AIPAC

25 Mar

Yeah thanks.

I’m back from AIPAC (African Institute of Planetary Arts Committee) in Washington DC. For those of you who are unfamiliar with this Annual Gathering of the World’s Most Powerful Jewish Wizards and Witches (photographed below), which, I must assume, is most you, I, King of Jewish Baseball, sovereign leader of the largest and only Jewish baseball organization in the world will now explain what it’s like to step into this underworld of Jewish sorcery, in Washington DC, no less, Seat of All Power and Secrets.

The conference, understandably, took place at low-key, undisclosed locations for security purposes. AIPAC rented the Washington Convention Center AND the Verizon Center, home of the Washington Wizards, the Washington Capitols, and Georgetown basketball, for three-days of presentations and speeches, hand shakes and hugs, exchanges of business cards and downward glances at name tags. Nearly 20,000 people attended. Most impressive was the diversity. The crowd ranged from Upper Class American Jews all the way to Upper Middle Class American Jews. How could a group of people with such varied lifestyles, interests, and opinions all exist peacefully in one place, you ask?

At the convention center, in the “AIPAC Village”, we had a photo booth where you could get your very own Israel Baseball card printed, BE PART OF THE TEAM. Now, Ladies and Geetles, without further hubbub and excitement, I present to you, the AIPAC All-Stars, the starting line-up from the 2016 AIPAC policy conference in Washington DC.

Batting lead-ff, from the bronx, Jerome Fish.

Leading-off, from the Bronx, Jerome Fish.

Batting 2, playing right field, Yisoel Neuby.

Batting 2nd, playing right field, Yisoel Neuby.

Batting 3rd, and playing pitcher's helper, Harvey Young.

Batting 3rd, playing pitcher’s helper, Harvey Young.

Batting Clean-Up, Dr. Babe Ruth.

Batting Clean-Up, Dr. Babe Ruth.

Hitting 5th, the Speedy, Ken Horowizt.

Hitting 5th, “Speedy”, Ken Horowitz.

The 6th hitter, playing short stop, and second base, Ilene Barr.

The 6th hitter, playing short stop, and 2nd base, Edie Barr.

Batting 7, Steamin' Willie Hochman.

7th hitter, Steamin’ Willie Hochman.

Batting 8th, in long relief, Hillel "the Scribe" Cuttler.

Batting 8th, Hillel “the Scribe” Kuttler.

Batting last, "Happy" Gilbert Achor.

Batting last, “Happy” Gilbert Achor.

And, as always, pitching today for Team Israel, Shlomo Lipetz aka Shlo J Simpson, the man with an iron right arm, and a stronger will, looking into his eyes like look into the deep abyss of an almost empty well in New England in 1894, or any other year, and seeing a baby lamb at the bottom, the Pirate, Shlo La Rock.

And, as always, pitching today for Team Israel, Shlomo Lipetz aka Shlo J Simpson, the man with an iron right arm, and a stronger will. Looking into his eyes is like looking into the deep abyss of an empty well in New England in 1894, or any other year, and seeing at the bottom a baby lamb singing in the voice of Billy Holiday.

At the stadium, a video about Baseball Le’Kulam, our co-existence program, screened Monday evening between speeches by republican candidates Ted Cruz and none other than the man himself, Halloween Head, front runner for the Republican presidential nomination, Donald Trump, as his friends in Mexico kindly refer to him. People gasped as Trump took the stage. A boy behind me held his hand over his forehead and chirped in excitement after examining a picture of Trump he had snapped.  Trump waltzed to the stage and deliver his finest stand-up comedy routine. He was a high-school football coach at a pep rally. The crowd, some of who had threatened to leave before Trump’s speech in protest, instead responded with thunderous applause like family members and fans ready for the big game Friday night. By the end, most of the stadium was on their feet as spotlights panned over the audience revealing wide eyes, bright smiles, and nods of approval.

