Write Derek at drksmart @ gmail.com
Write Phil at phil.bencomo @ gmail.com
Of Things Coming and Going
by Derek Smart
I could hurl curses in the general direction of 2004 - small scale events like the Cubs' final, ignominious fate, and infinitely more important tragic world events, particularly recent ones, provide plenty of fuel for a tumult of rage at destiny.
However, I won't succumb to the temptation to rail; to all alone beweep my outcast state would not only be without purpose, but would show tremendous disrespect for all the blessings I've received over the past year.
In general, we humans tend to concentrate so much on what went wrong over a given period, that we forget about and therefore do dishonor to the things we have to be thankful for. So in an attempt to rise above my baser instincts, here are a few of the things that, for me, made 2004 worth living.
I have a lovely, healthy baby girl (born 15 minutes before the first pitch of the 2004 Cubs' home opener, no less), I have a wife who continues to be my greatest source of strength and my best friend, and I have been given the opportunity to be a part of a tremendous collection of writers, thinkers, and people here at All-Baseball.
On the Cubs front, we've seen the emergence of young stars like Aramis Ramirez and Carlos Zambrano, the establishment of Jim Hendry as one of the more intelligent and creative deal-making GMs in the game, and despite the bitterness of the finish, the first consecutive winning seasons for the Cubs since 1971-72.
These things and many others offer plenty of reason for me to thankful for what's past, and eager for what's to come. The Cubs should be contenders for the foreseeable future, I get to write with some of the finest, most talented gentlemen on the internet, and for some of the most passionate Cub and baseball fans around, and best of all, I get to watch this little beastie grow up.
Thanks to all of you for welcoming me here these past couple of months. I hope you can look back and see the things that made 2004 a good year for you, and that whatever positives might have come your way in the last 366 days, that 2005 brings them again and tenfold.