Friday, April 11, 2008

Just a game of catch

I think I went through some sort of baseball-inspired time warp last night.

Like most fathers, I’ve spent many hours playing catch with my son in the back yard or tossing Wiffle ball for him to smack. But more often than I am proud, his plea of “Can we play catch, Dad?” was answered with “I’m a bit busy right now, son.”

But when I was to throw the first ball out in a Mizzou baseball game next Sunday, I realized with some terror that my 57-year-old right arm had not thrown overhand in at least five years. That corresponds with the time my son left high school for college.
So I was relieved when Garrett offered to toss the ball around with me this week. But then he added “when I get some time.” Sounded a bit too familiar.

Garrett’s about to graduate as a mechanical engineer and is overwhelmed with classes, job interviews and the construction of a hydrogen fuel cell race car. So he is legitimately busy.

Despite all that, he made it over, last night, mitt in hand. Wre went out to a nearby field, where HE patiently gave ME advice.

“Let’s start close, Dad. "

“Keep it up where I can catch it, Dad.”

“That’s it! Throw it again just like that, Dad.”

I think the last time someone said that to me I was 12 years old. Except Dad didn’t call me "dad."

Catch with your boy – it’s always been wonderful. I just never thought it would be quite like this. It’s more than a game, in a way.

It’s catching life again.

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