Class acts all around

Mariano Rivera, the long-time lights-out Yankee closer is retiring this year.   The sport agreed to retire Jackie Robinson’s number 42 from all teams, and Rivera is appropriately the last player to have it.  I’m properly skeptical of sports journalism regarding the personalities of players, having read Ring Lardner’s Champion in youth (for example) but as far as I can tell what you hear about Rivera is what you get, a real gentleman on and off the field, awesomely good at what he does, confident in his skills and not a tidge arrogant or jerky. Class act all the way.

Probably no recent ballplayer has administered more heartbreak and frustration to the Red Sox (maybe Dennis Eckersley). Before tonight’s game, the last between the rivals for the season, the Sox put on a ‘time’ for Rivera with gifts, speeches, and applause.  Another class act, what sports is supposed to be about but too often lacks.  Thanks, Mo, for the great ball, and thanks, Sox, for saying goodbye so graciously.


Author: Michael O'Hare

Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley, Michael O'Hare was raised in New York City and trained at Harvard as an architect and structural engineer. Diverted from an honest career designing buildings by the offer of a job in which he could think about anything he wanted to and spend his time with very smart and curious young people, he fell among economists and such like, and continues to benefit from their generosity with on-the-job social science training. He has followed the process and principles of design into "nonphysical environments" such as production processes in organizations, regulation, and information management and published a variety of research in environmental policy, government policy towards the arts, and management, with special interests in energy, facility siting, information and perceptions in public choice and work environments, and policy design. His current research is focused on transportation biofuels and their effects on global land use, food security, and international trade; regulatory policy in the face of scientific uncertainty; and, after a three-decade hiatus, on NIMBY conflicts afflicting high speed rail right-of-way and nuclear waste disposal sites. He is also a regular writer on pedagogy, especially teaching in professional education, and co-edited the "Curriculum and Case Notes" section of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management. Between faculty appointments at the MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning and the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, he was director of policy analysis at the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. He has had visiting appointments at Università Bocconi in Milan and the National University of Singapore and teaches regularly in the Goldman School's executive (mid-career) programs. At GSPP, O'Hare has taught a studio course in Program and Policy Design, Arts and Cultural Policy, Public Management, the pedagogy course for graduate student instructors, Quantitative Methods, Environmental Policy, and the introduction to public policy for its undergraduate minor, which he supervises. Generally, he considers himself the school's resident expert in any subject in which there is no such thing as real expertise (a recent project concerned the governance and design of California county fairs), but is secure in the distinction of being the only faculty member with a metal lathe in his basement and a 4×5 Ebony view camera. At the moment, he would rather be making something with his hands than writing this blurb.

2 thoughts on “Class acts all around”

  1. Agree all around, Mike. I was at Fenway last night for the tribute (and the subsequent shellacking). Folks seemed to mean it about Rivera. And the crowd balanced out the unnatural act of cheering for a Yankee by doubling the intensity of the Five Minutes Hate for A-Rod both times he came to bat before slinking away with a boo-boo.

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