Posted 23 May 2012 - 09:27 AM
I assume for most viewers, this gesture of memorial for the daughter he and his wife lost seems appropriate. As a pitcher, Walters will approach the mound from the back and see his daughter’s initials and be reminded of her. However, at Uni-Watch.com, the proprietor and several commenters have found this practice to be inappropriate.
First opinion is from a commenter named “Phil”:
[QUOTE]“You have to feel sorry for anyone who’s lost a child, but that is a “Look at me” move if there ever was one.
Wear a shirt under your jersey, write her initials on your cleat, ****, get a tattoo … but for the love of Christ, keep the mound clear of that.
And this seems like a total ratchet move too. If someone else loses a kid, or their wife, or their mom or their sister, or their childhood friend … what’s to stop them from expressing a similar sentiment? You’re gonna have all kinds of mound graffiti.
Nay, there are other and more appropriate ways to mourn someone than defacing the bump. …
First game back after her death, as a one-off? OK, I’m down with that. Three (at least) games approximately two years after her passing? No.”[/QUOTE]
In response, Paul Lukas, the blog’s owner, writes:
[QUOTE]“I’m with Phil on this one. I’d be more okay with it if the initials were on the side of the mound, where the TV cameras couldn’t pick them up — then it wouldn’t have as much of a “Look at me” factor. As it is, it’s the mound equivalent of some guy who stands behind a TV correspondent and waves because hey, he’s on TV!”[/QUOTE]
Personally, I do not think there is a statute of limitations to how long a person should grieve a loss of a family member – particularly one’s own child. Having the good fortune of not losing anyone close to me, I cannot fully speak towards the topic but I would assume the pain lingers on day six hundred as it does on day two.
Secondly, in response to the “grandstanding” comment, it would appear (although Seth Stohs or a Rochester correspondent would have to confirm) that Walters has performed this act prior to coming to the majors when cameras were around. As I said above, most pitchers climb the mound from the back (or at least circle behind it frequently) and the position of the initials would give Walters the best view.
To summarize my sentiments on the issue, I direct you to Clarence Swamptown’s tweet in reply to the article:
[QUOTE]“Those who critique how a man chooses to mourn the loss of his baby daughter are a special kind of *******.”[/QUOTE]
Amen, brother and shame on Uni-watch.com.
Posted 23 May 2012 - 09:39 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 09:42 AM
Is the mound not the same place where pitchers spit, swear and engage in other such behaviors?
And is it not also common now to have a team's corporate logo right on the mound?
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Posted 23 May 2012 - 10:01 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 10:06 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 10:08 AM
You can come up with statistics to prove anything. Forty percent of all people know that.
Posted 23 May 2012 - 10:13 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 10:18 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 10:30 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:02 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:15 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:24 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:27 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:54 AM
I think the uni-watch guys are guilty mainly jumping the gun a little, with a "but what if everyone did that" point of view that really hasn't been rebutted in any of the discussion I've seen. Yes, it's hard to reproach the specific purpose of grief over a tragedy. But each person out there is going to decide differently what is appropriate - I recall a pitcher (Eddie Bonine with the Tigers?) a couple of years ago catching flak for digging a sign of the cross on the mound. Tomorrow, who knows what worthy event or cause will be symbolized? Maybe some pitcher will think it's important to bring awareness to a balanced budget amendment. BUT... it hasn't happened yet, and the discussion can occur if and when it does happen. So, the uni-watch guys have a certain mindset, and have jumped the gun. They aren't baby haters or anything.
I think you're on the right track in one sense. I don't think anyone would care or much mind if they just put in a rule that no individual was allowed to essentially write their opinions or thoughts on the mound (much like they wouldn't be allowed to wear a Clinton-Gore sticker on their uniform). Because, as you hint at, eventually someone's going to get to something actually controversial. By the nature of the act, people are likely to want to put things there out of the middle...nobody's going to put a big capital 'R' to let the world know their favorite color is red (probably). Where the discussion seems to have veered into the "special kind of *******" is by moving away from that general notion, and making assertions of merit on the motives and methods of a particular person on how he should or should not mourn his daughter. And going beyond that and seeming to accuse him of actually taking some sort of enjoyment in calling it a "look at me" moment is pretty disusting.
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:54 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:55 AM
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:55 AM
That there's a website called "Uni-Watch" with apparently devoted followers is the topic worthyof ridicule, not someone harmlessly remembering their infant daughter. Sheesh.
As long as a player isn't drawing anything vulgar in the dirt who the hell cares? People act like pitching mounds/stadiums are some sacred grounds which never be touched, when in reality US Cell field or whatever it is called is a dump that should be burned to the ground, just like the other Chicago stadium.
Posted 23 May 2012 - 11:56 AM
I personally don't think pitchers should be allowed to 'write' on the mound,
Does it effect the game somehow?
Posted 23 May 2012 - 12:02 PM
Okay, I'm going to sound like the grinch here. When I first noticed the initials last night and found out what they stood for on Twitter, I wasn't particularly bothered by this. But the more I think about it, the more it bothers me.
Perhaps this is generational, but I don't really understand the need to make the letters so large. Or in other cases the need to blog every detail about one's life. Or to post photos of every thing about your child or your spouse or your friends.
In a way it ties into Facebook nation. People are your "friends" whether you've met them or not. Not merely acquaintances but "friends".
My sense of personal privacy just makes me wonder why he feels the need to make HUGE letters on the mound. He could make them much smaller and still honor his daughter and his wife.
Maybe I'm just the grinch reincarnated but I think that someday the generation under the age of 40 is going to wish for some of their privacy back.
Most of what you wrote doesn't seem grinch-ish to me at all. I don't think I'd choose the same thing, and I equally wonder and don't understand at the generational difference in desire to share EVERYTHING with everyone (and I'm not only talking about mourning, here...but mean it more generally and including this particular thing). I also agree that the notion of privacy and personal thought and space has changed. What I wonder, though, is why it "bothers" you. It's different. It's difficult for us to understand maybe. But I also don't understand why you/we/whoever would be bothered by something that is different but doesn't seem to be inherently better or worse. Even if you do make the assumption that your notions of privacy and friendship are "better," I don't see why it's worth being bothered that someone else has chosen to think about it differently.
By the way, and I'm not sure if this is exactly on topic, but there was recently (three weeks ago or so?) an article on grantland.com about the culture of "facebook mourning."