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Pain Was My Friend

By Pete O’Shea

Pain Was My Friend

By Pete O’Shea

ISBN # 978-0-9986992-5-7

Copyright 2017 TGP LLC

All rights reserved worldwide

Edited by Eli Gonzalez and Lil Barcaski

Book Design by Ymmy Marketing LLC

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Printed in USA


I have had several jobs throughout the course of my life but the majority of them have one common thread. I am a storyteller. It’s a tough needle to thread to make a living this way, but it is so much fun. It is also very rewarding because you get to make people think, feel, and smile. I can instantly bond with total strangers by weaving a narrative that entertains, inspires, and empowers.

I have been a feature writer, a columnist, a comedian, a spokesperson, an author, a motivational speaker, and a talk show host. They are all vastly different yet not so much so when it is all said and done. I get to tell stories and people pay me for that. I’m very fortunate and it is all possible, even though it’s not because of anything I did. It is an honor and a privilege to entertain and uplift people through the various means I’ve been gifted.

It is so fulfilling to see people take the stories I tell and use them in their lives. There is no greater feeling on this earth then making people smile. There is nothing that makes me feel as complete as when I make people laugh. When they all chuckle in unison while you are on a stage, their collective breath knocks me backwards. No matter how much I’m hurting or if I’m sad, I can crank up the storytelling skills and bring it. It’s a gift from God and I have done my best not to squander it. Words are powerful, incredibly so. When they are properly strung together, they come alive and become three-dimensional.

When I tell the story of my miracle cure, like I get to do in this book and on countless stages and altars, lives are saved. Hope is restored and God gets the glory. I’ve been trained by the highest power to cultivate and captivate. Sometimes I even do it without any conscience awareness. Ain’t God good?

When I speak at a church and tell the story that you will read in chapter 12, I’m always worried that flies will go in everybody’s mouths because their jaws drop so much. It is a manifesto that is beyond magnificent and you couldn’t make it up if you tried. It defies logic. That is where faith comes into place. If you intend to suspend logic, you better have tons of faith to substitute for it. If you believe in an all knowing, omni-powerful God, then keep reading this book and be prepared to have your life altered.

Although the many different types of pain can be categorized in physical, emotional, spiritually, or psychological, there is an innumerable amount. Has anyone managed to sail through life without experiencing some form of agony? If there is someone, I’d sure like to meet them and pick their brains. Since I’m reasonable certain there isn’t, let’s go the other way and put all of our sufferings in one big pile and you can pick my brain on the subject. I have had my fill of it. Experiencing pain is just a part of life, a right of passage that everyone goes through. Young or old, rich or poor you will get hurt physically, emotionally, spiritually and more. Internal wounds can take a lifetime to heal if not addressed with compassion, expertise, and divine grace. Most times going through the pain isn’t the worst part, talking about it and healing from it is.

An era in our history when bullying is driving teens to commit suicide, where racism riots are happening in our shores, and people within the church hurting others within the church, I now understand why my life turned out the way it has. I’ve learned through experience that God doesn’t cause pain, but He will use it to teach, prune, and recalibrate us. My mission is to simply help people who are suffering, regardless of from what. I didn’t ask for this but I am beyond humbled that I have been chosen for this vital assignment.

I experienced physical pain on and off throughout my formative years and then for 17 consecutive years while I tried in vain to master adulthood. Like you, I have also dealt with the other kinds for even longer. That sort of makes me an authority on the subject and since I like to tell stories, here goes.

This book is designed to make you see things differently. God pulled me out of the depths of despair and back into the land of the living. I have chronicled it all so that He can now do the same for any of you. I know other people who are also on this type of mission. It can sometimes be arduous and seemingly endless. It is not for the faint of heart.

I know you are not supposed to say hate, but I hate pain. Despite how close we became and all of the stories I tell about it, I wish I could obliterate it from the planet. I will live until I die with the mindset that this seemingly impossible notion could happen and who knows, maybe it can. Imagine a world without pain.

If I had control of my destiny, and I know that I do not, I’d love to travel the entire world telling my miracle story. Line them up in halls, churches, heck, stadiums even and I will regal them with my God story. Give me a stage and a microphone every remaining day of my life and I am living heaven on earth. It’s the thing I know how to do, as if I’ve been groomed for it.