Vince McMan

Vince McMahon

I was mostly concerned with our presentation. Fadi and Niv, two boys from Baseball Le’Kulam, were waiting backstage to deliver their lines next to seasoned politicians. We had rehearsed the day before, but there weren’t many upon many thousands of people there. After a little confusion about where to stand, they took their rightful place at the podium. Check it out.

Boom. AIPAC 2016. Happened. In the books. Donezo. We came, we saw, we considered the options. And we raised our participation trophy high above our heads in victory!

 

 

ISRAEL BASEBALL EXPERIENCE

19 Oct

Want to be 8 feet tall? Want to climb the volcanoes of Mars and look out triumphantly over red skies as clouds of mercury and gasoline swirl above you like schools of dancing fairies?  Want to conquer your fear of small rodents? What’s that you say, young man – you want to come to Israel to play baseball?  Well, your time has come.

After my final college baseball game I stood on the warning track in right field and thought I would never wear a baseball uniform again. That was 13 years ago, and I am still wearing a uniform, literally, right now, sitting in metal spikes typing with my wrists taped and eye black smeared all over my face. It is a scary moment for athletes, when your career ends. But here’s the thing, it doesn’t have to end. Keep playing. Start coaching. Since my last college game I have played and coached all over the world, and became, as you know, dear reader, Ladies and Geetles, the King of All Jewish Baseball.

If you want to try finance, or advertising, do it, by all means. Sit at that desk, in that meeting, low ceilings, carpeted walls, bad lighting, 90 degree angles, THE HORROR. You will make more money than me, I assure you. But if you want to travel, play ball, work with kids, work outside, hit one more home run, throw one more perfect curve ball, and meet the King of Jewish Baseball, then sign up for this program…

http://athletics.masaisrael.org/

Check check it…

http://www.timesofisrael.com/spotlight/jews-and-baseball-2/

 

 

THE BROOKLYN WAY

18 Sep

As Rabbi Biggie Smalls used to say, “Spread love is the Brooklyn way.”

Teams and venues for the 2017 World Baseball Classic have been announced. Team Israel will compete in the qualifying round against Great Britain, Brazil, and Pakistan IN BROOKLYN. Winner advances to the 2017 WBC.

And so we come back to the beginning, the circle, the 37-second life of the silk worm, to what started all of this King of Jewish Baseballing in the first place, THE GREAT COMPETITION OF BASEBALL AND WORTHINESS, the World Baseball Classic. In Brooklyn, no less, my home– former home.  I lived in Brooklyn and went to Israel. Now I live in Israel and will go to Brooklyn.

We have exactly one year until the tournament. Another robotic rabbit to chase. Something to keep training for. We’re gonna catch it this time, rip its animatronic heart out, sink our teeth into its synthetic pelt, and devour its rubber core. Not pretty. Not pretty at all.

We just heard yesterday, with the rest of the world, when WBCInc. made the announcement. Long road ahead. Search #teamisrael2016 on all social media for updates on the squad. And, of course, keep your forehead tube securely suctioned to King of Jewish Baseball for the outsider’s inside angle, or the insider’s outside angle, or the… wait… what?

http://m.mlb.com/news/article/150118388/2017-world-baseball-classic-qualifiers-are-set

Pools and Venues for 2016 WBCQ.

Format for 2016 WBCQ.

 

AMSTERDAM

15 Aug

Once a year, coaches and scouts from around Europe swarm like locust and gather at Major League Baseball’s Elite Camp for the top young prospects on the continent. This year, camp was in Hoofddorp, Holland, at the new Hoofddorp Pioneers complex. Dutifully, I, King of All Jewish Baseball, made an appearance.  That’s right, Ladies and Geetles, it’s true, I went to Amsterdam for camp, and to allow the Dutch people to see me in person, from my balcony, of course.

I fly home to Israel tonight and do not have much time to write, so I will let the magical new artform known as photography tell the story for me. So sit back, relax, and be transported through the lens of my iphone into to a slightly over-crowded fantasy land called Amsterdam, where the streets are liquid, the fairies fly, and the bicycles never stop.

Good morning, Dudes.

Good morning, Dudes. Time to stretch.

