The teacher, the boy, and his Red Sox
“Teacher, there are so many things I do not understand. It all seems so wide, so big, so…..lost,” said the listless student as rain pummeled the Thai countryside. Lotus blossoms, rice paddies and roads alike sank beneath the heavy rains of the late monsoon season, providing a fitting backdrop for another Zen lesson.
“Oh, my child. What things trouble you today? Let us explore and discuss, and together we may find some truths.”
“I am worried about humanity, teacher. I worry about peace, and war, and of course about Miley Cyrus. But mostly, today, I am worried about the internet.”
“Tell me, grasshopper. Tell me your concerns.”
“I feel a deep pain in my stomach, as though my spine is coming through my chest. Every time I try to log onto ESPN.com to watch the Red Sox-Rays game, the internet falters and fails. It is of great concern to me.
“The Red Sox were leading, 6-4, in the bottom of the seventh, but the internet crashed just as the Sox were coming to bat. What will come of them, and of Red Sox nation?”
The teacher smiled, adjusted his saffron robes and took the student by the hand.
“There are many mysteries in this universe, Grasshopper, many wonders that even I cannot contemplate nor understand.
“How the rice survives the floods. How a gasoline-powered engine works. How John Boehner came to be the third most powerful man in the United States.
“But many mysteries also have their own stories to tell. The opposite of a problem is a solution, of a challenge, a success. For example, you love your family as much as you loathe the Yankees, is this not so?”
“Yes, master. What you say is true. My love for my mother, father and sisters and brothers is as strong as my hatred for pinstripes.”
“Ah, but hatred is not a productive emotion, is it Grasshopper? Is it better to be happy that the Yankees are playing golf right now, even as the Red Sox season continues, than to wish for Alex Rodriguez to continue his career in New York so you can watch him strike out with the bases loaded in the top of the ninth in a one-run game at Fenway next September? You see? Your soul, your happiness, your sense of being profits and expands when you make the positive the essence of your thinking.”
“I think I understand, master. I must trust, and be positive.
“I see now. The internet is merely a tool, a conveyance of that which is inevitable.
“The Red Sox destiny is determined not by me, or by the internet, or even by John Henry, but by forces even you perhaps cannot understand.
“I must listen to the rain drops falling on the thatched roof, and watch the buffalo chew its cud, grateful for the cool rain that keeps it cool and the ticks away from its hide. Even though the rain is the cause of the terrible internet signal, it is also the cause of happiness.
“The Red Sox score will be the Red Sox score and the outcome is beyond my control. I can trust in the gods of Yawkey Way, and in the spirit of goodness which brings success to Red Sox nation. It is to be in 2013.”
The master smiled warmly and rose to leave.
“You have learned well, Grasshopper, and I can see that today’s lesson has taught you much.”
“But where are you going, master? We have much more to discuss, and I have many unanswered questions.”
“I am going to your brother’s house, Grasshopper. He has satellite TV and bought the MLB Playoff Pack. If I hurry, I can catch the eighth inning.”