This job I’ve had for almost 20 years is a terrific job.
I work with sharp and dedicated people, and I get to characterize as work things like watching Slap Shot again. I read lots of good books, talk with all sorts of different people from whom I learn all manner of intriguing things—everything from why people cling to losing teams to how the owners of teams—whether they are winning or losing—manage to convince the public and the people representing the public to build sports palaces those people can’t afford…and that’s just part of what we’ve been doing this week.
And as we were wrapping up the doing of those things on Friday, the radio news organization of which Only A Game is a part was suddenly galvanized by the necessity of reporting one of most horrific stories any of us have ever encountered. The school in Connecticut, where those elementary school children and several adults were shot to death on Friday, is in a neighboring state.
Only A Game is meant to inform and entertain you, not necessarily in that order. But there are days, and Friday was one of them, when fulfilling that responsibility—which is almost always a delightful responsibility—feels especially frivolous.
We are a sports program, and sports is about games, and there are people who feel anybody involved in this endeavor should confine himself to scores, analysis, predictions and human interest stories about the athletes, professional and amateur, who provide us with material.
But today, I can’t quite do it. So I’m closing the show with an expression of our sympathy for the families in Connecticut who lost children on Friday. May you somehow find, in time, strength and serenity. And may we all find our way to the establishment of a culture wherein we make it much less likely that what happened on Friday in Connecticut will ever tear apart another family.