Steve Finley going over the finer points of base running and post WWII European economics with the guys.

Coach Finley going over the finer points of base running and post WWII European economics.

It's Dave Bush! Used to play aginst him in college when he was at Wake Forrest. Sad story. I went on to become the King of Jewish Baseball and just dissapeared into oblivion, only pitched 10 years in the Major Leagues for the Blue Jays and Brewers. Pathetic.

It’s Dave Bush! Used to play aginst him in college when he was at Wake Forrest. Sad story. I went on to become the King of Jewish Baseball and he just dissapeared into oblivion,  pitching 10 years in the Major Leagues for the Blue Jays and Brewers. Pathetic!

My Cincinnati brother, and the 2nd best short stop at camp, Barry Larkin (and Fin) talks to the guys before lunch. Practice in the mornings. Games in the afternoons. Meetings at night.

My Cincinnati brother (and the 2nd best short stop at camp) Barry Larkin, and the King of Irish Baseball, Steve Finley, talk to the guys before lunch. Practice in the morning. Games in the afternoon. Meetings at night.

This is the life for me.

This is the life for me.

Get me the hell out of that BASEBALL PRISON. I need culture. Take me to Amsterdam.

Get me the hell out of that baseball prison. I require culture, and house boats. Take me to Amsterdam.

What a dump.

What a dump.

Don't jump little dude! OK. Now you can jump.

Don’t jump little dude! OK. Now you can jump.

Take me to the people. Show me how they live.

Take me to the people. Show me how they live.

Amsterdam, Amsterdam. Man o Man. Amsterdam, Amsterdam. I'm lost in Amsterdam.

Amsterdam, Amsterdam. Man o Man. Amsterdam, Amsterdam. I’m lost in Amsterdam.

 

THE B POOL

3 Aug

We came up short, again. It’s the cycle. Try, fail, try again, fail again, try again. Failure is the rule, success is the exception, in baseball, at least. Pain is the rule, health is the exception. It goes like this…

Prepare. Practice. Play.

Focus. Fixate. Fantasize.

Nothing else matters. Put everything on hold. Do it after the tournament. No calls. No emails. Stay with the guys, the team, the group. Eyes on the prize. No distractions. No pain. Ignore the hip. Nothing hurts. Play hard. Put it on the line. Don’t leave the hotel. Don’t waste energy. Rest. There’s another game tomorrow. Good vibes.

We win the first 3. Beat Belarus big. Barely beat Poland. Beat Austria big. We’re rolling. Eitan hits a walk-off slam against Poland. We can’t lose…

Then, we do lose, it goes wrong, against Lithuania, a team we should beat, every time. The nightmare. 7 errors. Day game after a night game. Try to rally. Get it together. Get the energy up. Can’t do it.  These tournaments are not normal. Everyone wants to win. We’re playing for our countries. Every game is game 7. The night before, the Austrian fans were still in the stands going crazy after 3 hours in the rain in the 9th inning with their team losing 10-1, cheering, drinking, singing. It’s intense.

We lose again the next day to Sweden, barely. Dean starts the game. Deano. Best pitcher there. I like our chances. It’s a good game. Back and Forth. We’re winning 5-4 in the top of the 9th. Dean throws 140 pitches. Go to Shlo. Definitely Shlo. Big Shlo. The Magic man. Shlo already has 2 wins in the tournament including a complete game 2 days earlier against Austria. But Sweden scores 5 runs in the 9th, 9-5, them. Shit.

We can still do it. One guy at a time.

We score 3 runs to make it 8-9. Single, single, single, passed ball, single, passed ball, single. They’re nervous. Simon is on 1st, the tying run. I am up, the winning run. 2 outs. I can hit one out to win it, hit one in the gap to score Simon from 1st, or at least get on base and keep the rally alive. It’s perfect. I am the one, the King of Jewish Baseball, the captain, couldn’t script it better. I want to be up there, and I think the guys want me to be up there too. I feel good, already have 2 hits in the game. Ball 1. Ball 2. Take a strike. Strike 1. 2 and 1, perfect, fastball count, my pitch, see it, hit it. Ground ball to short, shit, in the hole, at least, maybe it will get through. But he makes the play. That’s it. It’s over.

