For Pittsburghers, it is the best of times and the worst of times. The Steelers' uncommon successes should more than make up for the Pirates' uncommon (horrific ?) failures. Maybe that contradiction in outcomes could sustain us until ...oh, the middle of June, when speculation begins in earnest on another Steelers winning season to offset the Pirates' firm hold on last place. To those who tell me that the truth always lies at the midpoint between the two extremes, I say, "The hell it does.!" The Steelers played 19 games last season to claim the Super Bowl; the Pirates, 162 to claim the cellar. Where is the emotional equity in those numbers?
But to give baseball its due, it should be recalled that the game was once known as "Our National Pastime" before it was replaced with Twittering. I know nothing about Twittering - until yesterday I didn't even know how to use it in a simple declarative sentence - but I do know that a runner cannot go from first base to third without touching second and that the infield fly rule has nothing to do with insects. For those insights, and the little figurine of Roberto Clemente that stands on the shelf above my desk, I will honor the opening of a new season with the not quite exhausted patience of Job while forlornly conceding once again, "No, we can't!".