My favorite part of giving a speech or doing a comedy show is right afterwards. If you are attentive beforehand, you can see the life struggles and pain on people’s faces. You can read their sullen body language and see their drooped shoulders. When the show is over, you can witness a metamorphosis that includes a beaming smile and a warm embrace. I always stick around after and spend time with the audience. It isn’t strictly an ego thing, ok, ok, maybe it is a little bit. I truly do love to see and hear the effect I had on people. If you can provide even momentary solace from life’s ups and downs, it can be extremely wonderful. I’ll stay sometimes for hours afterwards, chatting and mostly listening to people’s stories. There is so much more that unites us than divides us.

My sincere hope with this book is for it to fall in the hands of people who have been hurting for years. For people that know God or don’t to read it and it give them solace. That it speak a word of peace, love and tranquility over their lives. That they get a different perspective on what pain really is and move on from whatever hurt them. That it give them the strength they need to get off of addictive medication, or even worse, that they stop self-medicating with drugs and/or alcohol. That they wake up to a new day, a new beginning in their lives. Most importantly, that they reconnect with the man called Jesus, and they get connected to a church and find their true purpose in life.

I also hope it continues to open doors and I can take my message of hope and humor to more churches, men’s groups, addiction groups, and wherever else God wants to send me. I wish to initiate the change I seek in this world by using the story telling skills I have honed and harnessed for over three decades. I want us to look each other in the eye and collectively be there for one another. I have experienced more pain than I ever signed up for but only because I know God has a pay-off for it. If the gain is only mine, then I did something horribly wrong.

Gods plans for you are good. I learned all this the hard way and through my personal story I’d like to tell you all about it. This way, you can work smarter not harder to overcome and not just be a survivor. No my friend, you can become a conqueror.

Table of Contents


Chapter 1 Me and Pain, We’re Real Tight

Chapter 2 The Say Hey Kid, Dollar Bill and Me

Chapter 3 Pain Trumps Promise

Chapter 4 A Day in the Life Becomes a Daze of a Life

Chapter 5 Now What?

Chapter 6 When Properly Converted, Pain Turns into Anger

Chapter 7 Rampant Intoxication

Chapter 8 I begin to Alienate Everybody

Chapter 9 A Slow but Steady Long Term Suicide Attempt

Chapter 10 I Got Way More Than Nine Lives

Chapter 11 The Final Descent

Chapter 12 Here Comes The According to Hoyle’s Miracle

Chapter 13 I Go Back For The Rest Of Them

Chapter 14 The Transformation

Chapter 15 The War for My Very Soul

Chapter 16 Self-Examination Sucks

Chapter 17 These are a Few of My Favorite Things

Chapter 18 Mine Eyes Have Seen the Glory

Chapter 19 So, What Are You Waiting For?

Chapter 20 My New Life


Chapter 1

Me and Pain, We’re Real Tight

Have you ever had pain? Of course, you have. Sucked, right? It doesn’t matter what type of pain it is, physical pain, emotional pain, or spiritual pain, being in pain sucks. Do you want to know what’s worse than being in pain? Being in a lot of pain. Do you want to know what’s even worse than that? Living a life filled with pain. I’m talking about knowing different types of pain so well, that it stops being an interrupter of your life and becomes a mainstay. It stops doing a cameo in the movie of your life, but it becomes a lead actor. It stops being a once-in-a-while stranger, and through intimate familiarity, it becomes more like a friend.

Pain was my friend. But until I hit rock bottom, really, really hard, I didn’t realize that pain was my only friend.

It wasn’t always that way for this young Irish American boy with a fresh face and at one point, a lean silhouette. I had promise, whatever that is. I had a glow, an unmistakable shimmer that left an amazing first impression. Unfortunately, life requires those pesky second and third impressions too; I was lousy at those.

Consider this a warning: Pain is a very bad friend, trust me when I tell you not to get too close. He is way too self-absorbed and inconsiderate. Like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, he infiltrates and captivates with fake affection only to systematically tear you apart. Pain laughs out loud when he makes you cry. You keep hoping he’ll change. You give and give and give and all pain does is take. My rather complicated relationship with pain was an unholy alliance, born under suspicious circumstances and fashioned by a lack of agility, horrific gluttony, and extreme carelessness. No one should actively nurture a friendship with pain. I did so only semi-consciously.

