Saturday, March 14, 2009

Spring (training) in the air…

Left of the front steps, sitting amidst the dirt and left over bark, the first green shoots of spring bulbs are peeking up through the soil. It would be dishonest of me to take credit for the sun colored daffodils ready to bloom. The gardening labor of the previous homeowner continues welcoming spring year after year at our home. It surprises me every year the flowers grow without my help.

My husband and almost eleven year old son welcome spring in an altogether different fashion. The countdown begins long before the weather warms enough to play. Announcing the Baltimore Orioles are packing for spring training and pre-season baseball is about to begin, signals the end of winter’s cold and dark hold on the Greenstreet males, who are… the proverbial boys of summer.

The traditional following of the “Birds” as they are know in our home... goes back to the childhood my husband enjoyed as a boy. The Baltimore Orioles were the hometown favorite of his grandparents and the team he adopted at a very young age. There has been no fair weather support about it. Tim has ridden with pride, the manic depressive rollercoaster that has been the Oriole history for all of the twenty five plus years I have known him. The mood disorder he experiences during the summer months, requiring no prescription medication, magically disappears as soon as the Orioles have either been eliminated from the playoffs or in one solitary year have actually advanced to the World Series.

In our home we are allowed to cheer our hometown Seattle Mariners as long as they aren’t playing the Orioles. We have traveled from Washington to Baltimore with tickets to Camden Yards and witnessed the Orioles beat the Mariners – something we are careful not to rub in to our neighbors.

When the Orioles are “stinking up the place” we plug our noses in protest … and when the game interferes with family home evening… it certainly gets paused long enough to remind everyone that life is spiritual and, well... baseball is life.

A close friend of Tim’s mother actually used to baby sit young Cal Ripkin and one of our oldest son’s most prized possessions is a picture of Cal – To Kendrick and signed Cal Ripkin. Since baseball lives in the mind forever, helping it stay there are signed balls by other Orioles players, trading cards and memories of traveling to Seattle early enough game day -- glove in hand… hoping for that Oriole foul ball.

Other sports exist so there’s something to do off season. The Boys of Summer are back!


Life as a Greenstreet said...

That's so great it's a family tradition!

Leslie said...

You are such a creative and interesting writer. When are you going to write a book? Your commentaries are hilarious!