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Orioles baseball is an adventure into an unknown world, which can be explored only by those willing to take the risk

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Final - 8.3.2011 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
Baltimore Orioles 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 4 0
Kansas City Royals 1 2 0 0 0 0 3 0 X 6 11 1
WP: Luke Hochevar (8 - 8)
SV: Greg Holland (1)
LP: Jeremy Guthrie (5 - 15)

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One of the more interesting philosophical questions about modern art is that of the importance of artistic intent.  Many people look at a work by Mark Rothko or Jackson Pollack and think that their works could have been made by a child; the works lack the sort of technical supremacy possessed by old masters such as Botticelli or Vermeer that can inspire wonder in even the most indifferent viewer.  The pleasures of modern art are more cerebral and chilly; the interpretation of abstract shapes in a Kandinsky or the reinvention of ordinary objects by Duchamp.  By itself, the intellectual demands of modern art do not necessarily detract from the pleasure, but it does significantly blur the lines between what is and what isn't art.  Many people tend to solve this problem with the heuristic of artistic intent or even merely that of artistic appreciation - if it was meant to be displayed in an art gallery, or even if it merely is displayed in one, it is art.

In 1964, a previously unknown French artist named Pierre Brassau made his debut at the Gallerie Christinae in Götenberg, Sweden.  He garnered mainly positive reviews.  But it turned out that no such person as Pierre Brassau existed.  The paintings that had been so highly praised were actually the works of a four year old chimpanzee named Peter from a Swedish zoo, and the debut of Brassau was a hoax perpetrated by a Swedish journalist, out to see if critics and gallery enthusiasts could tell the difference between "genuine" modern art and the work of a primate.

As patrons of entertainment, we generally assume, however we feel about the performance of the entertainers, that they are trying to do their best.  We assume that Michael Bay is trying his hardest to make a good film, that Wilco wants to make a good album, that Jay Leno is genuinely doing his best to be funny.  And as Orioles fans, we assume that our team is trying to win games, that our front office is trying to assemble a good team, that our players are really doing all that they think they can to be as good at baseball as they can possibly be.  We question whether the decisions made by the manager are the ones that gave us the best possible chance to win, we question whether our front office signed the right players, whether our scouts have the talent to spot the most promising prospects.  But we take for granted that everyone involved wants to be successful, that our players want to be great players, that they are all doing the best that they can.

Yet the possibility that this is all a hoax is out there.