Sunday June 21st, 2009

The exercise:

Happy Father's Day all. I know I just wrote about my Dad yesterday but he's a pretty special guy, so he gets two days in a row.

Today's prompt: summer time with Dad.

Mine:

I don't remember exactly when or why I became totally obsessed with baseball during my childhood. Looking back now it seems like I always had a baseball glove in one hand, a baseball bat in the other, and... jeez, how did I carry the baseball? In the glove, I hope. Anyway.

We had a massive field out behind our house in Ontario and I could not possibly tell you how many times I dragged Dad out there. I'd give him the bat and ball and go racing out into the field. He'd toss it up and hit fly ball after fly ball to me as I raced left and right, backward and forward to catch them.

Always an encouraging word when I missed it. Always heartfelt praise when I snagged a tough one. So many hot summer afternoons were spent out there, and just as many summer evenings. Until the sky grew too dark to spot the ball in the sky as it hurtled down towards me. Then only a couple more and I'd agree to go back in.

Dad was a ridiculously good sport about it. I'm sure he had other things that needed to be done but I honestly can't remember him ever saying no. I'm sure he must have, but if he did the incredible number of times he agreed to come play ball with me make those one or two, "Not today Marc"'s that I have forgotten seem... well, quite forgettable.

So thanks Dad for always being so willing to step up to the plate for me. I bet you would have made a great ball player if you had ever pursued it. But I know you make a great Dad.

4 Comments:

Greg said...

Wow, your dad sounds very cool! How did you get from baseball to frisbee then? I can see the catching element matches, but they're still quite different games.

summer time with Dad

It's always cold on the east side of the lake, something about the geography of the area pushes the wind this way. It's usually raining too, but today it's just overcast.
Dad is disappointed. He likes it when it's raining, when the wind is howling up a gale and lashing the trees like a frenzied boat-master whipping the oarsmen. He's trying not to show it, but his mouth has turned down at the corners and he's pulled the drawstrings of his hood tight.
'But it's summer,' I think to myself. 'Why does he want wind and rain and cold in the summer?'
It took me another twelve years to figure that out: he liked the elemental forces of nature. His day job took him to hot, placid places where you worried about not having enough water and sunstroke, and barely got enough of a breeze to ruffle your hair. Here at the lake he got all the stuff he missed for the rest of the year.
But right now, just as the first fat raindrop splashes on my uncovered head, his face is lighting up and he's beckoning me on, to the most exposed point by the lake. I'm going to get pneumonia if he keeps this up.

Marc said...

My dad would probably have a good laugh at being called very cool, but I think he is :)

Baseball to ultimate... probably happened at the end of high school. There were no local leagues to play ball in anymore and I got introduced to ulti in the last few years before graduation. And then having one of the largest ulti leagues in North America in Vancouver kind of sealed the deal.

I quite like yours - is that a true story? Either way, I love the idea of the father missing inclement weather.

Greg said...

Ah, it's not a true story I'm afraid, but the missing inclement weather is something I get. I'm much more of a cold, wet weather person than a sunshine person -- give me mountain climbing and moorland hiking over the beach any day!

It's strange how sports, that seem so ubiquitous, can be so hard to take part in when you live in the wrong area. Even something that's currently popular -- when I went looking for a kickboxing class a couple of years ago I thought there'd be plenty, because of the growing interest in MMA. Turns out they're still quite sparse on the ground :) Glad you found a sport you enjoy with good leagues though!

chad mckee said...

Tough teacher and Gentile Giants
Grey with wisdom and Eyes of a hawk
Voice of reason and Hearts of compassion
Worn hands and Achy feet from providing
Always tired but willing to go one more hour
A father knows his children are life's Greatest challenge and Reward; Equal to None