July 16, 2009
As kids growing up, my brother, my friends and I played many different games to provide us with our entertainment. In our computerless, one TV channel, Nintendoless lives we had other ways to occupy ourselves. We played sports. Lots of sports.
I’m not making a statement here about children being spoiled with electronic games or anything and I’m not going to do the old “back in the good old days” routine, either. It’s just a fact. Those electronic games were just not available to us. Table hockey and board games were about the closest thing we had to compare to today’s electronic games and those were usually played only when it was raining outside and the rink was closed.
It didn’t matter what season of the year we were in, we played the sport that was appropriate to the weather. Street hockey and shinny in winter, baseball in late spring and summer and football in the fall. Throw in some school sports like volleyball, basketball and track and we were running twelve months a year.
We were all involved in the organized aspect of the sports, too, either through local minor sports associations or school but the real fun was in the pick-up games in the street or in the school yard. Unsupervised, no umps, no refs, no parents and plenty of make-it-up-as-you-go rules that sometimes resulted in more than a few arguments and fights.
Whatever sport I was currently playing was my favourite at the time. The one nice hot day that we’ve recently had this summer reminded me of playing baseball back then. Usually, by the middle of July, the organized games were over but the fun games were just beginning.
During the summer, because of summer camps and family vacations, we very seldom had enough people for a 9 on 9 pickup game of baseball so we played either 500 or Scrub. We would play for hours at a time in the hot summer sun cooling off with the occasional glass of Kool Aid or running to the town well to douse our heads in the cold water.
It’s no secret that I’m an avid sports fan and I watch way too many televised sporting events but my passion for sports came from their purest form. Playing the game to play the game. Sure, I like to watch sports but I love to play them.
I’m lucky enough to share this passion with the members of the Eden Valley Senators Twilite Baseball team. We recently attended the SBA Provincial Playoff Tournament in Davidson where our won/loss record wasn’t so great but our shared love of the game and the camaraderie that accompanies it will keep us coming back time and again.
"For when the One Great Scorer comes, / To write against your name, / He marks - not that you won or lost - / But how you played the Game."- Grantland Rice-(1880-1954).