The guys. Damn.

Let go. Let the pain set in. Be tired. See how bad the hip is. It’s bad. Don’t fight it anymore. Get a drink. Stay up all night. Get sick. Fly home. Go back to work. Life. Reality. Tell everyone you lost, 3rd place out of 6. They tell you it’s OK with a hint of pity.  It is not. Think about the games. Write a blog post. The 2-1 fastball. How did that happen? How did I not hit it out of the park, or in a gap somewhere, at least? Was Sweden the better team?

If we played badly, it would be easier to understand. But we didn’t. We were good. We averaged 8 runs a game. Our pitchers did a good job. The top 5 hitters in our line-up all hit over .400 with on base percentages over .600. Our 3, 4 hitters had 20 RBIs in 5 games. Our pitchers had the lowest ERA in the tournament. Austria and Sweden were good, but we were just as good, maybe better.

Usually writing about it makes it feel better. Not this time. The hip hurts. Maybe we just need time. Next European Championship is in 2 years. I’ll be 37. Damn. The cycle. The disappointment. The hope. We did good. People know us now. They know we’re good. We were close. We can do it. The young guys can do it. It’ll be their turn next time.

DSC_3796

Brothers. The 2015 Israel National Team. I love you guys.

ROAD TO VIENNA

25 Jul

What do Bill Withers, James Brown, Curtis Mayfield, Gil Scott Heron, Otis Redding, Sam Cooke, Isaac Hayes, Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway, and Marvin Gaye all have in common?  Quite a lot, actually.

The Israel National Team, aka the Greatest Jewish Baseball Show on Earth, is coming to a town near you, if you live in Austria, that is.  Meet the team…

http://www.baseball.org.il/en/cat-heb-2/307-senior-national-team-on-their-way-to-vienna

That’s right, Ladies and Geetles, the planets are aligned, the birds and dogs have taken refuge high on the mountain top in anticipation, it’s finally time for the inter-dimensional natural phenomenon known as the European Championships of Baseball.  We leave tonight, traveling by a raft of Diet Coke bottles, lead only by the light of the North Star and our own wits, and a GPS, of course, the hope of victory gleaming in our eyes like the flickering ambers of an ancient fire rising to heaven.

Monday – Belarus

Tuesday – Poland

Wednesday – Austria

Thursday – Lithuania

Friday – Sweden

Saturday, top two teams play for the ‘chip.  Winner moves up to the A-Pool.

Follow all the games here… http://www.baseballem2015.at/tournament/schedule/. And search #roadtovienna on all social media.

Let’s go to Vienna. The revolution will be live.

 

GREECE

9 Jul

Greece is melting, so we thought it would be a good time to go there.  That’s right, Ladies and Geetles, just last week, the same week, in fact, that the country defaulted on its loans t0 the European Union, the Israel Under 21 National Team won the Acropolis Cup in Athens with a perfect record of 6 and 0.  Only 3 teams attended.  Team Israel, Team Australia (made up completely of players from Germany), and the Alimos Lions, the local club team and our hosts. We duked it out for SUPREME INTERGALACTIC CONTROL of the Under-21 Baseball Universe as economies collapsed like sundowns in the background, and in the end, Team Israel stood alone.

2015 Israel U21 National Team. Acropolis Cup champs.

2015 Israel U21 National Team. Acropolis Cup champs.

Originally, there were supposed to be 8 teams, 2 divisions, sponsors, groupies, mascot races, an event worthy of its own name.  Then, 6 weeks before the tournament, the Greek Baseball Federation dissolved and combined with the gymnastics federation.  That is not a joke.  And only 3 of us were crazy enough to continue on, head first, into the economic and baseball wasteland known as Greece.  There were 2 ways to look at the tournament, and maybe at the country, as an amazing failure because it was not as big or as good as we hoped, or as an amazing success because the fact that it even existed was a small miracle.

