The Ballpark: A Paradise Into Which Evil Comes

By |2019-03-28T14:22:11-05:00March 28th, 2019|

The ballpark is a paradise into which evil does occasionally come, whenever the Yankees are in town, and this occasionally lends the game a cosmic significance that it would not be improper to call “apocalyptic.” This, in fact, is why that dastardly franchise is a spiritually necessary part of the game in this country; even [...]

Tolerance or Respect?

By |2018-12-31T22:14:14-05:00December 31st, 2018|

Respect is (1) an alternative to tolerance and (2) the better one. It is an alternative because it concerns the same issue: how to live with fellow humans who appear to be identically constituted in their need to formulate opinions and to assert them in speech (not always in that order) but disparately developed in [...]

“A Compass That Will Not Lie”

By |2018-11-30T12:58:56-05:00November 30th, 2018|

"I shall no longer ask myself if this or that is expedient, but only if it is right. I shall do this, not because I am noble or unselfish, but because life slips away, and because I need for the rest of my journey a star that will not play false to me, a compass [...]

Is Classical Music a Dying Tradition?

By |2018-08-29T12:45:19-05:00August 29th, 2018|

If Mozart and Wagner and Puccini and Respighi are “dead art,” I would suggest we’ve forgotten how to properly live. In an age of brainless media that celebrates victims, some of us actually seem to believe that we are the victims of a Eurocentric musical repertoire iconographic of phallocentric imperialism and repression. As if [...]

Books Are Not Dead Things

By |2018-08-11T18:42:04-05:00August 12th, 2018|

Books are not absolutely dead things, but do contain a potency of life in them to be as active as that soul was whose progeny they are; nay, they do preserve as in a vial the purest efficacy and extraction of that living intellect that bred them. I know they are as lively, and as [...]

The Element of the Unexpected in Beethoven

By |2019-03-20T16:42:05-05:00July 18th, 2018|

The element of the unexpected is so often associated with Beethoven. But surprise is not enough; what makes it so great is that no matter how shocking and unexpected the surprise is, it always somehow gives the impression—as soon as it has happened—that it is the only thing that could have happened at that moment. [...]

“Not yet two o’clock on that July afternoon in 1863”

By |2018-07-03T22:06:49-05:00July 3rd, 2018|

“It's all now you see. Yesterday won't be over until tomorrow and tomorrow began ten thousand years ago. For every Southern boy fourteen years old, not once but whenever he wants it, there is the instant when it's still not yet two o'clock on that July afternoon in 1863, the brigades are in position behind [...]

My Guiding Philosophy

By |2018-05-08T12:29:13-05:00May 8th, 2018|

"My guiding philosophy was that playing every day for your team was the most honorable thing you could do. They were counting on you. You had a challenge that day, and you came to the ballpark to meet that challenge. You played. That was the highest level you could achieve." —quoted in The Streak: Lou [...]

Competition vs. Illumination in Learning

By |2018-11-21T08:38:42-05:00January 17th, 2018|

"That brings me to the protection of the exchanges that are the life of learning from dangers both within and without the classroom. Of these there are many, of which I’ll mention only one: the corruption of conversation into debate, into argument, and even into discussion, into all the modes of human communication in which [...]

Heaven Is a Playground

By |2017-09-22T15:45:41-05:00September 20th, 2017|

"It is not only possible to say a great deal in praise of play; it is really possible to say the highest things in praise of it. It might reasonably be maintained that the true object of all human life is play. Earth is a task garden; heaven is a playground. To be at last [...]

Learning How to See Again

By |2017-08-16T15:20:26-05:00August 16th, 2017|

Man's ability to see is in decline. Those who nowadays concern themselves with culture and education will experience this fact again and again. We do not mean here, of course, the physiological sensitivity of the human eye. We mean the spiritual capacity to perceive the visible reality as it truly is.... The capacity to perceive [...]

“Baseball Is Our Game”

By |2017-06-28T12:07:08-05:00June 28th, 2017|

"I like your interest in sports ball, chiefest of all base-ball particularly: base-ball is our game: the American game: I connect it with our national character. Sports take people out of doors, get them filled with oxygen generate some of the brutal customs (so-called brutal customs) which, after all, tend to habituate people to a [...]

The State Will Take Care of Itself

By |2017-06-21T15:28:24-05:00June 21st, 2017|

"If others play the fool, it is no reason why you should. The State will take care of itself. Mind your own business as you have heretofore done, and every thing will be better for yourself and for the State. There are men whose vocation it is, from taste, habit, and education, to be statesmen, [...]