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The first time they’re together she seeks him out.
She goes to him.
She gives in.
But mostly, mostly she just takes…
She stands outside his bedroom door barely moving, hell she’s barely breathing; her body tense and near trembling, eyes squinted and focused as her hand rests on the doorknob and she pauses for a moment, trying to gather her bearings and collect her thoughts.
She’s not entirely sure how she got there, why she’s standing in front of his door…what exactly she’s looking for. All she knows is one minute she’d been laying in bed, staring up at the ceiling—contemplating life and love, death and grief, trying to force herself to feel something, anything; the pinch of her nails as she dug them into the palm of her hand, wishing to break skin, just barely registering—and the next she’d been slipping out of the room she shares with Tara, trying not to disturb the other woman as she had crept past her sleeping form and out the door.
Unthinkingly she had moved—footsteps soft and light like he had taught her—towards the bedroom at the end of the hall.
(Always, always, him.)
She could lie to herself.
Pretend that she doesn’t understand why it’s him she can’t seem to shake from her system, why it’s him she’s seeking out in the middle of the night.
(Why it was him who had taken up permanent residence in her torn up brain; his voice quietly echoing in her ear, gentle instructions, as she had traveled the long and dangerous road that had lead her to Alexandria’s walls.)
But she doesn’t feel like playing games with her already muddled mind right now. She’s had a headache for the last few days—they come and go at random—and avoiding unwanted thoughts only seems to add to the pain even more—her free hand lifting to brush at the circular scar she knows mars her forehead.
The truth is she’s a stupid, stupid, girl.
The truth is it’s been him for some time now.
(Everything she had thought she’d ever wanted going up in flames and burning away in a blaze of moonshine and whispered revelations.)
Obit of the Day: A Man for All Seasons (and 5 Decades)
Saturnino Orestes Armas Arrieta Minoso, better known as “Minnie,” stepped to the plate as a major leaguer on April 19, 1949 when he was 23 (or 26*) years old. He final major league swing was taken on October 5, 1980 when he was 54. What happened in the ensuring 31 years made Mr. Minoso a legend in Chicago, a near Hall of Famer, and a bit of a sideshow which may have actually improved his chances at immortality.
Born in Cuba, Mr. Minoso began playing baseball as a cane field worker, organizing his own youth team. At 19 he talked his way onto a local and company team where he earned less than $25 a week playing for both franchises. He became a star in 1945 when he earned Rookie of the Year honors while hitting .300 for Marianao in Havana. The following year he signed a contract with the New York Cubans of the Negro National League.
Mr. Minoso played in New York for three seasons, helping to lead the team to victory in the Negro League World Series in 1947. In ‘47 and ‘48, he started the Negro League East-West Game ( the league’s all-star game) at third base. By the end of 1948, the Negro Leagues were starting to be plundered by MLB after Jackie Robinson’s successful integration of the game with the Brookly Dodgers. Mr. Minoso was one of those scooped up, signed by the Cleveland Indians, who had already featured the first black American Leaguer, Larry Doby.
Playing nine games in 1949, and becoming the first black Latino to play in the majors, Mr. Minoso collected the first of his 1,963 hits on May 4. But with all his talent he could not find his place on the team and spent much of his time in the minor leagues where he dominated. Yet the Indians still had no room for the speedy hitter and traded him to the Chicago White Sox on April 30, 1951.
The very next day Minnie Minoso became the first black player in Chicago White Sox history. Starting at third base and batting third, Mr. Minoso introduced himself with authority, hitting a 2-run home run in his first-ever Chicago at-bat.
Mr. Minoso had found a home. Over the next decade, he was one of the building blocks of the “Go Go Sox”, a team based on a speed and pitching. (In a melancholy coincidence, Mr. Minoso was not on the team during the Sox’ lone World Series appearance of the ’50s, having been traded back to Cleveland in 1958 and the Sox advancing to the Fall Classic in 1959.) From his debut until the end of his first run with the Sox (1951-1957), Mr. Minoso led the league in stolen bases twice and triples three times. He also was the league leader in hit-by-pitches six of seven seasons. Named to the AL All-Star team five times during that period, he also finished fourth in the MVP vote twice (1953, 1954).
After he brief sojourn to Cleveland, the White Sox, still under the ownership of Bill Veeck who had signed Mr. Minoso originally, brought him back for the 1960 season. In his second Chicago stint, Mr. Minoso led the league in hits and hit-by-pitches, and earned his last of three Gold Gloves. He was traded again after 1961 and played a season each for St. Louis and Washington before returning to Chicago for one last time in 1964 - or so everyone thought.
Upon his retirement in 1964, Mr. Minoso was considered a upper-tier player but received only 1.8% of the vote in his first appearance on the Hall of Fame ballot in 1969. According to the rules governing the Hall of Fame, Mr. Minoso’s low vote total meant that he was dropped from the ballot.
All the while, Mr. Minoso continued his ball playing career by heading south to the Mexican League. He would play eight seasons, now as a slower-footed first baseman, until 1973 when he finally retired for good at the age of 48. (As a 48-year-old, to be fair, he had a heck of a season, hitting .265, 12 home runs and batting in 83 runs.)
