scene.

Jenny:  Have you seen the kids?  I hope they aren’t outside playing rockball again.

Abner:  What is… ‘rockball’?

Jenny:  Why, its that game they invented where they find rocks in our wheat field and hurl them at each other while trying to fend off their opponents’ throws with stems of wheat.

Abner:  What a compelling concept.  Perhaps if I used my powerful adult brain to retool that idea…

Narrator:  “And so, Abner Doubleday overcame his drinking problem and invented baseball that very day, out of love for his family.”

You walk back on screen, nodding sagely.

You:  Yes, it was love all along that created the sport that we… that we love.  But if you don’t want to hear that from me, take it from Kevin Costner.

KEVIN COSTNER enters from off screen and shakes Your hand.

Kevin Costner:  Hi, I’m Kevin Costner, self-proclaimed official cinematic auteur of baseball and director of that award-winning play you just watched.

You:  Hi, Kevin.

Kevin:  That’s “Mr. Costner.”  (Mr. Costner demands this be in the script)

Mr. Costner leans on tree that seems to have come from nowhere.

Mr. Costner:  I can honestly say there is nothing better than capturing America’s past time through the majesty of film and theater.  Sure, we may take liberties with the sport–for example, I have no evidence that Abner Doubleday had a drinking problem, or even invented baseball.  But that’s what love does to us.  It intoxicates our senses, creating a cloud of pollution so thick and impenetrable, we don’t even realize what we’re doing may be perceived as “silly,” “insane,” or “in direct violation of a restraining order.”

Your husband/wife joins you on screen with Mr. Costner and the actors who portrayed the Doubledays.  Everyone is nodding and smiling as the music swells.

Abner:  I can only hope that one day the game I invented culminates in the union of two lifelong fans in Phoenix, Arizona.

You:  Me too, Abner.  Me too.