When I met Joc Pederson Friday at The Mitch he was mired in a 2-for-22 slump.
Yet he broke loose Tuesday with three HRs and 8 RBIs, then had another dinger yesterday.
I am taking partial credit for the swing, so to speak.
Here’s my recollection of the meeting:
Mark: Are you Joc?
Joc: What’s up?!
Mark: Hey, I have a friend who says he has your cat — did you have a cat, when you lived in Palo Alto? He’s actually a Paly baseball player. Ari Smolar Eisenberg.
Joc: No way!
Mark: I don’t know your parents. But your mom is Jewish like me — shabbat shalom (something Jews say to each other on Fridays and Saturdays).
Joc: (silence. Maybe a wink or blink or Jose Canseco-style loosening of the shoulder blades)
Mark: Can we do a selfie?
Mark (bending to lift his 14-pound pet, a dog named Duffy — incidentally and per the motif and like some barely remembered Hemingway story, an orphan, twice over) Oy! (something Jews over 40 say when they lift any object 10 pounds or more. Or between 10 and 40 pounds. Jews don’t lift objects over 40 pounds, they hire it out).
Mark: Good luck!
I am not at all claiming that the reason the former Brave, former Cub, former Dodger and notoriously streaky hitter (159 hrs, 759 strikeouts in 920 career MLB games) was wandering around the new $50m concert facility (with library, teen center, cafe and more) was to try to remind himself of some childhood -glory, but I did put a bit of extra chin music into that “good luck” especially coming after the bit of Hebrew mumbo jumbo.
Ok, I will say it: maybe I had nothing to do with Joc busting his slump in such a dramatic fashion. Maybe its just the Hebrew God “Yahweh” – who I sometimes call Yih-Yeh and other times ” “. Maybe Joc-Jah wanted Joc to hit all those home runs.
coda: Paly beat Valley Christian 7-0 yesterday in San Jose. Danny Peters was the winning pitcher and hit a home run in the first. If you are a Christian school and you call yourself “Warriors” who or what are you fighting? Satan? Jews? The Crusades? Kind of a false note. I was the one who yelled out “Go, Druids!”. I also joked to Mr. Smolar, whose wife ran for City Council that the next time I run I am telling people my name is pronounced “Vikes”.
cod2a: I just today met Champ Pedersen, Joc’s smarter brother, in front of Mac’s Smoke Shop. He said “it’s good to be home”. Amen, brother.
coda3: I just noticed that my four directly previous posts had words or concepts gold, blue, green and pink. And just yesterday Ted Gioia wrote about a Steve Poltz song in which he says his face goes from red to white to blue. Providence, I say.