Friday, August 20, 2010

Roger Clemens (micro and macro observer perspective)

I can’t help but feel bad for Roger Clemens, The Rocket. I grew up watching him pitch. He was a dominating pitcher who not only won us over with his performance but also with his apparent nice guy, guys guy manner. On the radio many people are speaking of his ego, and how amazing it is that he thought he could get away with perjury. Or the fact that he lied and repeatedly lied. Also that Mark Maguire said he did not want to talk about the past and got off scot free and Barry Bonds has stayed silent on the steroid issue. I am going to look at a different approach. Maybe, maybe he is like a lot of us that simply see the small things but miss the big picture. I personally have come into situations where the big picture maybe so obvious and apparent that I missed it. But I can tell you what people were wearing, driving or ate at the time. There are in my opinion two types of observers; micro and macro. Micro-observers, like me see the details. We pick at everything small. Sometimes it can be looking at a person’s eyes and seeing which direction they look when giving a standard answer, i.e. what is your name, compared to a non-standardized answer, i.e. what is the meaning of life. By comparing the reactions we try to gauge the veracity of the statements. Or, we notice the mannerisms, walk, common words and or any infinite amount of smaller things to try and get a grip or an understanding of the thing or person as a whole. We look at the parts to make the whole. Macro-observers look at the whole and do the opposite; they break it down. Instead of overcomplicating a person or thing they build them as a composite of their parts they see the whole and then in order to understand the “big picture” they break it down into singular parts. Eg. “She has a lot of poise and speaks well.” The macro observer would assume she is educated and well mannered, the mico observer would assume education and manners from the way she spoke. A similar result, both assuming education and well mannered, but arriving it at it from slightly different paths. What happens is the micro-observers can be wrong; it’s true, I can be wrong and I am wrong all the time. But I am also dead right in a scary way a lot of the time. It is one or the other. Macro observers are generally right. They rarely are wrong, because they do not take the parts to build the whole, they breakdown what they see, therefore the evidence for the breakdown is already established. Micro observers build the image, and hence build it correctly or incorrectly and are therefore spot on or dead wrong. Roger Clemens seems to be a micro observer as are many athletes. One singular event, a twitch, tells or grin means fast ball, slider or curve. He trained himself to see the little things, making him endearing to fans and sponsors. He was able to build batters from small details in order to hopefully exploit weaknesses other macro observers may miss. Eg. Thought: His back foot is slightly behind the leading making him an inside-out swinger, therefore a lot of liners to left therefore pitch low and away…whereas the macro observer would look at stats and say, hmm he hits to the left, let’s work the count and hope my stuff is better than his. Sometimes it is, sometimes it is not. In this case I think Roger Clements let his focus got the better of him. He focused so much on his legacy and denials of steroid use that he missed the big picture that the world appreciates honestly over legacy and it is more respectable to admit use or simply not address it, than to be outwardly denying it only to be proven a liar, a la Floyd Landis.

Don’t spit at heaven because it is bound to hit you in the face.

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