I played softball for the first time today. Softball is basically baseball with underarm pitching and all the previous experience I had had of this game was on my Terminator 8-bit video game system. Did you know about the guy who was so bad that he was cheered on by his opposition for inadvertently helping their team? Well, today I was that guy.
There were lots of softball debutants on my team but they distinguished themselves by taking some spectacular catches in the outfield. The fact that we lost 15-0 after 4 innings each, that too thanks to a euthanasiac rule of stopping the game if one team went 15 runs ahead of the other is proof enough that I wasn't the only cause for defeat. I went in steaming today and spilled easy catches and botched the easiest run-outs & double plays, therefore being the central character in my team's tragic story. My batting was my only relative consolation as I middled every pitch that came my way but in keeping with the rest of my day holed out to one fielder or other in the deep. The other batters on my team couldn't even bring bat to ball hence our grand score of 0.
At the end of it all though, I was still pleased. No, not because of the gleeful smile that every player on the opposing side gave me during post-game hi fives between the two rival teams - that was the painful part. What was fun though was being out on a field in the evening after quite a few years, on a team, chasing a ball albeit with little success. Life affords such opportunities so few and far between nowadays that my team mates (a mix of 50-60 year old Asian, American and Latino men & women) were quite lenient with my mess-ups. As far as I am concerned things can only improve from now on. Sports has always been such an endeavour for me. Most days I am just the jester in any sporting encounter but all that keeps me going is the rare day when I am the king, something which is all the more satisfying post all those trials and tribulations.