Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Balls of Fire

Baseball! After half a century on earth, I, the artist and bookish writer/editor, finally got bitten by the baseball bug. It's largely because I was not competent enough to understand what was going on in Tyke's games, and now that he's outgrowing Tykedom he's deeply involved in travel ball, which forces me to be involved--we have to drive all over the state and I am stuck. So I had DH give me a crash course and I started watching the big leagues. And that's when the trouble started . . .

I was formerly a vague Yankees fan, only because that's the team Tyke liked. I just sided with him because he was my kid. But now, I've been watching the Yankees and the Red Sox. I live in a place that's between Yankees territory and Red Sox territory, and the loyalties around here are fierce and opinionated. People get downright confrontational. I always just thought, what the heck do I care?

It seems I'm rapidly going over to the Dark Side. The other night I caught myself recognizinig players not by their faces or what the announcers said, but by their NUMBERS. And I whoop and holler as if I'm in Fenway Park watching them pick it off the Green Monster. Help me. I'm officially a goner. And even worse, I've betrayed my Tyke, and he's disgusted with me.

In other news, I was listening to the announcers' banter, and collected a few phrases that gave me pause. As a newcomer to the game, rules, and terms, these gobsmacked me and I laughed myself off the sofa. No one else was here at the time to straighten me out and give me definitions--apparently these are things people say, but I didn't know what they meant.

  1. "That ball's got hair on it!" Whuuuttttt? That just sounded wrong to me.
  2. "It looked like a can of corn when he hit it." What the heck does he mean? Oh, I guess I can sort of see that in the pitch.
  3. "With that first piece of cheese, they're hackin'." Mouse bait.
  4. "You know I love gas." I don't even want to go there.
Now I have an even better reason to like baseball--listening to the jargon.

And, it ain't over till Big Papi says it's over!

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At 7/15/2009 2:28 PM, Blogger Nance said...

Oh, it's REAL EASY to be a "baseball fan" when you root for big winners like these two teams. Get back to me when you root for my two teams: The Cleveland Indians and the Chicago Cubs.

*Sigh.* ;-)

At 7/15/2009 3:08 PM, Blogger sputnik said...

Oh, yeah, Nance? You wanna GO? Because I used to take my two wriggly little kids to Wrigley Field and watch the Cubbies when I lived in Evanston. And apparently because that was back in the day when I had no mojo to give them, we cursed them, because it's all been downhill from there. I love the Cubbies. I'm just exploring.

At 7/16/2009 10:12 AM, Blogger Nance said...

Aaaah! A kindred spirit, then. Don't you miss Moises Alou? I am continually heartbroken watching the Cubbies without him! It never pays to get too attached to anyone in professional sports, I know, because as one of my son's friends once said, "You're basically rooting for laundry," but I can't help it!


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