Pain has a strong, firm grip and an unquenchable thirst for three of your more distasteful bodily fluids; your blood, sweat, and tears. I often wonder what my formative years would have been like without constant, kill me now, pain. Could I have even sustained a regular, old-fashioned life? Is looking at the road less traveled anything more than a colossal waste of time? No, really, I’m asking. Are there any Frost fans out there?

I’ve always been told that your destiny is what it is; there is no sense in whining about it or day-dreaming it away. But there I was, staring at the road not traveled, on a daily basis while whining and daydreaming at the same time. Pain can brainwash you, bamboozle you, and show you a warped sense of phony warmth simultaneously, like a wicked game of Three Card Monty.

All I ever wanted was a normal, carefree, even mundane life. Maybe you’ve been lucky enough to know the kind of life I speak of; a full life with fun and smiles while running through a meadow or something. Pain would have come swooping along to clothesline me and knock me flat on my butt if it ever caught me frolicking through a meadow. Pain never stops. Pain never gives in and rarely loses.

What did I ever see in pain? Come to think of it, what did pain see in me? How did we become so close? Why can’t I stop asking questions that have no actual answers? Because I’m crazy that’s why, but it’s OK, don’t be afraid, it’s the good kind. Can I simply go, “Look over there!” and pain will be momentarily distracted, and I can make a break for it? If only wishing made it so.

Pain’s been lurking in the shadows for far too long in my life. He is a relentless stalker. Remember when your little brother used to follow behind you and your friends when you were young and how he wanted desperately to hang out with the bigger kids? That’s how pain stalked me. I’m not kidding when I tell you pain has been a life-long friend. In the book that would be my life, pain has too many entries in the index. If you sift through the picture album of my life, you’ll find pain, photobombing me over and over again.

Pain, The Early Years

As a kid, I had horrible gastritis that caused great pain. I remember once being doubled over in sheer agony for hours and my father having to carry me into the doctor’s office. I was already bigger than him, and I was only 12. Almost anything I ate caused the gastric distress. I lived on antacids for way too long and that too caused even more pain. It was a vicious cycle. Truth be told, I am a wimp. An ingrown toenail could put me into a coma. Pain preys on that kind of weakness.

"Truth be told, I’m a wimp. An ingrown toenail could put me in a coma."

In the tenth grade, I was playing CYO basketball, and we had a pretty good team. In a very close game that determined our playoff fate, I made a bad pass, and it was stolen, sending the other team off to the races for an easy bucket. I hustled back as fast as I could, determined to correct my mistake. As the guy ascended towards what he thought was an easy lay-up, I jumped as far as I could, completely across his body and got just a little piece of the ball. I went tumbling and my knee buckled as I landed. People sitting there watching said they heard the pop from across the gym. Adding insult to injury, I was called for a foul on the play.

I had to be carried off the court and taken to the hospital. My knee was pounding, and it hurt like mad. X-Rays showed the cartilage was damaged and they placed a cast on my left leg from stem to stern. For the next 8 weeks, I hated life. I couldn’t move, couldn’t stop the pain; and oh, the itching! Worst yet, I let my team down. We lost two games the next day and were eliminated. I was finally getting decent at basketball, and when they really needed me, I couldn’t help my team. I was our point guard, and our best player and, because of my absence, a low post scorer had to play my position. We got blown out in the first game and lost by one point in the second game. Damn you, Pain!

The whole team came to my house afterward to check on me and deliver the bad news. My knee instantly felt even worse, and Pain loved every minute of that. Pain is a spiteful dude, filled with horrible desires meant to destroy and dismantle. It’s some 30 odd years later, and my knee is still not right.

The next basketball season, I barely played winter ball because my knee was throbbing continually. In summer league, I was feeling good again, and I began to play even better than I did the year before. I was finally not completely terrible at sports. I was actually scoring points and playing aggressively. Ten years into athletics and finally, I’m not a bench warmer. Best summer of my life by far!

…Until that fateful night.

We were winning big early on, and I was feeling it. I grabbed a rebound and took off with it, not at all listening to my coach. Off I went fast break style, up the court, high-stepping and showing off. A kid trying to make a steal hit me from behind and I literally took off; I landed right at center court. It was anything but acrobatic.

