Monday, June 23, 2008

Play Ball!

Sunday, after writing most of the morning, I headed out to a nearby park to cheer on Hooper’s Heroes, the softball team made up of people from the law firm where I toil at a day job. They play in a law firm co-ed league. I go to almost every game. It’s fun, close to home, and gives me a nice break from the weekend writing grind.

Yesterday, as soon as I got there, I was greeted by three of the attorneys with: “Hey, Sue Ann, want to play?”

According to the rules, they must have so many attorneys on the field and so many women (attorneys or otherwise). It seems they were short some estrogen. Guess it didn’t matter that the big E came packaged in a 55 year old, 200++ lb body. It’s nice to know I’m still a girl where it counts – on the playing field.

Okay. Now the last time I played softball was about 8 years ago at a family barbecue. I did okay until I tripped running to first base and landed face first on the base, mangling my glasses. (But I was safe!) Before that, I played on a co-ed league sponsored by a tavern. By the way, before that means at least twenty-five years ago! Add to the mix that Los Angeles is experiencing a record heat wave, and you get the picture. It ain’t pretty and, thankfully, no one took photos.

Wearing work-out shorts and a tee-shirt, I was dressed to play, but on my feet were Crocs. Not the heavy, chunky kind, but the new flats. Hardly athletic foot gear. Still, next thing I knew, Hooper himself was pointing to me and telling the ump I was a paralegal with the firm and playing. Sign her up. As soon as I signed a waiver acknowledging that any injuries were my own dumb-ass fault, someone loaned me a glove.

I started out in right field, where I prayed to the writer/paralegal gods that no one would hit a ball my way. A couple went between me and center field. Hey, he’s younger, let him go for them, though I did make an effort to run in my Crocs. Honest, I did!

By the time we took to the field again, one of our strongest players arrived. Everyone shifted, and I was moved to being catcher. I liked being catcher.

I made it to bat five times, that I can recall. I struck out twice. Got one hit that was promptly caught by an infielder. And walked twice. Both of those times I jogged to first base where another female player took over my running because of my shoes. And, yes, thanks to my proxy runner, I scored a run!

It was a great game and the teams, except for the stumpy, middle-aged paralegal on Hooper’s Heroes, were well matched. We lost by 1 point.

I’m told I’m now on the roster and expected to play in future games.

Oh, yeah, this is so totally going into a future Odelia Grey novel. You know it is!

The lesson here is that everything is grist for the writing mill.

And to always bring your sneakers


Mark Combes said...

Oh, to be there with a camera! I'm building the mental image of you prancing across the outfield grass - in your Crocs!

Felicia Donovan said...

Sue Ann, you could parlay this into a new product line - Crocs with Spikes! I can see the ad now, "The most comfortable way to get to third base..."

Holly Y Rechel-Felmlee said...

How brave you are, Sue Ann! I'm inspired to try something new, or at least something I haven't done for awhile. Thanks for making me smile.

Sue Ann Jaffarian said...

Mark, let me make this perfectly clear - I DO NOT prance! Only reindeer and certain interior decorators prance.

I also walked a 5K the day before playing softball. So I guess I'm in pretty darn decent shape for a woman of a certain age and size.

So don't make me hurt you...

Mark Combes said...

Prancing suggests a certain "joie de vivre" that you certainly possess!