Littlefield: Seasons And Sports

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The long MLB season features plenty of weather changes. (Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)
The long MLB season features plenty of weather changes. (Gregory Shamus/Getty Images)

The stormy winter snow days and the languid summer nights,
The brisk, bright days of fall and spring, each with their own delights…
I wish our games conformed to them, Each to its proper season.
They don’t, as you well know. You also probably know the reason.
See, I’ve in mind the seasons of the games that fill the time
Beginning when we’re children, then enveloping our prime
And bearing us like gentle waves into the those dimming days
When all the games are shrouded in a sleepy sort of haze.
There’s no break in those seasons. Ask the players. They’ll confess
That they are often more worn out than fans would ever guess.

For baseball starts when it’s still snowing, peaks in heat, and then
Concludes with a post-season when you might see snow again.
And hockey? It’s a game for fall, and spring, and summer, too…
For they’ve not crowned a champion, and by the time they do,
The lilacs in the dooryard will have bloomed and also croaked,
And by the time the victory cigars have all been smoked,
The players will have taken up their sticks and pads and skates…
And will there be skim ice on puddles, let alone the lakes?

No, there will not. No way. And meanwhile, basketball, as well,
Will already be well beyond its season’s opening bell,
And churning through the many nights before its long post-season
Presents to all its many fans a half-convincing reason
To watch. Hey, I’m no idiot. I write about this stuff.
Perhaps if games were fewer there would not be near enough
For me and others like me to present to all of you…
And if that were the case, I do not know what I would do.

But that’s beside a point that should resound with any fan:
The leagues present too many games because they know they can!
But wouldn’t they be better if there weren’t quite so many?
And might not we be happier if some nights there weren’t any?
And what about the players? They’d be healthier by far
And whether substitute or starter, second-string or star,
They’d be more likely to provide each fan in every seat
A product worth the price, which would be way up north of neat.
Perhaps we’d get more exercise, and eat less junk food, too.
Who knows if games were fewer what fine things we all might do?
We’d have more time for music, hobbies, reading and all sorts
Of various delights that aren’t at all involved with sports.

Headshot of Bill Littlefield

Bill Littlefield Host, Only A Game
Bill Littlefield was the host of Only A Game from 1993 until 2018.



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