Tag Archives: baseball

Learning From Mistakes …

20 Oct

One of the best parts of sports I enjoy, aside from awesome shows like Friday Night Lights and movies like Hoosiers and Miracle, are the teachable moments that happen often throughout the season and in the playoffs.

We pay attention to the hardworking players who let their game speak for itself and point out that being flashy might not be the best avenue. This whole dabbing thing drives me up the wall.  I enjoy celebrating goals, 3-pointers, home runs, and awesome defensive plays, but dabbing … ugh … it’s in poor form. It’s really for the other person, not so much for yourself. I know there’s going to be all kinds of trash-talkers and show-boaters on teams, giving kids bad examples to follow. They’re always there. Most of the time, though,  jumping and fists up in the air are instinctual forms of celebrating. That big YEAAHHHHH yell is genuine exuberance. You can’t contain your happiness so you just soar.

I’m trying to teach my kids to soar. Not be flashy just soar. But I found out they don’t need lessons in soaring, just in learning from their mistakes so they can soar again.

As I’ve mentioned before … this is a House of Sports and all games involving our favorite teams are on our television. Watching the NLCS playoffs and cheering for our Boys in Blue during the postseason is something we do every chance we get. I remember cheering for them back in the day with my Dad hoping for El Toro, Fernando Valenzuela, to earn the win.  You see we had Fernandomania and continued to bleed Blue ever since. It happens with everyone in their own city with their own team, I imagine.

And as with any playoff series mistakes happen, over, and over, and over again. The only point I can make after my frustration subsides is  … What do you think they learned from that there? What would you have learned?

Don’t beat yourself … let others try to beat you … let them earn their win.

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Los Angeles Dodgers

 

 

This was the common theme for the most recent series. It’s something I often put out there to my kids … the whole “you better empty out your tank when you’re out there, give it everything you got and don’t let anybody out-try you.”

That’s my thing … don’t let anyone out-try you. They may be faster, they may be able to throw the ball farther, they may score more goals, but they better not out-try you. You need to Ninja-Warrior Up! No matter what mistakes you’ve made, learn from them and get back out there. And that’s something my kids pointed out during the series. Mistakes and getting out-tried. It happens. But if you learn from it, you can make a comeback and so our team did.

I’m all out about comebacks and the underdog. I’m all about Cinderella stories and defense winning championships. I’m all about earning the win. I’m glad my kids got to see the ugly parts of losing and winning, as well as the good parts of trying. I’m glad they got to see what can happen if you get it together, even if it took seven games.

You can make it to the next round … and see what happens next.

Buen Camino, my friends.

 

 

 

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40 Accidentally On Purpose Random Acts of Kindness Before 40 … No. 7

16 Mar

It takes commitment.

Serious commitment to put something on your car. Stickers and decals are your car’s tattoos and they mark your interests and personality types. Proud Parent of So-And-So’s Student of The Month, the members of your family, your favorite radio station, or a wise-ass comment in bumper sticker format.

All of these are insights to the type of person you are, but the true sports fan goes beyond their team logo on the back window and delves into the intensive labor of dismantling the license plate frame and replacing it with that of your favorite team. Most license plate frames remain in their original condition … Wondries Honda, Penske Toyota, Mike’s Motors, etc. Nobody ever really takes the time to replace it unless it’s really worth it.

Nobody except the sports fan. He takes no half measures. So when you’re driving, you know one when you see one. Their commitment is evident on license plates and car windows.

So when I was in search for a person deserving of my next Random Act of Kindness, I knew exactly what to look for, I mean I had to be specific. I didn’t want to give it to someone who hated sports. So while driving out of the mall I found him parked between David’s Bridal and Sports Authority. His teal green Chevy Tahoe’s back window sported the traditional “LA” of proud Dodgers fans and the silver plated license plate frame professing his Dodger Blue spirit.

 

40 before 40

40 before 40

 

I took out the two ticket vouchers and placed them in an envelope.

However, just like the flower incident I felt the need for a disclaimer so that no significant others would spin into a jealous rage and break off the relationship because of a mysterious gift. Ugh … jealousy sucks. So once again I wrote a note.

 

I see that you’re a Dodgers fan. Hope you can enjoy these this season. Go Blue!

🙂 40 Random Acts of Kindness Before I Turn 40.

 

Just as I got out of the car to attach the note and tickets … I saw them walking to their car. A family of three … a dad and two sons piling into the SUV. I sighed in disappointment, because I didn’t want them to know who I was, and I kind of liked the fact that I wouldn’t know who they were and I could just envision them enjoying Dodger Dogs and a nice cold one. Smiling.

