When we were in AAA, we only hit the ball one time. We remember it vividly – it was a ground ball that went hopping down the third baseline. The shock of the connection that ran from the bat through our arm is still vibrating in our minds. We were so shocked when it happened that we just watched it roll away, rather than running to first base. By the time we came to our senses and began to move (for sure our father was hopping up and down and hollering at us to get a move on – luckily most of our memories are silent) it was too late. We were tagged out at first.
See, we were so bad at baseball that we consistently hit the tee rather than the ball in Tee-Ball. We were fast, sure, but we had to bank on pitches thrown out of the strike zone for us to get on base. The only things we liked about the sport were the stirrup pants. Of course, our father forced us to play, so we continued to do so for years (let’s be clear – we’re not mad at dad for making us play sports. We just needed to figure out the ones that we were good at – i.e. ones that did not involve balls).
We were so bad at Little League that we began to try to distract ourselves. Since we were completely uncoordinated, they always put us in center or right field. Out there, among the grass and dandelions (oh the dandelions!) we could pretend we were in a field in the middle of the woods – perhaps in the field from the beginning of “The Sound of Music!” We’d spin around, we’d dance, we’d sing. There are even home videos of those damning, damning experimentations. In those moments, we decided that we’d rather frolic than compete.
Poor dad. Even though he never said anything into the microphone, you can practically hear his thoughts as he zooms in on us way out there, skipping merrily in a circle.
“Damn,” he probably thought. “My son is GAY.”