The games were played at one of the old practice fields from the 2004 Athens Olympics that has not been touched in 11 years, a modern ruin, a recent relic, frozen in time like the Acropolis itself, without the crowd, grass growing over the dugouts and around turtle screens left on the field.  There was no running water or electricity at the stadium.  There were buckets of water in the clubhouse to rinse the toilets with and Spyros, who you will meet shortly, bought a generator and a wireless microphone so we could have walk-up songs and to announce the starting line-ups before slipping down his mask to umpire the games.

A practice field from the 2004 Olympics.

A practice field from the 2004 Olympics.

International baseball is carried on the shoulders of individuals who, for whatever reason, make superhuman efforts to play the game, in Greece, in Moldova, in Israel. With no baseball federation and no support, one man made the tournament happen, our friend Spyros, the announcer and ump, founder and head coach of the Alimos Lions, tournament organizer and janitor who spent his precious euros on bus rides and water bottles for us, despite everything, held a barbeque for the teams at the stadium, traditional Greek food called Souvlaki, traditional Greek dance also called Souvlaki, if I remember correctly, shooting fireworks off in center field, lighting the dark Greek sky for a moment.

Spyros.

Spyros.

But the crisis in Greece hasn’t hit anyone, not the banks, not even Spyros, as hard as it’s hit the non-human community.  That’s right, Ladies and Geetles, I, King of Jewish Baseball, sadly report, there seem to be abandoned, depressed, bear-sized dogs all over Athens, and by “seem to be”, I mean that there are definitely without a doubt gigantic dogs laying around the streets of the capitol, panting, people stepping over them, hardly noticing they’re there.  So, as is my habit, using the new technology known as a camera, I sprung into action and started photographing these pets turned punks. Apparently, in Greece, when faced with tough times, kick your dog out of the house, first thing, then, once that ungrateful beast is gone, try to figure out how to find gainful employment and rebuild the country.  Meet them, the Bear Dogs of Athens.

Hey Buddies. What you doin' out here?

Hey Buddies. What you doin’ out here?

 

Hey. What's going on? Why are there so many dogs around here?

Hey. What’s going on? Why are there so many dogs around here?

 

No really, what's going on? Why are there so many dogs.

No really, what’s going on? Why are there so many dogs.

 

Not cool.

OK. This is not cool. What the hell is going on?

 

Is anyone else seeing this?

Is anyone else seeing this?

 

Don't worry about me, Guys. I'm fine.

Don’t worry about me, Guys. I’m fine.

 

Help me!

Help me!

 

I blame this dog for everything.

I blame this dog for everything.

 

The last dog in Greece with the courage to stand on his own four paws.

The last dog in Greece with the courage to stand on his own four paws. The Spyros of the dog world.

 

A happy dog. Thank god.

A happy dog. Thank god.


And now, after a strange week in Greece, we’re back in Israel, working summer camp every day, and preparing for the B-Pool European Championships, July 27-August 3 in Vienna, Austria. That’s right, Israel Baseball fans, it’s almost time for the Greatest Jewish Baseball Show on Earth, the Israel Senior National Team, to pack our bags and hit the roads of Europe, again, this time for our biggest, baddest tournament yet, winner moves up to the A-Pool next year.  So get your blue and white face paint and your games face on and check #roadtovienna on all social media to follow the team on our journey.

EXIT SANDMAN

27 Jun

Allow me, King of Jewish Baseball, to dutifully tell the tale of last week and an Ancient and Holy Tradition, the 2nd Annual Israel Baseball Summer Classic, the under 21 National Team versus the Senior National Team, 5 games in 5 days, a very short marathon, the Puppies vs. the Old Dogs, blood sport, war, Great and Sad Theater of Humanity, acted out on the nearly flat surface of a parallel dimension, the baseball field at Baptist Village, Israel.

israelbaseballsummerclassic2015

Old Dogs win the first two games of the series.  Enter Sandman.  Mariano Rivera is in Israel!  We get this picture of him holding his stylish new Israel Baseball sweatshirt and ask him if he wants to throw out the first pitch at the final game of the Classic.

