We started out the Okinawan Softball season with a loss. We were leading all the way until the 8th inning. We took the lead in the bottom, then gave up three runs in the top of the 9th. We didn’t score in our last at-bat and I ended the game by flying out the the left fielder. I subsequently threw my bat down in disgust. A good craftsman never blames his tools, and I’m certainly not blaming mine. But maybe it would be nice to get some new tools? Just saying. Anyway, Lynnette was kind enough to take a few pictures of the game. They’re pretty solid pictures of a pretty crappy performance.
I am still a mess at the plate. I hit a triple to dead center during my first at-bat and then went on to fly out or pop up in my remaining appearances. I’m under everything. I’m making a conscious effort to stay on top of the ball, too. This leads me to believe I am diving at the ball. But in looking over pictures Lynnette took, that doesn’t seem to be the case. Maybe I’m just making contact to early. I don’t know. I guess video is the next step. It’s a good thing Madison and Lynnette were at the field. This decreases the chances of my dropping an F-Nuke considerably. Believe me, I’m getting pretty close to F-Nuke territory. The WOPR is trying to figure out the launch codes. It’s got 4 characters locked in. When it gets all ten, it’ll launch the F-Nukes. In this metaphorical scenario, I guess Lynette is Matthew Broderick and Madison is the chimp from the 1987 version of Project X, not the one about kids throwing a party.
No, I wasn’t throwing out the dance moves to Thriller in the middle of the game. You see, what had happened was I set myself up to field a grounder which I estimated would bounce to me at about thigh level. But then it took huge back hop over my head. The best I could do was get my bare hand up. The ball glanced off my middle and ring fingers and continued into right center field. I have small hands with short fingers, and the likelihood of actually catching the ball in this situation was pretty slim. I was hoping, though, that I had hit the ball straight up into the air so that I could catch it and flip it (or scissor kick it) to Matty for a force out at second. I think about this kind of stuff ALL THE TIME. Well, maybe less so since I play softball less so, but every single time a runner is first, I start thinking of situations where I would be forced to dive or glove flip the ball to Matty, or catch the ball on a ricochet from the pitcher and have to make a throw on the run. It’s the only thing I’ve ever wanted to do with my life. You know how on The Real Housewives of ______________________, they do all of this stupid stuff in their free time and have the most ridiculous hobbies? It’s a function of their wealth: they have the freedom to do whatever they want. Well, if I had it to do all over again and I married the Poncho’s Solar heiress instead of Lynnette, all I would do is turn double plays with Matty. That’s it. I’d show up on The Real Housewives of Oahu and every time I’d walk into the room, they’d play this quirky music. “Where are you going?” my wife would ask. And I would say “I’m gonna go put a little work in.” Then a single camera man would accompany me in my Lexus while I sat in traffic on my way to pick up Matty. I would say insightful things like “Yeah, man, you know? Everyone dreams of getting rich so they can do whatever they want. Well, all I ever wanted to do was turn double plays. I coached Little League and high school baseball, but that’s not really what I wanted. Nah, I wanted to be the one doing glove flips and ****, you know what I mean? When I hired our butler, I made sure he could hit fungos.”
It wouldn’t be an official game unless I laid out for a ball I ultimately didn’t get to. I can’t remember the last time I made one of these plays. It’s become a trend. If I don’t get to one soon, I may as well stop diving. The reality of the situation is that diving is supposed to give you a 50/50 shot of making a play or keeping the ball on the infield. That’s not happening. I can see the ball zip past me on my way down. Not good.
Okay, but I did make one play today.
Favorite part of my day: Runner on 1st, no outs. Batter hits grounder to Matty, his throw takes me to my right, my throw to first is late as a result. Runner on 1st, one out. “Just throw it through me,” I said. “Yeah,” Matty said. A pitch or two later the batter hit a grounder right at Matty. He put a lot more on it, only it was headed over my head. This picture captures about all the athleticism I have left. I also love that you can see my gut peeking out from under my shirt. I caught the ball and held the bag for the force at second. I love the Okinawan Softball season. The sun comes out. I have a little color on the back of my neck, my legs, and left arm. Usually, they only catch florescent lighting. I get a nice sweat going. I passed out on the drive from my parents’ house to Target. I passed out on the ride from Target to our home. While I was at Target, I moved around like a zombie, using the cart to support my upper body weight. “Are you alright?” Lynnette asked. My had hat hair, I was still in uniform, and had just woken up from a short Aiea-to-Salt Lake nap. “Mawh? Oh, yeah. Just tired,” I said. I have one more load of laundry left as the sun sets on my weekend. One more week, then Spring Break. I can make it.