The Barry Bonds saga has become the sort of serial debacle that forces you to choose a favorite moment. There's race, sex, drugs, fame, money, family and Felipe Alou as everybody's multilingual grandfather. There are opinions and defenses and tears -- more tears than you'd expect, really -- but more than anything, there are priceless slices of life that touch you somewhere deep.
Like the picnic-table news conference last spring when Bonds told the ESPN cameraman to make sure he got his poor son in the picture.
Like the time he told the grand jury his response when trainer Greg Anderson told him to put all these unusual substances in his body was to comply and say, "Whatever."
But a personal favorite happened this past weekend in Los Angeles. Bonds made an out in Friday night's game against the Dodgers, and the camera followed him on the slow walk from first base to the dugout.
If you've watched a Giants game, you've undoubtedly noticed it's no longer a Giants game. It's "Bonds on Bonds" over the course of nine innings, with the camera following the man's every movement and constant reminders of when the man himself will be coming to the plate.
So on this occasion, the camera followed him into the dugout, where he placed his helmet in the rack and started walking down the line to find a place to sit. This is riveting television, of course, like watching someone walk into the office, find a hook for his coat and plop down in the cubicle.
But here's where it gets interesting. Bonds kept walking, past all his teammates. He finally sat at the end of the bench, and the guy nearest him looked like a size 9 head atop a fourth-grade body.
The guy didn't pay any attention to Bonds, then Giants broadcaster Mike Krukow, almost apologetically, informed us that Bonds was sitting next to Rob Schneider, working as a bat boy for the game.
How good is that?
Rob Schneider, all 4-foot-4 of him, sitting there in a bat boy uniform, feet dangling above the floor, trying not to pay attention as Bonds fires several hundred sunflower seeds into and around his mouth as a means of showing his frustration after grounding out.
That's my moment, the moment the surreal met the ridiculous. It's enough to keep you tuning in.
This Week's List
• Despite the much-noted poster on his bedroom wall, apparently he didn't ask the question, "What would Che do?": Adam Morrison is turning pro.
• Just as all of us experts predicted back in March: Albert Pujols has reached a point where he has to hit a home run in four straight at-bats just to keep pace with Chris Shelton.
• And to think, up till now, Knicks fans just thought he was a carrier: Larry Brown is expected to miss the final two games of his team's season with acid reflux.
• All along it was just miscommunication -- Larry wanted him to play for him and he heard it wrong: Stephon Marbury, asked about Brown and the acid reflux, said, "I just spoke to coach, sent him my condolences, let him know that my family and I are praying for him."