Saturday, September 18, 2010
Fall is coming or already upon us. One is not sure coming from Asia. It’s the leaves in the trees that give some clue. When the leaves turn yellow in the trees it means that fall is here. The seasons determine what sports are played. Football and basket ball usually start in the fall though the foot ball season should end before winter. Basketball, being an indoor sport, can extend all the way into winter. Hockey is also a winter sport. Where people come into the warm indoor stadiums and watch their sport heroes. America has a sports culture where kids are trained early in life. One gets to know the moves and slang terms like block and tackle and touch play. When one is old, he can speak about playing interference or tackling when undertaking office politics.
Tennis, soccer and baseball are all spring or summer sports when the weather is pleasant and one can stroll into the fields. Play can also extend into fall where one can catch a game outdoors in the beautiful foliage. Fall is the most beautiful season to be outdoors when the trees are in bloom with different shades. The weather is a bit cooler that one would need a sweater. Spring and summer is also a nice time but a bit hot in the South East. The sky is a wonderful blue during this period with the sun way out warming the day. Golf is an all weather sport where one can be out any time including winter as some aficionados or idiots often do. The seasons dictate the sports as well as the other activities that one does at home.
In small towns there are a lot of wonderful fairs in the fall or late in the summer. It is a preparation for winter when most folks would stay home. So it is a celebration before the cold and falling snow. There are a lot of wonderful parades where people would walk down Main Street, often war veterans where the crowd would clap their hands especially for the old warriors who fought in the European wars or the ones in Asia. Only the recent Middle East wars does one see some hesitation from the crowds. But one always hears some decent applause for the proud veterans. War is a continuation of sports, moving from the green fields of youth into the battle fields in far away places; fighting for abstract ideas as Hemingway writes in his books.
War is a natural offspring of sports or maybe sports is a preparation for war where one would talk about strategy or tactics or soldier – sportsmen. Of battalions and divisions and masses of men moving in unison to achieve some far-off goal and eventually the victory cries. The seasons of war are also myriad, where one would have different weapons used in the different seasons. But winter is never a good time to fight. The cold and loneliness and the depressing all white landscape is not the best occasion to be injured or killed. It’s a time best spent in front of a fire place enjoying the wonder of the season. But most battles are won in winter; the Chinese assault in Manchuria against the Japanese or the UN defeat in Korea or even Valley Forge with Washington.
Most officers play golf because it is a pleasant endeavor walking in the green, undulating hills. A golf club and balls is one’s weapon and ammunition and one also talks about strategy and tactics. Perhaps golf can be thought of like chess, where one needs to be physically equipped to implement one’s battle plan – a more active activity than chess. But golf is less cerebral and more in the active lifestyle of sportsmen. A nation of sportsmen is also a nation of warriors where one’s energies are diverted to achieve geo-political goals. The poor youth can further their education with the help of military loans after fighting in the battlefields or the criminals can gain a reprieve from their sentences or the immigrant can get citizenship in a great country. These are the modern sport men who try to gain what ever advantage they can get during the season of their youth so they can be a success during the winter of their lives.