Quotes I like:

“Not all those who wander are lost.” -- J.R.R. Tolkien

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The All American Sport


Ah, spring and young men's thoughts turn to ........ well if you're sports minded, baseball. Or in the case of my grandson, T-ball. Now, never having grown up with brothers and only having given birth to a daughter, my knowledge of baseball is somewhat limited.   My grandson is in T-ball and I got to watch him practice recently.  I learned that T-ball consists of young children--boys and girls-- as now girls are allowed to play as well, who hit the ball off a "T" rather than having a ball thrown at them. Based on the ages of these kids (4, 5, 6, 7), some might cry if a ball were actually thrown at them. Several kids did cry at different points during the practice and I was reminded of "A League of their Own" where Tom Hank's character advises "there's no crying in baseball". Apparently, these kids haven't seen the film.

The kids started out with throwing practice consisting of one kid tossing a ball in the general direction of another kid who watched it go by and then ran, or walked, to pick it up and toss it back to the other kid who also ran, or walked to go get it. No one actually caught a ball.

This was followed by a practice game where some kids were assigned to play infield, outfield, etc and some kids would bat.  I was perplexed when one kid was assigned the role of pitcher.  I couldn't figure out what the pitcher did since the ball was batted from the "T", but I soon found out as the first kid came up to bat.  The kid was given instructions on how to the hold the bat and where to stand.  The pitcher then pretended to throw a ball and the batter swung at the ball on the T.  It was easy to determine which kid was which since this was practice and no one had uniforms on, otherwise I'd have to go by their jersey number.  Instead I watched "Green Shirt", "Pink Shirt", "Orange Shirt" and the like.  So to help you understand the game I watched, here is a little play by play:

Ok, first batter up.  It's Green Shirt.  Green Shirt steps up to the plate and takes a stance.  The pitcher tosses the pretend throw and Green Shirt swings and hits the T knocking it over.  The coach steps in to re-set the T and its a do over folks.  The pitcher winds up and tosses a pretend pitch straight to Green Shirt who manages to hit the ball from the T in a straight drive that goes right through the pitcher's legs.  The infield scrambles in an attempt to catch the ball but the short stop misses it as he has stopped to pick his nose.  Green Shirt stands at home plate and seems confused as to what to do.  The Coach steps in and tells him to run to first base.  Green Shirt starts ambling toward first but stops to talk to the nose picker on the way.  Ok, one man on and next batter is up.  It is Pink Shirt, a girl, who has also worn a skirt to practice. She must think she plays for the Racine Peaches.  Anyway there's a new pitcher on the mound whose rubbery, noodle arm wobbles a pretend pitch to Peaches who swings and misses and continues to swing and miss for several more tries until she manages to knock the ball off the the T and run to first where Green Shirt is standing.  Everyone yells at him to run to second base and he takes a leisurely stroll over there.  Two on base and its Orange Shirt up to bat, oh oh, hold on he has to go back for his batting helmet.  Ok, properly suited up Orange Shirt steps up to bat and, holy cow! he hits a line drive straight toward third base. Green Shirt is walking on his way there and the third baseman  misses catching the ball as he is busy looking straight up in the air. The ball continues into the outfield and rolls to a stop near the outfielder who is sitting in the grass picking weeds.  Everyone is screaming at Green Shirt to run home and he takes off toward the spectators, specifically his mom and dad. And that's the game folks!

Honestly, it was probably the most fun I have had watching a baseball game, ever!

Oh, someone asked me how my grandson did in the game. Well, let's just say that I watched as he stood on third base with his batting helmet held over his face while he turned in circles trying to get dizzy.  He later decided to use his glove as a hat.  He will learn.......I hope.

And speaking of constricting undergarments .....


Well, after all that talk about Spanx, I found that I needed to go shopping for another contraption we women pour ourselves into---bras.

I have decided that I could easily become a multi-millionaire if I could design a bra that was both comfortable and supportive.  Sort of like an old husband.

Instead what I usually find are bras that are too tight, don't fit right, allow 'the girls' to droop too much, or push them up under my chin.

