Here’s an unanticipated consequence of retiring: it’s become harder to write the blog.
I thought with more free time, I’d post more entries. But now that I have the entire week to write, I work on other projects. For instance, last week I finished pulling together a 3,500-word article for the URMIA Journal. (URMIA stands for the University Risk Management & Insurance Association, which explains why you wouldn’t be interested in the article. I won’t know for a couple of months whether it’s accepted for publication.) So when Saturday rolls around, I start to think “what am I going to write about for the blog?” and don’t know.
There were several possibilities this week. For instance, The Fabulous Wife decided my retirement meant she could visit her cousins in Ohio, because I could take care of the cats and otherwise hold down the fort. She hadn’t seen her cousins in years, so it was definitely time. And I haven’t lived the bachelor life in years, either. So I thought, sounds like fun, have a great trip and tell everyone I said hi!
But there’s not much newsworthy about that. The cousins are fine. The Fabulous Wife visited the underrated Toledo Museum and went to see a Toledo Mud Hens minor league game. Did you know the Mud Hens’ mascot, Muddy, has a wife named Muddonna? Even less-known fact: today is the Material Bird’s sixteenth birthday.
Yep, that’s some really thought-provoking stuff.
So then I thought, maybe I could write about the arrest of the suspected Golden State Killer, accused of committing 12 murders, at least 45 rapes, and as many as 150 break-ins. But those crimes occurred in the 1970s, before I moved to California, so I have no personal connection. I could write about the method used to identify the suspect — taking advantage of open-source DNA information — but what’s new or interesting about the fact that people are voluntarily posting personal information to the internet and it’s being used for unintended purposes?
Or maybe I could write about how The Fabulous Wife got me a subscription to the on-line New York Times for my birthday and, rather than read the lead articles or plumb the archives, I mainly do the crossword puzzle. I didn’t know the Monday puzzle is ridiculously easy and the crosswords get more difficult as the week goes on. I’ve got a completion rate of 80%, but my consecutive completion streak is only seven because I’ve been able to finish only one Saturday puzzle.
Yeah, that’s a goldmine!
Finally, I thought maybe I should do another baseball post, building on the last one about how pitching responsibilities have been distributed more broadly over time. Shohei Ohtani, the pheenom who instantly eclipsed Mike Trout (merely the Mickey Mantle of our day) as the most famous player on the Los Angeles Angels, may be the harbinger of things to come: a position player who can also give you quality innings pitched. There’s no alternative if you need more pitchers but the roster size remains capped at 25.
I could point to yesterday’s decision by the Giants to let Pablo Sandoval pitch the ninth inning of a blowout loss to the Dodgers as proof the idea is gaining traction. Not only was it the first time the Giants let a position player pitch since little-remembered Greg Litton did it on July 4, 1991, but Panda threw the only 1–2–3 inning of the game for the Giants.
None of these possibilities were worthy of a full-blown post. So instead I hit on doing them as quick takes with very little depth. Perhaps this is the future of the blog. But I’ve only been retired three weeks, so who knows? I hope you stay tuned to find out.