At the last second, I lifted my arms up to take the brunt of the fall or I would have landed face first. I am way too pretty for that, (LOL) so I protected my face, my number one asset, and got my arms out. First contact with the asphalt was achieved by my elbows. The right one shattered into three pieces; the left one broke in half. Yes, you heard me right. I had broken both of my elbows at the same time.

They got me off the court, and the coach wiped the blood off both my elbows. Once he had done that to his satisfaction, he sent me back to the scorer’s table to check back into the game. I was shaking uncontrollably, but he didn’t care, he just wanted to win the game. At the next whistle, I checked back into the game, and it began again. I ran back on defense even though there was no way I could put my hands up to defend anyone. At this point, the man who ran the league and my mother both ran on to the court while the action was taking place, almost killing themselves in the process. Nine big bodies were moving at full speed, and they risked their own necks to get me out of there.

While they were screaming at my coach the pain was killing me, so I fell down and briefly passed out. Five people picked me up and put me in my mother’s station wagon. We ran every red light until we got to the hospital. There, we had another problem. The five people didn’t come with us. I was sitting in the middle of the back seat and since my arms didn’t work, I couldn’t lift myself out of the car. My mother frantically went inside and got five new people. They got in the back seat, but by then, my arms were dangling, and every attempt to move me brought me excruciating pain. They had to take me one small, synchronized lift at a time, each time I screamed out in pain, and it took nearly a half an hour to get me out of the car. I thought I was going to die it hurt that much. At this point, Pain was just trying too hard to be my friend.

They got me inside, did x-rays and then a doctor came in looking perplexed. “What am I going to do with you?” he said to me. “I can’t cast both elbows completely; you wouldn’t be able to wipe your own butt. I gotta invent something, give me an hour.” Meanwhile, I was in full tilt agony. He came back 90 minutes later and said, “Ok, here’s what we are going to do. The one broke in three places; we’ll cast that one up. The other one, we’ll put a few layers of stuff around it and an ace bandage, and we’ll hope for the best.”

I was up all night in pain and begged my mother to kill me. It didn’t get any better for two weeks. Then, I spent the rest of my summer with the bad arm placed on top of the worst arm and couldn’t move. That’s when you find out who really loves you.

I had to be bathed like an infant. Someone had to come into the bathroom with me to help me take down my pants. If I had to do a number two, three grown people had to slowly get me into position. I did my own wiping, I had to reach all the way around, and man did that hurt. Then, I’d have to shout out for the three people to come back into the bathroom and lift me out of there and remember, they cannot just take my hands and pull me up. They had to get underneath me and push. I weighed about 220 pounds at this point; which was pretty close to my birth weight, by the way. My mother still walks with a limp.

Only my mom, dad, and neighbor would help with pooping, which meant I couldn’t poop during the day because they were at work. So, that meant no real eating during the day. My brothers would help with peeing, reluctantly, with their eyes closed and they hated every minute of it. Who could blame them?

I couldn’t even scratch an itch on my face!

Because of this ordeal, all these years later I still have toothpicks for arms. It looks really weird. I have a big wide body and skinny, sad looking arms. Pain causes permanent damage without even trying hard.

This Just Keeps Getting Worse

Then there was the time when I was 23. I had awful stomach pains; I thought it was the gastritis, so I just waited it out. It lasted for days and eventually, I was throwing up uncontrollably. I was rushed to the hospital, and they operated just in time. I was told later that my appendix would have burst within twenty minutes. After a few days in the hospital, they sent me home. The next night, the pain returned, it was far worse than the original pain and kept me up all night. The next day, my girlfriend drove me to the hospital because I couldn’t take it anymore. In the ER, the doctor told us it was a massive infection and that he’d have to operate immediately, like, there, in the emergency room! To make matters worse, because I had a 104-degree fever he told me it would be too dangerous to administer any anesthesia.

As I watched in horror, he proceeded to reopen my incision (which was more than a foot long) with what looked like giant shearing scissors. Each tear into my flesh caused me to scream louder. Then, he peeled me back like a harpooned whale and began to pull a river of thick yellow bile out of me. Three people were now helping him rapidly remove this disgusting stuff from my body while it took all I had to not writhe from the pain. They had looks of panic on their faces as they pulled that hideous junk out of me. It took a really long time too. There was so much of it. After that, he sewed me closed again, without so much as an aspirin. I still have a giant hideous scar to show for it: my very own permanent badge of courage.

