Tuesday, June 14, 2011

T-ball begins!

I can definitely tell that summer is in full swing.  Although only 10 days since the last day of school, it already seems like a distant memory, routine wise, to get up and hustle the Boy into presentable clothes and shuttle him through rush-hour traffic over to Roseville. 

With the Breadwinner's job winding down for the summer, and with me gainfully unemployed, we are simply - home.  All the time.  Home home home.  And loving every minute of it.

Our day usually begins with the sound of the Boy climbing the stairs from his basement lair and crawling into bed between us, whispering Good Morning.  Not a bad start.  At least, not a bad start when it's 8:30 or 9:00 instead of 5:30 or 6:00.   We slowly exit to the kitchen to share an unpaced breakfast followed by morning news and a cartoon or two.  Our biggest decision to make before Noon is whether or not we're going to get dressed for the day or stay in Jammies. 

Not a bad gig.

The Boy's afternoons have mostly been filled with the highly entertaining and conveniently located NeighborBoy - in and out of both houses, both sandboxes, and up and down both driveways on the bikes. 

Hours of uninterrupted fun.  And I'm sure he's having a good time as well.  (ba-dum-ching!) 

In fact, he's over there right now, allowing me enough time to jot down a few thoughts here.  For three people with no obligatory attendance required anywhere, we've sure been busy!  Swimming lessons have drawn to a close, he made it through all of them (and loved it toward the end, go figure).  Now, the T-Ball lessons have begun.  Yesterday evening was the first.

If you've never seen the Chevy Chase movie Funny Farm, I recommend it.  Towards the end of the film, when Chevy and his wife decide they want to move away from the crazy small town they've grown to hate after moving there from the big city, they bribe all the horrible neighbors and townsfolk to act extra kind and normal, and well, Norman Rockwellian.  That manufactured, artificial old-fashioned Americana wholesomeness is what they use to trick someone into buying their house so they can leave. 

I experienced the real version yesterday at the local ballpark.  Teams playing on every field.  Perfect temperature and humidity level.  Giant playground full of happy children.  Families picnicking on the green grass with genuine checkerboard blankets.  Grandparents holding hands; soccer games and volleyball games and footballs flying around.  Every inch of Commons Park in use, but nothing crowded.  Nothing fake.  Real people.

And as iconic as it gets for an American summer in the suburbs:  T-Ball practice.  Those of you that have parented a child through T-Ball do not need me to explain how ridiculously ridiculous it is to watch 4-6 year olds attempt to catch a baseball-like object with a baseball mitt.  It just doesn't happen, other than phenoms like the one I know named Isaac.  And when these (normal) kids throw the ball - goodness.  The arm is willing, hurling the ball forward, only to see the ball betray the hand's grip at the last minute and fling itself sideways against all laws of physics. 

The Boy loved it, although completely incompetent.  He's at least ignorant of his incompetence.  I won't tell him.  Just lots of high-fives and try-agains from me, thankyouverymuch.

Oh, but the Funny Farm scene wasn't done.  Just as practice was starting, the local Senior Brass Band arrived for a practice session/impromptu concert in preparation for the upcoming Town Parade.  Not even kidding.  Couldn't make it up.  For all of T-Ball practice, we were serenaded from across the field with "Stars and Stripes Forever" and "Marine's Hymn" and "You're a Grand Ol' Flag" and "My Country Tis of Thee" and "Beauty and the Beast theme song".   Yeah, the last one surprised me too. 


Anywho, at the end of this first day of practice, the very proud team of newfound pre-K friends got to each submit an idea (if they wanted to) for their team name.  Of course, the Boy would find a way to make it awkward.  His pronouncement, in a loud enough voice to be heard over the band, was "The White Twins". 

Yes, folks.  He wanted his team to be called the White Twins.  This very multi-ethnic group of 8 children, of which the Boy was one of 3 white kids. 

His T-Ball instructor stared at me. 

I was of course able to very quickly explain the root of his seemingly inappropriate suggestion - you see, the Minnesota Twins wear white jerseys on weekends.  The Boy, slowly getting more interested in baseball but not understanding the game very well, asked me one time "Which team do you want to win dad?" while it was on TV.  I said, "The team wearing white.  They're the Twins.  We like the Twins." 

The White Twins. 

The Boy's team is named the Diamonds, the only other suggestion offered, after a not-so-close vote.

And admit it, you have the Beauty and the Beast song stuck in your head too.  Heh.   "Tale as old as tiiime..."

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