Play Ball!


A favorite pastime that the average American can relate to is good ‘ole baseball.

When I think of baseball these thoughts come into my mind: the smell of hotdogs and cotton candy, the crisp, green striped grassy fields, phrases like  “Shake it off!” and “He wanted that!”,  guys in tight uniforms, and people–lots of different sorts of people.

Are you with me?

Just recently I had the pleasure of going to a Brave’s game in Atlanta and had forgotten just how much fun actually going to the game can be.

So, the experience starts out pretty normal.

I’m trying to find my seat (as if finding the matching number to what’s on my ticket is some sort of abstract concept that only some sort of wizard can figure out), and OF COURSE someone’s sitting in my seat.

Well, that whole fiasco finally gets ironed out (Shew!), but now I find myself sitting with the most peculiar family.

When I say peculiar, I mean strange.

family-photos bears

Well….not exactly.

BUT, they were, indeed, off.

My closest neighbor was a very, very tall, young man who was full-figured (by full-figured I mean, he became part of my seat and at some point I just conceded and sat on/leaned against a good portion of his body because I was tired of hovering over the outer fourth corner of my chair).

Needless to say, we got to know each other.

Well, during this “getting to know you” portion of our outing, I found out that he doesn’t like to chew with his mouth closed, he loves to yell things at high decibels, and he is very fond of dancing (like nobody’s watching).

While I was staring at his elbow and how large and 3D like it seemed (because it was an inch–at best– from my nose a good portion of the game), and wondering if any of the surrounding baseball fans sensed my discomfort, I realized that I, sort of, really liked this sweet, young man.

Call it crazy, or letting go of inner issues (who knows), but I finally let my guard down enough to actually enjoy watching this fellow full-out enjoy what was going on in his world with whole-hearted abandonment.

In between the many, many high fives he demanded, discussing his thinning hair situation, and how he couldn’t believe he hadn’t yet been featured on the Jumbotron screen, I realized that maybe I should be a little freer.

After all, who’s having all the fun here?

That started an odd train of thought– maybe I’m the peculiar one. Who doesn’t want to be happy and enjoy life?

So, as I watched my new friend take pictures of his tiny, plastic baseball cap bowl full of Dipping Dots followed by a high-five (from me this time),  I realized that I am definitely the one that’s missing out here.

Well, in the end, I relaxed, smiled, laughed, cheered, and met some pretty cool people like Freddy the usher, the tryin’ to be cool for some pretty girls teen boys, and my sweet seat-mate, Antwon.

Lighten up, people! Have fun, enjoy life the way it was meant to be enjoyed, and laugh as much as possible.

Who’s peculiar now???

About Amy Rafferty Slagle

I am a middle school teacher juggling career, husband (ooh la la), and twin tomboys (good grief). I have a passion for writing and crave laughter just about as much as frozen yogurt. This is my attempt at sharing the madness of my world, my mind, and my humor. View all posts by Amy Rafferty Slagle

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