Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Thank You Victory and Cable Companies for Giving Me My Life Back

Dear Victory Sports One and Charter Cable,

I'm writing to express my sincerest thanks for having been relieved of my worst addiction: Twins baseball. For the last 11 years I have spent my summer nights in front of a television, watching the games with my mood hinging on every pitch. I thought I was happy, but I had no idea. I would struggle through the winter months waiting for opening day and dread the November boredom. Then you guys came along and took it all away. Finally, now I'm free.

Did you know there are actually things to do at night during the summer? Only recently have I realized that by doing my homework in the month of April I get better grades come May. Some people even go out to movies and visit with friends around a friendly table of cards. I'm still learning, but cribbage is quite riveting, and I've only lost $200 so far playing poker. Every now and then, someone will mention the Twins and for a second my affliction returns. However, soon I'm able to put the quickly fading memories away and get back to what I am told is “real life”.

Never before have I had a better relationship with my family. It's been months since I've made them angry by shushing them right in the middle of a big pitch. We no longer have conversations where I'm half-listening and mostly just watching the game. I used to be really confused when they would come home and bitterly inform me that I had missed another wedding: this time my own! Turns out all the conversations had taken place during the game! What did they expect? Now, I actually respond to their questions. Today, I found out that my sister is actually 17 and not 12 as I had previously thought! I guess when you put back all those summer months they add up in a hurry. There is even a little time left over in my nights to do some chores for my dear mother, who has mysteriously gained a new bounce in her step of late.

My acne has cleared up with the decline in my stress level. Because I cannot watch the games, it is very difficult to feel connected to the team. Without this connection it’s not quite as terrible when Radke gives up 6 runs in 2 innings or Rivas grounds into yet another double play. The box score is just not as brutal as seeing it happen live. I tried getting my fix from the radio back when I was still addicted. Wouldn't you know it, Radke gave up the 6 runs and all they said was "Oh, by the way this just happened while we were talking about Dazzle's playing days or some guy Gordo sat next to on the plane." With the drama and the climax gone my blood pressure has decreased and I'm sleeping again.

Because of you I feel like a normal person. I can sit quietly in my room and not wake anyone by cheering on a game winning double. When I talk to people I do not over-whelm them with fast facts about players that really no one should know. For once, even I can communicate with the casual fan and have him understand me. It’s quite liberating to say the least. I wake up in the morning and I don't have to correct the newspaper game recaps. There is no more hurrying as home as fast as I can to catch the first pitch. Did you know that there are actually roses to stop and smell? Strange.

Most of all though, thank you for taking away Dick and Bert. Dick has steadily improved throughout the years but for someone who watches a lot of baseball, it’s amazing how little he understands. I can't tell you how frustrated I would get listening to him talk about how Guzman was “right up there with Garciaparrra and Tejada for best major league shortstops”, shortly after he had grounded into a base loaded double play. Bert on the other hand was getting me in trouble at school. Someone would claim that he didn't belong in the Hall. Since I spent so many hours on that couch listening to his commentary, I had grown attached and thus an obligation to defend him. Next thing you know (and 287 wins later), I've got a bloody nose and the other guy can't see straight. Since he and I have become estranged my medical bills have drastically declined.

Now I'm asking you to please take your time getting any deals done. Baseball may be in my blood but I'm really enjoying seeing my friends again. The time I have spent with my family is creating lasting memories and girls are actually noticing me now that the nervous ticks have gone away. Because of you guys I can actually say five sentences without mentioning the Twins, which has greatly improved my performance at job interviews. I must admit I miss Dick and Bert, but I think I was growing a little too attached; I was even starting to dress like Dick, tie and all. Thank you for freeing me of the countless hours that I would otherwise have spent following the team that I love so much. I was also pleasantly surprised to discover you also took the time to ensure that I would not be tempted by the Channel 45 game of the week since we don’t get it here in Mankato. That's right, I'm an addict so I can't have any Twins but I can watch the White Sox- the fastest way to a cure such an addiction I’m told. I have seen the light and now I must go towards it.

John Betzler
Recovering Twins Addict

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