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Sports commentary: Striving to be more like Spidey

Published: Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013 1:13 a.m. CDT

Have you ever wondered why Spider-Man’s mutation included a heightened sense of trouble? Do spiders have a Spidey Sense?

Maybe they do. As my high school biology teacher could attest, my knowledge (or interest) in such things is little.

The other day, it occurred to me that Spider-Man’s heightened awareness might not have been a result of his mutation, but from his years spent working in the newspaper industry.

The other day, I was scribbling golf scores at Spring Creek Golf Course at the Three Rivers boys golf meet, when one of the meet directors walked up to me.

“If you write your name and email address down, we can send those to you when the meet is done,” the nice gentlemen said. “That way, you wouldn’t have to write them all down.”

“Really, that would be nice,” I said. So, I added our account down next to the list of coaches and other media outlets.

I thanked the man before he walked away, then continued to write down scores by hand.

It wasn’t that I didn’t trust that man’s intentions. I’ve met folks like him a thousand times. They all intend to do just what they promise, but they don’t always deliver.

My Spidey Sense went off, saying if you write them down, you don’t have to depend on someone else. So I did.

A few hours later, I was at my desk as we received calls from two other papers looking for full results from the meet. One of those papers had printed their email address in the same notebook I had.

But the email hadn’t been sent out, and time was growing scarce.

So I sent them my typed up version and moved on with life.

The email arrived at about 9:30 p.m., about 7 hours after the meet concluded. By then, I had written my story, typed the box and designed all of the front page.

But just because I have developed this sense, doesn’t mean that I always heed its warning.

The very next day I was looking for a tidbit to put in the blurbs we place on the top of B1 every day.

I stumbled across a story saying that Reds GM Walt Jockety had every intention of retaining Dusty Baker as the team’s manager.

Great, I thought. Dusty has an interest to readers here after being the manager of the Cubs for a (doomed) spell. Some readers will have a reaction to the Reds sticking with him.

As I typed up the blurb, my Spidey Sense went off.

Just like knowing that golf meet managers often fail to send results in a timely fashion, I’ve come to learn that when a GM makes a point of saying that a manager’s job is safe, the opposite is probably true.

Just take a look at the top of this page and you’ll see I should have listened to that sense. The Reds don’t trusty in Dusty any more than the Cubs did after the 2006 season.

Next time I’ll be mindful of that sense, and continue to strive to be the best “friendly neighborhood sports editor” that I can be.

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