I also found out that I am waaaay behind the curve in the boobage department as it seems that all bras now are designed for women whose cup runneth over.  In other words I think all bras are now made for my sisters full of silicone and not for natural old me.  And speaking of old, I now have to contend with a whole new array of disasters like over hanging back fat and armpit creep where the space just in front of my armpit manages to bulge over my bra strap.

Oh, how I long for the prepubescent days when young girls are given training bras and told what to expect as they mature into womanhood.  Unfortunately, no one does this on the opposite of life so we could know what to expect as we age into dowager status.

So in my quest for proper support, I  proceeded with trepidation into the underwear department in an attempt to find a bra equivalent to the perfect man, something we all know doesn't exist. I did manage to take two home (bras, not men) and as I sit here typing this can report that the straps of one of them are digging into the soft flesh at the front of my underarms along with the stay on the side of the bra directly under the armpit which is digging into my side.  The 'girls' are so high up I could easily do the lipstick trick done by Molly Ringwald in "The Breakfast Club" film. (if you haven't seen it, go look it up on youtube).

On the other, um, er, hand, the second bra offers so little support that my 'girls' can now be called chesticles since they hang so low.  Fortunately, I am not heavily endowed and they can only reach so far south.   

I had high hopes of achieving bra wonderfullness (not wonder bra -they are no wonder believe me)  only to have those hopes dashed on the shore of disappointment once again.

I'd consider just giving up and going bra-less but those days are long gone. Sigh. The hunt continues.

Oh, and I will gladly fork over one of the newly purchased torture devices to anyone who can come up with the funniest caption to the photo above.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Pass the nasal spray and tissues, I got the flu

I can totally relate to this little girl and how she is feeling.  I pretty much feel the same way.  I want to hold my head and cry.  I got the flu. I refuse to say that I 'caught' the flu as the word 'caught' seems to be an active verb indicating that the person performing the act of catching is doing something with intent and, believe me, I had no intention of coming down with this nasty, horrible illness. People 'catch' fish --they mean to do it.  People 'catch' fly balls--again with INTENT.

I was merrily minding my own business, driving from sunny Florida to cold, snowy Maryland and WHAM! the flu snuck up on me and hit me with a 2 X 4.  Of course perhaps I should have rethought that drive north in winter, but honestly, I probably already had the flu bug before I left the warmer climes.  One day I was fine and the next I was dying, at least it felt like it.  By Super Bowl eve, I was running a fever, coughing, aching, and miserable.  I wanted to lay on the floor, cry and whine. My head hurt so badly I gave serious thought to cutting it off. But then, in the midst of the snowfall and my pain,  I heard that there was a miracle drug available that could help curb the flu symptoms. This amazing stuff is called "Tamiflu" but you need a prescription to get it.  Off I went in search of an urgent care clinic which was open past 5:00 PM. I'm not sure why 'urgent' care centers seem to think that urgency stops at 5:00, but many of them were closed.

I did find one open and there was almost no one waiting to be seen.  Truly miracles do occur! In less than an hour I had seen "Dr. Dan" as he was called, given wonder drugs and on my way back home. That the cost of this 'miracle' amounted to something equal to a monthly car payment, for a luxury car, seemed a dim concern. Hope was on its way in the form of a capsule!!

I got home and took the pill. And it came to pass that on the First Sunday in the month of February, on the day wherein all mankind reverently gazes at two sports teams as they chase an oblong ball around an elliptical arena, THE PILL WORKED.  I actually began to feel better!  I was able to join the multitude as they sang praises and heaped glory upon bird-men of Baltimore; and it was good and they were victorious in their quest.

I also swore that I did not wish to live through the flu again; I am a most impatient patient.  The doctor had inquired, while he was examining me at the clinic, whether I had received a flu shot.  I responded that I had not and asked whether he thought it would have made a difference.  In precise medicals terms he told me "50/50", half the flu cases he had seen had received an immunization and half had not. In even more exact medical terminology he explained that it was "a crap shoot".  That cinched my plan to avoid flu shots altogether in the future.  As an alternate plan and, given the state of the flu bugs this year, I have decided that upon venturing out where I would come into contact with other humans, I will start wearing protective gear.  A gas mask should work well. I like this one:

It reminds me of the people on the planet "Tatooine" from Star Wars.  I will wear it and pretend I am from that planet, maybe they don't have the flu there.