Josh Hamilton's story of failure and redemption does not begin or end with this incident. Anyone who's had the misfortune of being saddled with this type of person in their lives knows it all by now. The relapses, the incessant excuses, the apologies, the contrition, rise and repeat. Most are anonymous. We'll never know their names. But we have our preconceptions, from the street junkie who robs to feed his habit to the lonely employee, who comes in every day and does his job well enough not to get fired. This person is diligent about his employment because he holds on to it only to feed the beast, and their biggest fear is not exposure but losing the lifeline to that steady weekly/bi-monthly paycheck.
They live their lives in quiet desperation, their only motivation is getting high and staying that way for as long as possible. They watch their faces getting older in the mirror and they don't notice. They see the best years of their lives pass right by them like a Roger Clemens fastball and they don't even fake trying to take a swing. The drug is the thing, it is their reason for being.
Some are demonized, some are shunned and others are pitied. But the worst are the ones who have a steady conga line of enablers, who time and time again excuse the addicts' behavior and give them the interminable "second chance". This is one such man. I'm not a fan of deviant social behavior, but it is less odious when the person is flying solo. No one else cares about him, no one bats an eye when he is seen lying in the hallway of his apartment building, too fucked up to make it home. Let him sleep it off, we think-and go about our daily business. They're only destroying themselves anyway, and no one else cares.
But this guy has a wife and children. One day, when they are old enough to understand, some asshole in their middle school english class will be sitting in front of their laptop looking at these photos, and everyone will mock. His children do not deserve this, but in this age of portable technology and the world wide web, there is no escaping the public scrutiny and humiliation of having a loved one's most embarrassing moments caught for posterity.
Just a thought-I wonder if he was contemplating his relationship with Christ when this photo was snapped-
I present to you now an excerpt of the press conference Hamilton gave on his "relapse"-
"I'm embarrassed about it, personally, for the Rangers, for my wife, my children and my family," Hamilton said at his locker with a handful of his teammates joining the crowd of media that had formed. "It reinforces one of the things that I can't have is alcohol. It's unfortunate that it happened. I was out there getting ready for the season and took my focus off the number one factor in my recovery - my relationship with Christ. I hate that this happened..."I wasn't mentally fit or spiritually fit," he said. "It just crossed my mind ‘Can I have a drink?' Obviously, I can't. One drink leads to two and two drink leads to 10 or 12. When I was in AA, one saying I heard was one drink is too many and 1,000 is never enough. Alcohol just doesn't mix well with me."
Newsflash for you, big guy-It wasn't the alcohol-it was your behavior AFTER you drank and the fact that you were stupid enough to let yourself get photographed.
Anyone can relapse. It happens.
And unlike what they tell you at Alcoholics Anonymous, it's not that big of a fucking deal when you do. They want you to believe it's a big deal, that you'll be fighting this "disease" forever because if they told you otherwise it would be bad for business. And just what pray tell would they do with all those chips they give recovering addicts to memorialize their days, weeks, months and years of sobriety? Hold massive Bingo tournaments all over the country?
So it's in their best interests to keep you scared. But how exactly do you explain your actions? I think your "relationship" with Christ should take a backseat to the humiliation you caused your wife and family.
What this incident reinforces is that as long as he can hit a baseball, all will be forgiven-ALWAYS. He was the belle of the ball at last year's All-star Game, a tale of prodigious talent laid low by the wretched combination of drug addiction and hideous tattoos. Two things stand out about this which really sums up just how warped people are when it comes to sports and celebrity-
1) A fan rants on some sports program about the timing of exposing this incident because the Texas Rangers are in the midst of a heated pennant race. For these numbskulls there is no bigger outrage than having a peripheral issue distract fans and media alike from the sacred cow that is the pennant race. I'm sure while this concerned citizen is in his basement watching the game on his flatscreen his son is somewhere smoking marijuana joints dipped in embalming fluid and his daughter is out practicing for her first appearance on Ed Power's "Dirty Debutantes".
2) While Hamilton's face is in full view in these photos, the hoochies that actively participated in this Caligula-esque romp managed to have their identities partially concealed. They too should be exposed for the world to see, so that they have something to explain to their loved ones. His excuse was alcohol-what would be theirs for committing acts of public whorish debauchery? Someone PLEASE tell me who these robo-twats are.
I find it impossible to feel sympathy for this guy. He is being painted on sports talk radio as a victim of a dreadful disease, a man who succumbed to the siren call of his addiction and relapsed in a moment of weakness. Well, he wasn't found outside an OTB sleeping in the gutter with a losing double exacta ticket in one hand and an empty bottle of Wild Irish Rose in the other. A guy like that has problems. This motherfucker was living out the porno fantasies of every physically overgrown and mentally stunted jock in America. He doesn't belong in the Betty Ford Clinic-he belongs in the Playboy Mansion catching crabs sportfucking adult film stars in Hugh Hefner's infamous grotto.
So for you and other dickheads like you, Josh-here is that missing step they don't tell you about in those AA meetings you so frequently attend-
AMEN TO THAT, BROTHER.