There's a chance for some healing here. A chance for closure. But for whom, really?
There's been a movement afoot to have Steve Bartman throw out a first pitch at a Cubs' home game during the World Series but the man who has not ever sought some kind of cosmic payback - or a real one despite the offers - for the completely unacceptable wrath he endured in the wake of his infamous moment thirteen years ago is about as likely to accept an invitation as Donald Trump is to gracefully accept defeat at the polls.
For that, I say good on Bartman and I don't see how anyone couldn't understand. He won't do it and neither would I. A Steve Bartman appearance might ramp up the goodwill, but if he throws out a first pitch and the Cubs lose that night? Yikes.
Still, I can't help but fantasize about what a perfect Bartman pregame ceremony would look like.
It entails a helicopter landing in centre field with him emerging from it along with Eddie Vedder, Bill Murray, Bob Newhart, John Cusack, Barack Obama, Oprah and, sure, the ghost of Harry Caray.
They'd carry Bartman towards the infield where he'd see a long, long line of the people who'd abused and threatened him, tossed beer and all manner of repulsive invective his way. The people who made his life a living hell because he'd made a common baseball fan mistake that most of them - without the benefit of hindsight - would, themselves, have made too. (When you watch the video, below, wonder about just how lucky the man beside Bartman feels to this day, as he came that close to beating Bartman to the ball.)
They'd all line up, and as he approached each of them, they'd turn and bend over so he could give them all a swift kick to the arse, merrily skipping from one to another as Caray sang Take Me Out to the Ballgame.
All the while, a herd of goats would graze peacefully in left field.
That done, Bartman would pick up a ball lying near the mound, coolly toss it, in underhand fashion, to Cubs' catcher David Ross, blow a kiss to the roaring crowd and hop in a limo carrying Kanye West and a half-dozen supermodels. Cubs win. At least that night.
You know, closure. Healing.
Doesn't appear that Mr. Bartman wants or needs it, however.
For those who feel guilty or sympathetic about his poor treatment, don't look for his forgiveness; he doesn't owe it in a public display. For those who insist it is Bartman who owes the apology, I'd remind you that a whole hell of a lot had to go wrong for the Cubs to blow it that night back in 2003. An apology? Bartman certainly doesn't owe that either.
He wants to be left alone, so be it. At the very least, he's earned that.
That and a crowd-sourced NLCS Championship ring, delivered to his home.
By helicopter, of course.