The encounter with the Canadian Snowbirds indicated is that I am in dire need of a pilgrimage to cleanse my soul after years of a sedentary lifestyle. Years ago when the Jackalopes still had precarious grip on the gang power structure of the Cactus League, no damn Canadian Snowbird would have dared approached our dinner table –– we would have fed them to the Mexican World Baseball Classic fans.
We were much younger then. We were also much wiser because our vision was not clouded with discontent or doubt. We were free to reap the benefits of our wisdom because we were not shackled by responsibilities. We had not become slaves to our material desires. Even if someone had warned us we would never be that free again, we would not have listened. We would have probably hogtied the poor bastard onto the hood of a BMW and paraded him around town, just like we did with Cubs’s fans back then.
But alas, the Jackalopes are gone forever, and Team Canada has an automatic berth in the WBC for 2017. There will be no last ride of the Jackalopes to regain past glories. This year I travel to the Cactus with four cherries. My most grizzled Cactus League companion will be an eleven year old boy with a sharp tongue, but serious impulse control issues when it comes to heckling. And breasts.
The Cactus League landscape has changed greatly since the Jackalopes last rode. It is much sinister now, and quite frankly, this setting might have eradicated the Jacakalopes quicker than four eight balls of cocaine and a bevy of strippers. If history has taught us anything, it is that the Jackalopes were not very adaptable. Hell, Baseball Prospectus’s Pitcher Abuse Points lasted longer than them.
But we can learn from the Jackalopes and ensure past mistakes are made. The Jackalopes thought they could save their world, but they were only interested in saving their world. They were willing to let other worlds burn while they protected their turf. As a result, the barbarians crept closer to the gate, and the Snowbirds became entrenched.
The past is gone though. Heroes are scattered. We can only forge a new future, a future where we spend more time drinking beer than discussing how that beer was made.