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Baseball -- Coordinated Men Showcase their Fast Reflexes by Swinging at Small Balls with a Wooden Stick.

Every spring, millions of Americans voluntarily pack into cramped seating areas to observe a childhood game, still played by fully-grown adults who wish to showcase their fast reflexes and ability to run between two short-distanced floor mats. The game is just that: Some men are throwing objects at other men; Some are deflecting incoming objects with hard, wooden sticks; Some are counting nearby butterflies, or whatever an outfielder normally does when waiting for a player to finally hit a ball in his direction. One may deduce that observing men play adult tee-ball for multiple hours would be boring, even a bit stale, but a baseball game is also peppered with an assortment of fantastic memories cherished by the entire family: stumbling drunkards toppling like newborn goats balancing on a greased-up bowling ball; large masses of boisterous dullards shrieking like a box of enflamed kittens; corpulent men with the same fragrance as the hotdog stand by the concessions; and the occasional soon-to-be college dropout who rationaled that it would be wise to dash across the field naked.

Baseball was inadvertently invented by a gaggle of children who succumbed to the same instincts driving a modern ape -- They began violently smacking scattered acorns around the yard with a fallen tree branch, for no purpose other than relieving boredom. Four bored children turned into nine, the minimum size of a modern baseball team, continually expanded until clusters of rivaling teams competed annually to determine who has the fastest reflexes and the quickest throwing speed. The fear of being labeled "bad parents" pressured intoxicated adults to altercate in dirty bleachers and sequester booze in tucked-away cantines to tolerate their childrens' hobby; a hobby designed to be a test of reflexes and catching ability, but generally showcases uncoordinated kids mistakenly pelting other kids with slow-moving baseballs, disappointing sons swinging eagerly at distant balls, aimed overhead or two-to-three baseball-bat-lengths to the right, and the occasional... confused... child who confidently runs clockwise because he does not quite understand the rules. Boredom -- a standard feature of modern adulthood and adolescence -- inspired some children to repeatedly re-enroll in additional seasons of smacking-balls-with-wooden-bats until they are twenty-six and unemployed, and motivated adults to periodically deplete paychecks to watch those individuals play a disinteresting game, thus satisfying our desire for quelling boredom in bizarre ways.

The rules of the game are simple. Three-to-four times per game, a player will position himself adjacent to a decorative floor mat with more anticipation for an incoming ball than Riley Reid at work. An opposing player -- preferably one with an arm bearing the acceleration of a hummingbird's wing --chucks a small ball at the awaiting player, who then attempts to whack the ball with a wooden stick. If successful, the player is authorized to run counter-clockwise around a mishappen square while nine scattered men attempt to poke him with the ball. If the player travels 120 yards back to his originating position, he receives a point and must wait an hour to try again. If he bashes the ball over a distant wall, he may slowly jog around the floor mats and collect a point, while the entire audience is forced to watch with the eagerness of waiting in traffic.

A typical game of baseball is notorious for its level of excitement, an excitement that only exists when a distracted fan gets unexpectedly pelted by a baseball, or a fight suddenly breaks out between two tipsy men who miss more hits than the players on the field, who only score a couple points per game. A vast majority of the time, viewers roost in uncomfortable chairs within close proximity of multiple obese men reeking of masticated hotdogs and cheap beer, regurgitating slurred nonsense with mustard stains spotted on their RedSox jersey. The typical excitement nearly matches the thrill of Saturday night bingo, but not quite as riveting, as bingo at least has a handful of bitter elderly couples squabbling nonsensically with opposing senior citizens; Baseball only features men swinging at balls and chewing gum.

The most entertaining moment of a baseball game is when a distracted fan -- whether from seductive Facebook feeds or general lack-of-awareness -- gets pelted by a far-flying ball, which somehow seldomly dents the foreheads of the oblivious observer. On other occasions, fans may storm inbound streets to smash bottles, war-cry incoherently, hammer opposing fans for cheering-on the wrong team, and occasionally flip police cars in frenzied celebration or disgruntled disbelief that their team lost, disregarding a lack of participation from those with tears streaming down their cheeks. Americans somehow deluded themselves into believing they belong to a team and that the success or failure of an arbitrary nine men somehow impacts their day-to-day life, occasionally inducing tears and gentle weeping when "their" team loses, even though they simply sat as silent -- or wildly obnoxious -- observers, and none of the players know who they are.

Being labeled as professional athletes, the physical requirements of being a baseball player match a forklift operator at a mid-sized distribution center. Three-to-four times per game, the player must stand in front of a plain, white floor mat to swing at incoming balls. The most exhaustive task follows a successful hit, and requires travelling the length of a CVS parking lot, spanned over ten-to-twenty minutes, to return back to home plate.

One of the most notable names in baseball history is Babe Ruth, not the candy bar, the ball-smacker. He may not have a PhD in physics or have the know-how to properly diagnose a faulty toilet, but he is remarkably efficient at smacking rapidly-approaching objects, rendering him more valuable than most hardworking individuals. Some other players are more specialized in slinging objects unlikely to be swatted, others are particularly apt at catching balls with specialized leather mittens. But one thing remains constant regardless of location on a grassy field: They make more money than teachers, firefighters, police officers, and nearly everyone else -- discounting Hollywood celebrities, business moguls, and a mid-20s female with an OnlyFans and an under-abundance of T-shirts.

Though the concept of baseball is mildly bizarre -- just a bunch of hyper-coordinated men playing a simple game -- it satisfies our need for entertainment. I do not enjoy the smell, the noise, or being outside, but even I can enjoy a pleasant evening perched in front of a team of fast-reflexed men swinging at balls and dashing across fields. I do acknowledge that baseball players are extremely athletic, and unlike my reaction time, which is only slightly faster than a three toed sloth, baseball players have the reactive acuity of a small cat. It is odd that Americans spend an exorbitant chunk of their paychecks to watch men swinging sticks and chucking balls -- but as the Roman's say: "Bread and Circuses"...


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