Sunday, May 6, 2012

A Birthday Wish

Today is my 35th birthday.

So it occurred to me this morning, my life is halfway over, or close to it barring any unforeseen lightning strikes or semi-truck collisions. And it dawned on me that in the couple years I’ve been writing this site, sure I’ve hopefully provided some laughs. Maybe I’ve (gasp) even occasionally offered some insight into the Tigers and the game of baseball. But I haven’t done any real good for our National Pastime. I’d like to attempt to change that today.

I’ve been watching baseball and the Tigers for around 27 years now. In that time, I’ve seen our game survive atrocities such as performance enhancing drugs, gambling controversies, and Don Kelly batting leadoff. But one stain on the sport has not been addressed by the media and/or Bud Selig and I think it continues to tarnish the game of baseball on a daily basis. It must be stopped.

I speak, of course, of “The Wave”.
I attended yesterday’s Tiger loss to the White Sox at Comerica Park. And in the innings leading up to, and during Papa Grande’s epic fail to Adam Dunn, many people were not watching the wonderful pitcher’s duel between Max Scherzer and Gavin Floyd. They were not cheering on Mr. Valverde's Todd Jones impersonation. No, in between getting out of their seats every inning to go do Cobb knows what, asking who “Pierzynski” is, talking nonstop on their cell phones, and laughing about the spelling of Jhonny Peralta’s first name (every f’ing time he came up), people were trying to start the dreaded Wave.

I hate The Wave more than the act of setting newborn puppies on fire. I don’t understand the point of it. Many cities and teams claim they are the origin of the silly fan activity, as you can read about here. Of course, Boston is atop the list. But why are so many so willing to take credit for a pointless, boring activity that causes so much potential disaster. For example…

-Encouraging drunken frat boys in Inge jerseys to stand, spill beer all over, and yell “Ready, 1, 2, Wooooo!”.

-Mocking the unfortunate in wheelchairs that cannot participate in The Wave.

-Making fat girls in Boesch jerseys stand with their arms extended and expose their ill-conceived tramp stamps.

-Blocking the view of a one run game in the ninth inning from the seven people in the park that are there to watch baseball.

And so on.

I could go on for days here about my hatred of the wave. But instead, I leave with you one final birthday plea from Your Party Host.

As much as I appreciate people saying “Happy Birthday”, writing on my Facebook wall instead of having to actually call me to say two words, or the ever popular, but rarely seen, birthday pity hand job, I urge you to PLEASE stop the wave. Tell a friend. Explain it to your children. Write your Congressperson. Do whatever it takes. Do it for me. Do it for you. Do it for the game itself.

The Wave must be destroyed.

I beg of you.

14 comments:

JimWalewander said...

Happy birthday, Rogo.  I'd have called, but, you know...

JimWalewander said...

(And thanks for all the laughs)

KalineCountry said...

Rogo, I left the same at our Tigers sports forum, but again a Happy Birthday to you...and hope you get your wish about the wave.
Keep having the birthdays....it beats the alternative.
and thanks for all the laughs and on those occasions great insight.

Gibby23 said...

My daughters and I attended what should have been JV's 25th win last year--my six year old actually asked the drunken women in front of us to please sit down and be quiet because she was trying to watch the game.  One of the women said (loudly) to the other that they didn't understand the "big deal" about the game.  My daughter explained that JV was trying to get his 25th win and that it was a "super important" game because the last time it had happened was in 1990.  The people around us started clapping, which led to the exit of the women.  Thought I'd share that with you for a belated birthday gift. :)

SRogo said...

 Awesome.

Kevin C. said...

The wave is neither original, funny, creative or enlightening. Why it is so fascinating for the drunks is beyond me. I agree with you, it needs to be stopped. It is very irritating.

H2OPoloPunk said...

::stops wave::

Happy 35th. Mine is next month. 1977 rules!

JacksTigers said...

Sorry, but 1996 was when all of the cool kids were born.

Julian said...

If only people could drown in this wave. Sigh.

Jeff S said...

The Wave is one of those inexplicable idiocies of modern fan-dom.  It ranks right up there with the "(fill-in-the-blank)...SUCK!" chants that you hear at so many baseball/hockey games these days.   

As I explained to my son when he was just a young teenager (he's now 23), you will never see even a fairly knowledgeable fan participating in any chant that involves the word "sucks".  He observes this truth to this day, many years later.

NCDee said...

Can we start an internet thingy that  the wave leads to erectile dysfunction? I mean, yes it proves you're a big dick, but if it's useless....

B Ward said...

Happy Belated Rogo. Best wishes for the "ever popular, but rarely seen, birthday pity hand job"
This is why I read. lol

rings said...

The wave ceased being "cool" about 1985...egads.

William Westbrook said...

I thought the wave died 20 years ago, except ironically. I suppose this is the retro wave. It can probably be traced back to 1970s college football, but the first primitive form I saw of it in baseball -- and it seemed cute at the time -- was in Oakland, where the team made a little run under Billy Martin in 1981 (having hit bottom a couple of years before). The fans would cheer by section. People in one section would stand and raise their arms, then sit down while the next section did the same. It was more like a piston engine than a wave, and it was fun the first time. As Roger Angell wrote a few years later, in a footnote to a passage he'd written in 1981 about the charm of this Oakland cheer, he had been like a Southern gardener seeing kudzu for the first time, and thinking it was a handsome plant. Anyway, if history is repeating itself, beachballs will be next.