An hour later, they told me they were going to discharge me. I said, “Hey wait a minute, you’re not going to keep me here after that disaster?” They said, no, go home and try to get some rest. Don’t you love it when they throw the word ‘try’ in there? I was in so much pain after that; I didn’t sleep for a week.

Maybe you thought I was messing with you when I said pain was my life-long friend. My story is just getting started. All of this habitual suffering in my youth was just one big warm-up act for what was to come. You better buckle up; the ride gets rough from here.

Chapter 2

The ‘Say Hey Kid’, Dollar Bill, and Me

At 2:35 in the morning on the snowy night of February 6th, 1965, in Far Rockaway, New York, I became the eldest of four children to John and Elaine O’Shea. Dad was a New York City policeman, who transferred after three years to the fire department. He was the oldest of four kids and the son of an Irish immigrant. They were dirt poor, and his mother died when he was just eleven years old. My mother was also the oldest in her family of five. Her dad was a small but extremely strong man, who moved furniture. I once watched him carry a refrigerator over his shoulder a really long way all by himself.

My parents fell in love and by doing the math, I am pretty sure I was conceived on their honeymoon. They did their level best to be good parents and good people, and we grew up around a large, close-knit extended family. Aunts, uncles, and cousins were a huge part of our lives. We had all the essentials for a good life. Norman Rockwell would have wanted to paint us.

My dad had a tough job; he flung himself into burning buildings in the kind of rough neighborhoods where the locals would throw batteries and glass bottles at the firemen who were trying to save their lives. He got hurt a lot. Once, as a very young boy, I remember him coming home after chemicals leaked into his boot and carved a small hole in his lower leg. He was in really bad shape for a while after that but he eventually recovered. He was always worn out and tired. He often walked funny because one or more body parts were hurting. My mother was always worried. Not just because he always looked tired and walked funny but mostly because a phone call in the middle of the night would have meant that a roof had collapsed and that my father was dead. We all lived with that all-consuming fear his entire career. I commend and deeply admire all civil servants; we don’t come close to thanking them nearly enough.

He loved the adrenaline rush of diving into those burning buildings with reckless abandon, and he really liked saving people’s lives, but it was a tough way to live. He was ridiculously underpaid for the risks he took on a routine basis. Money was tight, and he always had to find some kind of second job. He drove a cab, worked moving furniture with my grandfather, and did anything else he could to make extra money just so I could have a first baseman’s mitt, or my sister could have a dollhouse. He spent 30 years in the Coast Guard reserves for us. He was a Chief Petty Officer by the end, climbing the ranks from an enlisted man who started out washing dishes. I still want to salute when I say that.

My mom and dad did without on a daily basis so that we could have a good life. Mom never pampered herself or splurged on stuff just for her. Luckily, she is beautiful, so she didn’t need to. She devoted all of her time and energy to her family. There was no me time for her, ever. She was happy making us happy. She juggled quite a lot and used her instincts and intelligence to keep lots of plates spinning effectively all at the same time. She is so strong in her faith. She instilled that in all of us. We knew Christ from birth because of her. I stand firm today in my relationship with my Savior because she never gave up on laying down a firm foundation of faith for me. Thank you, Mommy!

My dad had an awesome coin collection with some very interesting pieces in it. He’d break it out from time to time to show people, and he got all of us into collecting as well. Then, just like that, he stopped showcasing it. I didn’t even notice. I was too self-absorbed and too busy being a kid. When I was like 20 years old, my mother finally told me that he had to sell that coin collection so they could pay the bills; not even for a vacation or something cool. He lost his beloved coin collection to keep the lights on. Ouch! The moral of the story is that he never complained, never resented us for it and never said a word about having to give up something that gave him such pleasure. John and Elaine O’Shea are the kind of people you can learn an awful lot from if you’re even remotely willing. I remain eternally blessed!

I grew up tall and quickly. I was peculiarly mature for my age, more than able to stand my ground in a conversation with adults when I was 5. I could recite things little kids shouldn’t be able to recite, and I knew more about The New York Mets than my father and uncles combined. Sometimes, they liked that and showed it off to friends and neighbors. From the time I could remember, I was always a showman.

"From the time I remember, I was always a showman."

