Jesse Jarnow

richard ford’s “a minors affair”

A fine meditation on the slowness of the dog days, originally published in Harper’s, via Baseball: A Literary Anthology:

Everywhere, from Portland to Pawtucket, baseball’s the same slow, sometimes stately, sometimes tedious game governed by extensive, complexly arbitrary rules, and practiced according to arcane, informal mores and runic vocabularies which compel that almost every act of play be routine. Even the great smashes, the balletic defensive turns, and the unparalleled pitching performances — by being so formally anticipated, so contemplated and longed-for by the fans — become ritual, even foregone. It’s a Platonic game in this way, with all visible excellence (and even unexcellence) ratified by a prior scheme of invisible excellence which is the game itself.

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