Date: Fri Aug 21, 1998 8:57:58 PM America/New_York
Spacecan't possibly think of anything you could bring, but C Level enthusiasm. I have pretty much have everything I need in spades...uh, except help on all these damned projects I've got going, but enough of that. Steve is pulling his usual silent treatment. Two days of dead air once I mailed him your confirmation afterhe was posting daily inquiries about the game tickets and your plans. As soon as the whole world is confirmed, he goes off into his world of silence until the very last minute when he's ready to move. He does this EVERY SINGLE TIME we try to make plans. Without fail. It's uncanny. Once upon a time it was interesting to observe his operations, but now it's simply a nuisance of his friendship (remember that note you wrote three or four years ago lamenting the English language void of words describing the different tiers of acquaintences one has where using the word friend seems an abuse of clarity? I do, and have pondered the essence of your brilliant query many times before and since, acknowledging the truth of it.)
Steve is an enigma to himself, not because he is inexplicably mysterious or undeserving of the best of anything he or anybody else has to offer, but merely because he cannot seem to pull himself together to commit to anything or anyone for more than a wisp of time. Any commitment is a death trap for him. He's gotten a bit better on the personal level, but his disappearing routine will pop up occasionally when he's out on the town, and is always present when it comes to nailing down plans. I'm only slightly exaggerating when I say it wouldn't surprise me in the least that we discover sometime in the eighth inning at the Yards that Steve had left his seat during the seventh inning stretch and shot for home. He does THAT kind of shit almost by rote, although I remarked to him a few months ago that he seemed to have chilled on that behavior somewhat.
Like I told you on the phone, he's heard and read this speech dozens, yes, dozens of times from me, but he always presses for an extra day, or whatever, in that cavalier manner of his, and I quietly acquiesce, but not so this coming visit. His ongoing insanity at my expense must come to an end. The most casual get together is always marred by this refusal to commit to anything save an active extension of his desire to do nothing but play, to remain rudderless, engineless, mendaciously debonair on his own callous terms. God, he drives me crazy. But, he is my friend, even best friend by virtue of our close proximities these past three years...
I do hope you get to meet him. Although it is rare for Steve to simply blow off a semi-solid plan completely, it would not surprise me if something suddenly came up to shut down his DC visit. He's a jealous god and may not want to compete for air time with someone else he might or might not awe. God, he drives me crazy.
Sorry about all this interpersonal stuff about somebody you only know as the manager of the Rhubarbs, a true baseball rookie (having NEVER played or followed the game until this year), a rookie, that is, who bounced our Walter Johnson cognizant asses right out of the ballpark. He's a genuinely good fellow, but his self-image has taken a few hits lately, and that's not settling well with him as he gets older and performs less, and yet still sees himself as the next great CEO of whatever will satisfy his Paul Bunyan ego somewhere down the line. Man, he drives me crazy. Man alive. Do I ever look forward to your visit!