I excelled in grammar school. All A’s every semester, except a run of B’s in English in the fourth grade because of poor penmanship, which I still have to this day. In a placement test, I ranked in the upper one percentile of the whole country. My father proudly told everyone we knew or ever encountered that fact to the point where I was perpetually embarrassed. His pride became my anguish. This is when the whole ‘I was going to become a doctor’ stuff started. Everybody bought in and ran with it.

No one bothered to ask the fourth grader if he, in fact, wanted to be a doctor. I faint at the site of blood; I hate needles and don’t even get me started on bowel movements, so being a doctor was out of the question. Yet a collective mass of hovering people attempted to hammer this preposterous concept through my thick skull. I wanted to be what every baseball-loving young boy yearned to be, a center-fielder.

My American Past time

My earliest refuge was baseball. The symmetry of the game, the pace and the idea that each day you had a chance, you got to start over, really appealed to me. I became a Met’s fan because I loved Tom Seaver and Willie Mays. They didn’t even seem like human beings to me. They were like regal robots, perfect in every way. Years later, I learned that Tom Seaver was kind of a snob, and Willie Mays always had money troubles. That was hard to learn about your lifelong heroes.

From the very first game, we ever went to I was hooked. It was 1972, The New York Mets against the Cincinnati Reds. My grandfather on my mother’s side, TJ, had been in the army with the third base coach for the Reds, so we got free tickets. The moment we entered Shea Stadium, my life was forever altered. It was beyond sensory overload for a 7-year-old kid walking up that tunnel and out towards the field for the very first time. The sights, sounds, tastes, and smells were so intoxicating that I was truly mesmerized.

On the field for my very first game were several of baseball’s all-time legends, Willie Mays, Pete Rose, Joe Morgan and Johnny Bench. Yogi Berra was the Mets manager. Another Hall of Famer, Tom Seaver was in the dugout; it was not his night to pitch. It was, however, Willie’s first game as a Met. He had been traded over to the Mets the day before from the San Francisco Giants so he could return to New York, where his career began, to start a farewell tour since his career was winding down. He was 41, with bad legs, and was nearly finished. He was holding on longer than he should have because he needed the money. I didn’t know that however, and that night I wouldn’t have believed you if you had told me. I was thrilled to watch my idol in action. I sometimes wish I was born two decades earlier so I could have seen the greatest baseball player ever in his prime. Mays went on to hit the game-winning home run in the Mets 1 – 0 victory. I was hooked forever on America’s Pastime.

Much of my adolescent formation occurred at the Mets games. My dad used to round up all the neighborhood kids, and we would pile into the station wagon and head off to Shea Stadium. Back then, the Mets were mostly a bad team that nobody was willing to pay to see, so he’d flash his badge, and they’d let us all in for free. It was always a common thread between my dad and me. When I was 18, and we disagreed about everything, we could always talk about baseball. If someone walked by and heard us arguing, they would run into the room and just say, “how about those Mets” and run away, knowing it would get us to change course and stop yelling. No matter what, we always had baseball.

Dollar Bill Bradley

My dad used sports to teach me lessons about life. I wanted to be a good athlete, but I was not coordinated or tough enough. I played basketball on a very good team and struggled to get into the game. When I was about 12 years old. my dad told me all about Bill Bradley. Bradley was an All-American at Princeton, a Rhodes Scholar and for a decade played for the New York Knicks. He won two championships with the Knicks, became a US Senator out of New Jersey and ran for President. His best line during his presidential campaign occurred after a reporter asked him this question. “The Electoral College is outdated, how do you think we should determine who the next president should be?” Bradley replied, “How ‘bout jump shots from the top of the key?”

Dollar Bill Bradley was slow, dumpy looking and not at all athletic, yet he was an All-American in college and a starter on two championship teams, using his brains to do it all. Coaches and players make out a detailed scouting report on their opponents. Bradley made one out on his teammates. He studied each of them and knew all of their tendencies and weaknesses. If he was running in the middle of a fast break, he knew who was behind him by the distinct sound of their breath. He found his way to fit in and to excel in a world that was way over his head physically. My dad taught me to play this way and I actually improved enough to be a serviceable player. I took this approach into life many times as well. Scout your teammates, learn everything about them and then act accordingly. It’s so simple, it’s brilliant.

For an Irish kid growing up in New York, I was living the life. Watching as many Met’s games as I could, running around the city blocks with others like a pack of little Irish wolves, and for all intents and purposes, my life started out great.

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