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Old 27-04-2012, 01:45 PM   #1
Barrett Dorko
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Default The Art

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He already knew he could coach. All you had to do was look at each of your players and ask yourself: What story does this guy wish someone would tell him about himself? And then you told the guy that story.

Chad Harbach, The Art of Fielding
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People of many sorts enter the clinical milieu of my office with only the story of their pain, and they eventually leave with a story of their recovery as well. If they don’t know that second story I haven’t succeeded, and that’s relatively rare.

Barrett Dorko, Shallow Dive
I don’t read many novels, and, in fact, I’m actually listening to this one. The Art… has possessed me and many lines remind me of my own writing in years past. Of course, it’s much, much better – The Art I mean.

There’s a description of baseball that I really liked (slightly paraphrased):

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In its quiet way, baseball is an extravagantly harrowing game. Most of the others were melees. When playing them you could redeem yourself through hustle and desire. But baseball was different. It was Homeric; a series of isolated contests. You couldn’t storm around. You stood, and waited and tried to still your mind.
This reminds me of what being a therapist can be like. That is, if they practice in a certain way – the way I try to do.
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Old 27-04-2012, 04:30 PM   #2
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For Schwartz this formed the paradox at the heart of baseball, or football, or any other sport. You loved it because you considered it an art: an apparently pointless affair, undertaken by people with special aptitude, which sidestepped attempts to paraphrase its value yet somehow seemed to communicate something true or even crucial about The Human Condition. The Human Condition being, basically, that we're alive and have access to beauty, can even erratically create it, but will someday be dead and will not.

Baseball was an art, but to excel at it you had to become a machine. It didn't matter how beautifully you performed SOMETIMES, what you did on your best day, how many spectacular plays you made. You weren't a painter or a writer--you didn't work in private and discard your mistakes, and it wasn't just your masterpieces that counted.

Chad Harbach, The Art of Fielding
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Old 27-04-2012, 05:46 PM   #3
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Hmmm...that makes baseball sound more unforgiving than I think it really is.

David Freese is an average fielder at 3rd base, yet he won the World Series MVP last year with his bat.

Until recently Yadier Molina was only considered an average hitter with a lifetime average under .260. His skills behind the plate, however, are so rare and accomplished that Tony LaRussa recently referred to him as the most valuable player on his team and said he would keep him in the line up if he batted .000- and that was when Albert Pujols played for the Cardinals.

The point is- and I wish more therapists understood this- is that greatness is about coming through in the clutch consistently. This, of course, is impossible if you practice accidentally. You have to practice with intention and purpose. You need to have a set of principles to draw on that are solid and produce predictable results.

We have that now, but startling few use it. The lack of expression of any artistry in PT clinics across the country is so obvious it's almost vulgar. What a shame.
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Old 27-04-2012, 08:39 PM   #4
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When your moment came, you had to be ready, because if you screwed up, everyone would know whose fault it was. What other sport not only kept a stat as cruel as the error but posted it on the scoreboard for everyone to see?”

Chad Harbach, The Art of Fielding
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Old 27-04-2012, 09:00 PM   #5
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Billy Buckner still hasn't lived this one down.

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Old 28-04-2012, 03:37 AM   #6
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Have you watched the Curb YOur Enthusiasm episode with Bill Buckner and Mookie Wilson? Priceless.
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Old 28-04-2012, 02:21 PM   #7
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There were no whys in a person's life, and very few hows. In the end, in search of useful wisdom, you could only come back to the most hackneyed concepts, like kindness, forbearance, infinite self patience.” Solomon and Lincoln: This too shall pass. Damn right it will. Or Chekhov: Nothing passes. Equally true.

Chad Harbach, The Art of Fielding
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Old 28-04-2012, 04:35 PM   #8
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OUCH!!

I triple-dog-dare you to read that at the next CSM conference, Barrett. You may be stoned to death.
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Old 28-04-2012, 05:07 PM   #9
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As Johnnie Depp says in those movie trailers for Dark Shadows, "They tried to stone me to death - it didn't work."

Typically there's a return to the notion that the world has a causal nature.

It doesn't.
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Old 28-04-2012, 06:06 PM   #10
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The Human Condition being, basically, that we’re alive and have access to beauty, can even erratically create it, but will someday be dead and will not.

Chad Harbach, The Art of Fielding
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