I had a really vivid dream the other night where I was a professional baseball player in the midst of a heated game. I had gotten on first and was excited about stealing second. Did I mention I was Black? I'm a white dude, in case you didn't know.
I got off to a big lead, and as the pitcher went into his stretch, I got a great jump towards second. I had it stolen easy, but as I got to where the base should have been, the bag was nowhere to be found! I had beaten the throw by a mile and was frantically looking around for the base when I was tagged by the shortstop. When the umpire called me out, I was absolutely irate and hopping up and down.
The umpires got together for a long deliberation, during which time I was pleading my case to anyone who would listen. I remember discussing the matter with a Japanese teammate through his interpreter. I let him know that I was a born base stealer and it's how I made my living, and to deny me of the tangible base to take, they were denying me of my God given right! The two Japanese men seemed to agree with me based on the looks of disapproval on their faces. I can still picture them shaking their heads in disgust and disbelief about my situation.
I saw that the umpires looked to be wrapping up their discussion, so I said to my manager that if he didn't plan on arguing to the point of getting thrown out of the game, I was going to. He assured me that it was his plan to do so, but when I asked him what kind of theatrics he would be displaying during his potential upcoming tantrum, I wasn't impressed with what he had in mind. I suggested he try pulling up the second base they had just put in as well as all three other bases before being dragged off the field to demonstrate what little respect these umpires had for the bases and the rules of baseball in general. He acted as if he was considering it, but I got the feeling he was sticking to a low-key fit that in no way was elevating himself to the passion that the situation demanded.
Sure enough, the umps called me out, and my manager did his best to honor me by getting thrown out of the game, as promised, but it really did seem lackluster compared to the performance I could give. It just seemed to me that Skip didn't share the same passion that I had. I turned my hat around, rolled up my sleeves, and got ready to dig up out those bases and toss them all over the place for all the base swipers, all my teammates (especially the Japanese ones), and for anyone who has felt injustice at the hands of corrupt authority figures.
This is when I woke up. Still white. And broke.