New closer for the Israel National Team.

New closer for the Israel National Team.

Of course he does.  He is, after all, the Greatest Closer of All Time and we, the IAB, are The Most Powerful Clandestine Jewish Baseball Organization in the World.  It only makes sense.  He would love to throw out the first pitch and meet the kids who play baseball in Israel.

Mariano is coming. Tell Everyone. Bring him in through gate in left field. Play Enter Sandman when he walks in.  Rent a sound system, hire a photographer, security, invite the press.

Meanwhile, the series rages on.  The Youngs battle back, using their switchblades, mainly, and easily win the next two games, tying the series, and setting the scene for a 5th and final showdown, a rubber match for all the shekels, and, as assumed, eternal life.  In the backgound, Mariano.  Will he come?  Or won’t he?

No phone calls, no meetings, no confirmation, looking like no Mo.  These guys are hard to nail down.  I once sat up memorizing Doc Gooden’s career statistics, 1984 Rookie of the Year, 1985 Cy Young Award winner, 1986 World Champion with the New York Mets, 1996 no hitter with the New York Yankees, 2000 World Champion also with the New York Yankees – only to have him no show the next day.  It’s not easy accepting the love of so many adoring fans, I know, Dr. K, Mo, the King of Jewish Baseball, it gets tiresome.  Exit Sandman.  Cancel.  Tell everyone, contact the press, he isn’t coming.

But people will do what they want to do, or, at least, in this case, will still do what they had planned on doing, so they came anyways, some of them, at least, from Jerusalem, from Raanana, from Modiin.  They came for the food, but stayed for the music, as they say, came for Mariano, but stayed for us, the Greatest Jewish Baseball Show on Earth, give them what they want, the rabid, viscous fans, a close game, stand-up doubles, an autograph, and chocolate, by god, give them chocolate.

Game 5 was tied in the bottom of the 9th inning, 5 to 5, coincidentally, or not, when the black sky opened and owls with the bodies of rabbits filled the horizon, Snake Birds and Horse Men vomited Earth and Sea, and the Old Dogs scored a fatal and final death blow, a 6th run, ending the game and tournament, both teams exhausted.  It was a good game, in a weird way, thanks to Mariano Rivera.  We will tell people he is coming to every game from now on.


Tomorrow, we have the IAB Annual General Meeting, a thrilling event, no doubt, like the White House Corresponence Dinner, just like it.  We will gather around a fire and and join hands and ask the Great Mother for visions of the past and future and drink bottled water as our ancestors did.  And then, after the meeting, it’s off to Greece, that’s right, Ladies and Geetles, put on your gold chains, your leather jock strap, and your white batting glove, because the Under-21 National Team is coming to Greece!  We are playing in the Baseball World Cup in Athens.  Anything could happen.  We could win, the economy could collapse, again.  I will magically switch from Fish to Coach Fish, from short stop to the 3rd base coaches box, and we will, we know this much, at least, as always, play baseball.

Check #roadtoathens on social media to keep up with our quest for glory and ultimate victory.

 

BASEBALL FOR ALL

22 May

It is I, King of All Jewish Baseball, once again, with the financial opportunity of a lifetime. Finally, your chance to do something good, GIVE US YOUR MONEY, to make right all the wrong, to be born anew, fresh and clean. All it takes is a small donation, an offering, if you will, something symbolic, a seared lamb shank, some sage, a few thousand here, a million there, a sacrificial Visa or Master Card number offered at the sacred alter of crowd funding, where self-anointed modern-day saints kneel before friends and family and accept the wealth they assuredly deserve.  How can I do this, you ask? Allow me to explain.