Then in 1976, Mr. Minoso’s friend Mr. Veeck had re-purchased the Chicago White Sox and offered the once nimble infielder a chance to play professional baseball in a fourth decade. At the time only 13 men had played in parts of four decades and the last two (Ted Willians and former White Sox pitcher Early Wynn) had not suited up since 1963. So Mr. Minoso made history, yet again, when he returned to the field on September 1, 1976 for the White Sox. Although he went hitless in his first game, the following day he singled to left in the second inning becoming the oldest major leaguer to ever record a hit, two months shy of his 51st birthday. He played a final game on September 13 and hung up his cleats for the second time.
In October 1980, Mr. Veeck gave Mr. Minoso a chance to stand alone in the record books. The now 54-year-old coach was activated for the last two days of the season allowing him to become the only modern-day five-decade player. (Nick Altrock, a pitcher who debuted with the Louisville Colonels in 1898, was a pinch-hitter for the Washington Senators in 1933.) He went hitless in two at-bats in two games.
Note: In 1990, White Sox owner Jerry Reinsdorf tried to get Mr. Minoso an at-bat in the final season of Comiskey Park but baseball commissioner Fay Vincent did not think it was “in the best interests of baseball.”
As this was his, truly, final at-bat. Mr. Minoso was returned to the Hall of Fame ballot in 1986. And although his statistics had not changed, he reputation earned him slightly more popularity, finding himself on more than 20% of the ballots on two occasions. However, the Hall of Fame requires players to earn 75% of the vote to be placed among the pantheon of greats. After 1999, he was dropped from the writers’ ballott and his case for enshrinment was handed to a Veterans Committee.
In the most recent election by the committe, Mr. Minoso failed to earn induction, finding himself one vote shy of the nine needed to carry him into the Hall. It is unlikely that he will ever get in. (Although the Hall of Fame has an unusual, and disconcerting history, of admitting candidates after they have died and are unable to enjoy the accolades. The most recent example is Cubs’ third baseman Ron Santo.)
But the White Sox never doubted Mr. Minoso’s greatness. They retired his jersey number, 9, in 1983 and unveiled a statue in his honor outside of U.S. Cellular Field on September 2004. Working as a White Sox coach, Mr. Minoso was, by now, a franchise legend. Similar in personality to his north side counterpart, Ernie “Mr. Cub” Banks, Mr. Minoso was often called “Mr. White Sox.” An amabassador for the sport, he was considered a mentor by even current players. White Sox shortstop Alexei Ramirez, also from Cuba, felt that Mr. Minoso was “like a father.”
And Mr. Minoso still had a bit of the national pastime in him. The Independent League St. Paul Saints, run by Mr. Veeck’s grandson Mike, allowed Mr. Minoso’s the honor of an at-bat in 1993 (when the former slugger was 67) and he grounded out to the pitcher. A decade later in his last-ever professional at-bat, Mr. Minoso walked. And it must have been a sight seeing a 77-year-old man trot down the basepaths becoming, probably, the only person in baseball history with a career that spanned seven decades.
Minnie Minoso died on March 1, 2015 at the age of 90.
* There are debates about whether Mr. Minoso was born in 1925, or 1923, or 1922. Various articles have his death listed at age 89, 90 and 92. I have decided to use 1925, which is the date used by basball-reference.com
I wasn’t sure what time to be here for my first shift in the new position. My new boss doesn’t come in until around 9, but I’m used to being here by 7:30 so I arrived around 7:45.
I got myself access to the dropbox we use and made a login to take the training modules. I’ll be walking our customers through these as part of my new job, so I’m taking them myself to get up to speed.
Bossman just came over to say hi, ask what hours I’m working, and tell me which training modules to take. My customers are on the west coast now so I’ll usually be working 9-6 my time, except when I have class. Luckily, my hours are totally flexible.
Hey guys! Here’s this week’s prompt for Bethyl Day:
I left it open-ended so feel free to interpret it however you wish. :)
Sunday for a lot of people is TWD Day. To us, it’s Bethyl Day. Feel free to participate by creating something based on the theme — be it any form of digital, traditional, or written art, or simply post a text post about something you love about Bethyl in relation to the prompt.
This is meant to be a way of “looking on the bright side” of our ship again so I hope you’ll participate!
Bringing you Bethyl, on the bright side,
First day at the new job and I find notes like this in my temporary cubicle. They even stocked my desk with office supplies! I think I made a good decision to join this team :)
Plus, my supervisor and main coworker have my first week’s agenda all scheduled, including lunch meetings. So this is how the professional world is supposed to be!
Hey Everybody! We’re looking for an outgoing and engaged creative communicator to join the Stamps Social Media Team! The position is paid, part time (16 hours per week), and for 6 months with the possibility of extension. Start date: As soon as possible.
Okay, another quickie for 90’s anime week since it’s so much fun. I know Pokemon technically doesn’t count ‘cause it’s still ongoing, but it debuted in the 90’s and I used to watch it back then, when it featured just Gen 1 Pokemon. I’ve always been partial to Team Rocket.
It would make me so happy if Cas could be in filler episodes.
I just think they’d get an extra dynamic from Cas being there. Cas showing off his knowledge of yoga, Cas going undercover and being either awful or amazing depending on the cover he’s given, Cas comforting victims by quietly listening to them and letting them grieve, then kicking ass when he finds the monster.