Motels have cheap walls, dirty carpets and a bad reputation and I love being there; rooted in the Wayfarer’s Inn. In Don Quixote they were called Ventas or roadside Inns from the Latin word ventus or wind bringing human characters inside doors; pit stops along the journey.
They scream of Mercury at the cross roads; a place where destinies collide. The priest, magician, professor, politician, plumber, Ralph the traveling insurance salesman and the Jorgenson family of four. It’s good to have a breakfast table or a swimming pool where the plot can be electrified and shuffled and plans go amuck and become unpredictable jewels.
I worked at a live-in Motel in San Francisco. Everyone had a chore to keep the place up and running and in return we received room and board and meals. I was the third shift desk clerk. There were a lot of drunks stumbling inside during the wee hours. I was either a dog catcher taming the early morning beasts or joining in. One guy was a quiet drunk. He was older and he told me stories.
A Native American Indian Chief had arrived in Israel without any baggage or a place to stay. He walked down the airplane steps, turned north and didn’t stop until he reached Peki’in in the Upper Galilee and the cave where according to legend, Rabbi Simeon bar Yochai and his son hid for 13 years to avoid punishment for criticizing the Roman Government.
WhenYochai reentered the world, his eyes were believed to be lasers capable of blinding people. He spent the 13 years in deep meditation.
When I wasn’t working at the motel, I panhandled money for my new friend and bought him half pints of cheap vodka and let him talk. We walked together to the Salvation Army on Geary street and he would browse through military fatigues and knives. He was once a psychologist for rich people and then he got bored.
So he became an itinerant psychologist going where few professionals dared to go; inside the flop houses of the Tenderloin. He lowered himself into the metaphorical mud and splashed around with male prostitutes, transvestites, and drunk native americans. Being at his side didn’t feel like an apprenticeship, but I think it was. Our moments together brought me to Zuni fetishes.
The sculptor sees what no one else sees in the rock and removes the excess and after hours and hours of chiseling; the shape of an animal appears. It struck me as beyond psychology into the animal spirit realm and I liked it.
I stuffed the feeling in my backpack mind. It lingered after my friend passed away a few years later. It was with me yesterday when Anthony Rizzo stepped to the plate at Miller Park.
Rizzo hit .331 with 26 home runs and 34 doubles for the Tucson Padres of the Pacific Coast League in 2011. He was hyped like so many players are. The baseball world knows it’s the second coming. The rapture happens at least 12 times per year. George Springer enjoyed the moment earlier this season and yesterday Oscar Taveras of the Cardinals had his day and he hit a home run.
On June 9, 2011, Rizzo struck out in his first major league at bat and a few innings later, he tripled, but struggled in his debut season and was traded to the Chicago Cubs. He was happy to be in Chicago. The Brewers and Marco Estrada were scheduled to face the Cubs and Rizzo Friday.
But Rizzo was 1 for 21 against Estrada in hi career and kept out of the lineup Friday night. But Rizzo was 6 for 16 with 2 home runs and five RBI’s against Wily Peralta and back in the lineup Saturday afternoon. Make that four home runs and nine RBI’s against Peralta. Rizzo hit two upper deck home runs yesterday and drove in four. The Cubs won 8-0 behind the pitching of Jason Hammel.
Hammel is now 6-0 against the Brewers for his career with a 2.25 ERA. There are ways to explain these favorable match ups. Rizzo feeds on Peralta’s 97 mph fastball and senses when a slider will be hung. But he can’t figure out Estrada who throws a lollipop 75 mph change-up. And Hammel keeps the free swinging Brewers off-balance.
But Hammel faces other free swinging team and gets shelled. And Rizzo hits other off speed pitchers. All the science and psychology and incredibly inspirational statistical research sometimes has to drops to its knees and do like an imaginary Einstein along the beaten paths of the MilkyWay…..listen to the wind.
The Brewers are 33-23.