Many months ago, my man Tom, aka Dizzy, Gillespie, King of All International Scouting for the Pittsburgh Pirates, and Executive Director of Play Global (http://www.play-global.org/), called me and said he had an idea, “Let’s set up a series of fraudulent crowd funding campaigns,” he said, “then disappear forever into Mexico City.” Kidding, kidding.  He said, “Fish, I have an idea, let’s start a program in Israel for Jewish and Arab kids to play baseball together.  I am, after all, the King of All International Scouting for the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Executive Director of Play Global, and you are the King of All Jewish Baseball and the Executive Director of the Israel Association of Baseball.  Together, we could surely accomplish this.”  To which I said, without thought, “That is a horrible idea, Tom.  But let’s do it anyways.”  And thus was born BASEBALL LE’KULAM, or, for those of you not fluent in transliteration, BASEBALL FOR ALL.

After much preparation and convincing of parents to loan us their children, on March 5th and 6th of the Great and Nearly Perfect year of 2015, 30 sixth graders, boys and girls, 15 Jewish kids, and 15 Arab kids, who would have never met despite living so close, the Jewish kids from Modiin, the Arab kids from Ramle, just a few miles apart, came together for Baseball Le’Kulam.  None of them had ever played baseball before. But we played together.  Some of them had never shared a dinner table with a member of the other group.  But we ate together.  And a few had never spent a night away from home.  But we slept together– wait, that didn’t sound right.  We slept over, in the same building, that is, the coaches staying up all night chasing the kids back into their rooms when they tried to escape to bond over junk food and air guitar bands.  

And like that, magically, Baseball Le’Kulam went from a nice idea, a theory, to a real thing. The kids turned from names on a piece of paper into real human beings with real faces and real lives and real families.  Just two weeks ago, all the kids and their parents and siblings were eating pizza and playing catch for Baseball Le’Kulam Family Nightas the sun set at Kibbutz Gezer.  We have 2 more sessions, June 4th and 5th, and October 15th and 16th.  But all this real pizza and real coaches for these real people costs real money.  Which is where you come in. 

Watch the video.  Read the campaign page. And donate.  If you can.  We need it to continue the program.  We will not go to Mexico City and put it all on black. Promise. 

CLICK HERE!!!!! https://www.crowdrise.com/baseballinisrael-playglobal/fundraiser/playglobal!!!!!!!

YOGA

28 Feb

I have bad news.  After years of fighting for good, opposing all that is unjust, I have finally turned to the dark side, I have given up, I have been broken, literally, physically, and I have succumb to the evil spirits of the underworld, that’s right, Ladies and Geetles, I, King of All Jewish Baseball, began experimenting with the black magic commonly known as YOGA, or stretching and breathing, as I, in the name of accuracy, like to call it. I have officially outsourced my health and control of my own body to a beautiful twenty-four year old Israeli Yogi/Witchdoctor/Shaman named Roni.  Roni and I meet once a week on her rooftop studio under the crushing Middle Eastern sun, the finest honks and Hebrew of Yafo echoing up from the street to our spiritually elevated position above.  

We had our first session yesterday. I thought yoga was supposed to be relaxing.  But today I feel like I caught 18 innings. This could not be right.  The Gods of the Sun and the Moon are punishing me. Yoga is where bad people go to hide, I said, Yoga is not for me. I have my own superior spiritual practice, you know, it is called BASEBALL.  It takes place outdoors, under the sun that giveth life, in the dirt of the earth herself.  We breathe, we focus, we have rituals, we live in the present and block everything else out, in touch with our minds and our bodies.

But, it turns out, playing baseball 10 hours a day 7 days a week for 20 years is not good for you.  Who would have thunk it? So, in a final act of desperation, after trying all the classics– Haitian Voodoo, several elaborate Viking ceremonies involving animal sacrifice, and ancient Rastafarian twerking, as a last resort, I pray to the Eight Armed Serpent Goddess Yoga, Great Native Witch Methusala Shakshuka, to please, I beg of you, bless me with your smoking sage stick, give me health and prosperity.  I will do anything.  I will drink the blood of lambs, as you command.  I will wear a mask over my face as to not inhale and unintentionally harm or kill any holy microorganisms.  I will stop showering, promise.  Anything you say.  Just one or two more seasons under the sun.

Namaste.

Namaste.