But then as they got into the car, I realized something … they didnt know me. Never seen me and probably never will again. I was just a stranger doing something nice. A good story for the drive home just for being fan. So I kept walking, tapped on the window, gave them the tickets, and smiled.

“I see your big fans,” I said pointing to their windshield.

And then I walked back to my car and drove away.

Their smiles and disbelief was priceless. I’m starting to really enjoy these Accidentally on Purpose Random Acts of Kindness. They’re making me mindful of other little kindnesses I can do for people. Things that can make their day better, and even if I don’t get a thank you, it doesn’t matter. I’ve made their day better and it makes me feel good doing it. I’ve given them a story that begins with “Remember the time when some lady …”

And that’s a good a thing.

 

 

Back On Deck

22 Nov

It just showed up this morning. Perhaps my buddies TBM, Lame Adventures, BrickHouse Chick, and Fit Recovery were responsible for it showing up unannounced. But it was there … well  pieces of it were there. And I guess that’s all I needed … just a little a piece.

Perspective. A little can go a long way. It’s horrible when it’s missing. You’re agitated and lost. You’re thinking logically, but self-doubt consumes you. It’s the uncertainty that gets you.

Having an emotional hangover sucks, but when compared to today’s historical events involving John F. Kennedy, my loss of perspective didn’t seem so tragic. Just a bump in the road … well more like a ginormous pothole that gave me a flat tire in the middle of nowhere with no spare … But I still needed to fix it. And so I find perspective helping me out and getting me back on the road.

But I also found some help from Babe Ruth. The Great Bambino. So … I’m back on deck.

 

Image via TheThingsWeSay.com

Image via TheThingsWeSay.com

 

 

 

The Most Awesome Panamanian

4 May

He has the ability to change your day. He can affect your outcome. So you either love him or you hate him.

You’re eating a meal, drinking a cold beer, and enjoying the night with a couple of friends.  And then he comes out and you smile. You know the night just went from good to great.

But for some it doesn’t turn out that way. You’re having an awesome day, the sun is shining. It’s a nice 70 degrees, no clouds in sight and everything is going your way, until he walks out.  You shake your head, slump your shoulders, and sigh. You don’t even want to eat your hot dog any more. There’s nothing you can do. It’s over. You need two drinks now.

You love him or you hate him. Most people from Boston hate. Me, I live in California so I don’t share the same hostility.

New York Yankee closer Mariano Rivera before a...

New York Yankee closer Mariano Rivera. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

He walks out.  Six-foot-two and 185 pounds of Panamanian Awesomeness. Mariano Rivera. You love him or you hate him. I’m not a die-hard Yankee fan but I’m a Mariano fan. I follow the player wherever he goes. So when I heard of his torn ACL injury ohhhhhhh I was bumbed out.

He’s 42. In baseball years that’s not a good thing. It’s like being a model, not that I would know anything about that, seeing how I don’t wear heels, and I do wear Chapstick. But I imagine you don’t have too many 42 year-old models out there when teens and 20-somethings are doing the weird model-horse walk down the runway.

So a 42 year-old baseball player with a torn ACL, not cool. He’s in hazard zone, in danger of being sent home permanently.

But he is badass. He’s a closer. He’s the closer. He comes in to finish the job. He’s got over 600 career saves. I can’t tell you how many times I was watching a ball game at a bar and as soon as he came out to close the game you see haters looking at the waitress saying check, please. You see fans ordering another round in celebration of what was to come. He hadn’t even thrown the first pitch, but they knew. They knew.

Mariano Rivera

Mariano Rivera (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Now unfortunately he’s out for the season.

But he’s a Yankee, so you never know. Perhaps back in time for the playoffs.

This organization has massive amounts of cash. I’m sure they can find the best doctors out there to help out my man. If it can be done it will.

But for now my man is down for the count.  Even though he makes about $14 million a year, I still feel for him. I know what it’s like to tear an ACL in the prime of your season. Believe it or not, in my high school days I was a baller. I lettered in three sports for four years. Captain of two varsity teams and athlete of the year twice. I was badass, until I tore my ACL.

Like Mariano … I was out. Unfortunately for me it happened during my senior year and I did not have $14 million.

I felt bad for my man, but now in retrospect, I’m sure he’ll bounce back. It’s not like he’s a Guatemalan in his senior year of high school. He Mariano Rivera … one of the most awesome Panamanians.