Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Another feel good

Sometimes circumstances transcend the action which takes place. Sometimes just being present can speak volumes. Last night Jon Lester did something for which professional sports have a peculiar knack - he elevated doing what he does every day into a moving witness to the strength and courage that is possible in man. After having been diagnosed last year with a treatable form of anaplastic large-cell lymphoma and missing the end of the season and much of the off-season undergoing treatment, after coming face-to-face with his mortality he did something so few of us can ever do - he did his day-to-day job, and brought the hopes and fears, the dreams and reality of thousands of cancer patients with him.

He taught us all a lesson - you don't have to give in, you just have to do what you need to do. There were no tearful speeches, no 'win one for the Gipper' scenes throughout this ordeal. He merely took his news, went home, did what he needed to and came back. And won the game. He showed that to be super-human, sometimes all it takes is to be human. He showed that you can come back, you can beat cancer. And he showed you can do it all with quiet class. As Dan Shaughnessy said in the Boston Globe, "Tonight all of us are Red Sox fans." Good show, Jon. Play ball.