Sunday, August 13, 2006

Dome Pondering Import - Big Mac's Undeserved Hall Attack

With the recent induction of the 2006 class into the Baseball Hall of Fame, the focus turned towards next year and it's interesting nominees. Up for induction is Cal Ripken. Consecutive game record, pioneer offensive shortstop and all around classy guy. He is a lock. Also up for induction is Tony Gywnn. Unbelievable hitter and outstanding humanitarian around the game. He, is also a lock. There are many others who are debatable, however, a third man was amongst this inevitable hall of fame group and was also considered a "lock". That man was Mark McMgwire. After the remarkable 98' season and his superman-like effort of resurrecting baseball post-strike, his legacy and image has been tarnished by what else - steroids. The following is a piece written for a sport management class regarding McGwire's bid for the Hall.

Our World Has Changed

Terrorism...


February 26th, 1993.

World Trade Center bombed.

Severe building damage. Towers remain intact.

6 dead. 1,000 severly injured.


July 26th, 1994.

London, England.

Israeli Embassy Attack.

Car-bomb wounded twenty - including children.


March 20th, 1995.

Tokyo Subway System.

Sarin Gas Attack.

12 dead. 6000 severly injured.


April 19th, 1995.

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Federal Building-bombed.

168 dead. 19 of them, children.

Largest domestic terrorist attack in U.S. history.


November 11th, 1995.

Colombo, Sri Lanka.

Suicide bombing. U.S. army headquarters.

15 dead.


February 25th - March 4th, 2006.

Series of four suicide bombings.

60 dead. 284 wounded.


July 27th, 1996.

Atlanta, Georgia.

Centennial Olympic Park. Bombed.

1 dead. 111 wounded.


February 24th, 1997.

Empire State Building.

Man opens fire. Claims U.S. is "enemy of palestine".

13 dead. Many more wounded.


August 7th, 1998.

U.S. Embassy bombings. Tanzania and Kenya.

225 dead. 4,000 injured.


October 12th, 2000.

USS Cole bombed.

Aden, Yemen.

17 dead. 40 injured.


September 11th, 2001.

World Trade Center & U.S. Pentagon.

Hi-jacked planes crash into landmark.

Towers collapse.

2,997 dead. Many injured.



World changes forever...


April 11th, 2002.

Tunisia.

Truck driven into synagogue. Filled with gas and explosives.

20 dead. 80 injured.


October 2002.

Baltimore - Washington region.

Snipers prey on civilians.

10 dead.


May 12th, 2003.

Saudi Arabia.

U.S. expatriate houses bombed.

26 dead. 160 injured.


March 11th, 2004.

Madrid, Spain.

Coordinated bombings of trains.

191 dead. 1500 injured.


July 7th, 2005.

London, England.

Bombs explode on double-decker bus and three underground trains.

56 dead. 700 injured.



And recently...


August 10th, 2006.

London, England.

Multiple plane attack foiled.


Terrorism...
Religion. Fear.Death.Life.Good.War.Nations.Extremists.Evil. Civilians.Land.

So many words, so many feelings. With the recent plot to blow up American bound planes throughout the Atlantic Ocean, the world is once again altered due to terrorism. Security is tight, governments are uneasy, international intelligence is in high gear and people are worried. One thing is for sure our world has changed.

Despite the history of terrorism going back to the 19th century, post 9/11 put things in perspective.

Certain things that some how, some way, cannot be put into words.

Terrorism...our world has changed.

History of Terrorsim ---->http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_terrorist_incidents

Friday, August 04, 2006

The Unpredictable Destiny Road

Destiny.

It is a term so often used by many to describe their goal in the midst of facing adversity and hardship. It is a phrase that is so often described as an event which is so predictable, it's outcome seems inevitable and just. It is a word, so frequently used with arrogance and egotism, that it's essence of a meaning has been diminished by man's overused and self-absorbed thinking.

According to dictionary.com, "Destiny" is defined as, "A predetermined course of events considered as something beyond human control". The meaning supports the claim that there is a path already set in which an individual's life will follow. A path so surely set in stone, that there is no getting around it. Whether the outcome is one of success or failure, Destiny is so overpowering, that it bares no mercy on it's victims.

Destiny. A clear cut term. Very black and white in it's existence. Either it is, or it isn't. To be, or not to be.

Or is it?

In an article of an old issue of Men's Journal, a few men described losses in their careers and lives which they deemed as being "uncontrollable". The stories varied from men losing millions of dollars to the women of their dreams under terms so "opposing" that they were convinced that it was their "fate". The reasons were so evident of a lack of effort in their losses, that it questioned the dignity of being a man. That's another topic for another day. Nonetheless, to fulfill your imagination, this article was indeed as ridiculous as it sounded. It is as it sounds, a group of guys loathing over their misfortunes throughout the years. However, despite the sense of "cry babies" spewing off the pages, there are indeed people throughout the nation who share this particular mindset regarding the road of life. As a matter of fact, you the reader might believe there are aspects in your life that are just so convincing, that it is the way things were spelled out for you. So strong that it's well...your destiny, right?

Wrong.

That mindset is farce that plagues mankind to it's core.

The enigma that is destiny is indeed a authentic concept. Destiny, is derived from "devine intervention" which holds a higher power responsible for everything that occurs. Yes, I believe this is true, and that there is a God which holds these powers. Yes, I do believe that we are meant to do and be specific things in our own respective lives. Yes, I do believe things happen for a reason. However, I fail to understand how a person can look at a situation and decipher it's ultimate meaning for you're life. After all, our lives are like a masterpiece painting - completed in sections. Only when those parts are completed, is the enitre painting seen. Yet, we don't see things that way.

If I can't, then I will never.

If I lose this, then it's gone for good.

If I don't achieve this, then it's over.

These are our thoughts on "Destiny". So short spanned, so compact that it almosts robs the adventure that is life. An adventure that was once thought to be robbed for a little boy. A boy who was born with club feet. The little boy, born to a former starving boxer and a loving mother was in rare form at birth. Such a rare form that doctors proclaimed that the weak ligament, surgically repaired feet of the little boy would cost him any oppurtunity at "ever playing contact sports". The boy would play pick up sports throughout his adolescant years in pain. Ignoring the pain, he made his High School team. Finally, despite bad knees and "uneducated" feet, the boy somehow worked his way onto his college baseball team. Despite continuing with pain, he overcame odds that were against him during his time.

The little boy was me.

Was it destiny?

Maybe.

Blessing?

Very much so.

Despite the odds of me playing contact sports being pretty low, I was able to experience that joy through the grace of God. I could've whined about it (Like the guys in the article) and used it as an excuse, but there was more in store for me. There is more in store for me. My painting isn't finished.

Destiny is a broad term. Colorful in it's existence. Whether it is or isn't, you'll have to just wait and see.