Dixie Peach: For the Love of the Game

Cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Monday, March 31, 2008

For the Love of the Game

Normally I
just once in a while
only with good reason complain about living in Germany. Usually I'm all quit-yer-bitchin-and-just-bloom-where-you're-planted-dammit-! but this time of year brings a distinct sense of dissatisfaction to my living arrangements.

It's not the dogwoods and azaleas blooming that's making me miss my homeland - it's sports. Two sporting events, actually.

First is the beginning of baseball season. Until I moved away from the US and therefore away from baseball (yeah, I know it can be found in Germany but not here where I live and certainly not on TV), it was my favorite sport. My father was a fiend for baseball. He was a New York Yankees fan his whole life (one of my brothers was named after Joe DiMaggio) but I bucked the trend in my family to be a Yankees fan and became a Baltimore Orioles fan when I lived in the D.C. area. The O's were the closest thing I could get to a hometown baseball team when I lived there and since I couldn't stand any other Washington, D.C. team I thought I should like at least one local-ish team. Plus Cal Ripken, Jr. played for them and I thought he was the hottest looking ball player in the world.

The beginning of baseball season tells me that summer and long days and sweet, warm air is on its way. I always feel younger and more vital when I watch baseball and it's part of why I miss it so much. I even love baseball movies - Bang the Drum Slowly, Pride of the Yankees, Field of Dreams, The Stratton Story and others - and they list among my all-time favorite films. I would love to sit in the stands on opening day and watch the first pitch be thrown. I'd even settle for seeing it on TV.

The other sporting event I miss this time of year is the NCAA basketball tournament. I couldn't care less about professional basketball - if it's on it's okay but I don't really follow it - but I've always loved college basketball. To me it's much more fun to watch because there seems to be so much more heart in it. Know those bracket tournaments people play in the office - the sort where you play for $10 or $20 and you pick who's going to win the entire tournament? I love those things and would participate every year. I even won it one year, much to the annoyance of the men in the office who claimed my ex-husband surely had helped me with my picks. This year, much to the irritation of my sister who went to the University of Virginia and my brother who went to Duke, I'm rooting for the University of North Carolina to win it all. I have an excuse though. UNC's Psycho-T is the nephew of one of my dearest friends.

I'll miss these events that herald the start of spring and then I remind myself that I do have soccer to fall back on and since I've moved to Germany it has become my favorite sport to watch. And soccer players are nearly as hot as baseball players.



Blogger sari said...

This year Nine is playing Little League minors - he tried out and made the team, which we are all very excited about! And Mr. Geek is a coach on his team and I'm the team mom (whoo!) so it's a family affair this year.

I love baseball as well, I am so happy it's here.

I love March for college basketball though I don't watch it. I love to fall asleep on the couch and wake up when it's late and my husband is still sitting there watching a game and it's a live game and it's late and it's just so....comforting for some reason. I'm not really sure why, but I enjoy it.

I'll enjoy some baseball for you, ok??

1:06 AM  
Blogger Kathy said...

I'm a big lover of baseball movies -- I even have my own collection. I've seen the ones you mentioned except for The Stratton Story -- I'll have to go find it.

4:05 AM  
Blogger Rositta said...

Every year my husband has to go to Greece for 6 weeks to be with his mother and I would stay behind. Twice a week I had to send him the baseball stats from the daily papers which I did gladly. Last year I went with him and there was no one here in T-Dot willing to take on that chore. He was pretty unhappy not to know what was going on with his beloved Toronto Blue Jays...ciao

5:16 AM  
Blogger The Big Finn said...

Wrigley Field opening day highlights were just on CNN. I guess the highlights will have to do for now.

10:51 AM  
Blogger Molly said...

My North Carolina son and grandsons were just visiting and I had the pleasure of watching a couple of UNC games with diehard Tarheels. I'm glad you are on our team this year.
Other than that Chapel Hill team I am a lifetime SF Giants fan.

4:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I hope they go all the way. I'll sure tell him he has a fan in Germany!

I love to watch UNC. But, like I Baylor and Lance's coaches, "It ain't wrestlin'" LOL

4:32 AM  
Blogger UmmFarouq said...

Baseball is alive and well in Jordan, I'm happy to say; my son had his first L. League game today, and his team won. He also got a hit (and subsequent runs) each time he was up to bat. Hurrah!
We thought he'd have to miss out on baseball. We make apple pie, but we sure did need that baseball.

7:59 PM  
Blogger Gardner said...

I'm right there with ya, right there with ya. It's the sports that kills ya.

12:30 AM  
Blogger Sirmelja said...

I spent quite a bit of time myself surfing the web trying to figure out some way I could actually watch the NCAA games this season. I'm not addicted, but I am a Tar Heel and love watching the "important" games :-) Sadly, no streaming of games anywhere. Total bummer.

1:39 PM  

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