So, I landed a gig writing weekly updates for a website about the Kansas City Royals. Sure, mostly what I write is going to be negative. I mean, it does concern the Royals. Thing is, no matter what happens and how bad they get, I will love them and long for them to return to the glory days of the 70s and 80s. Don’t know if that’s ever going to happen, but oh well. Dreaming is free right?
People have been wondering where this sudden love of baseball has come from. Actually, it’s been here for as long as I can remember. I was never the best baseball player personally. I played like one year of Pony League and that was enough to help me realize that I wasn’t much good at it. More on that in a minute.
As a fan, though, I was really into baseball. I went, quite frequently, with my grandfather to Royals games. He had some season tickets about 4-5 rows back on the first base line. It was awesome. At first I was probably more into the cotton candy, peanuts and other junk food than anything. Slowly, it started to grow on me and I fell in love. I fell in love with the scene of the ballpark. I couldn’t wait to see what Amos Otis, Frank White, Willie Wilson, U.L. Washington (and his toothpick) and George Brett would do next. I would meet my grandfather at his dentist office downtown in Leavenworth and we’d head out in his monster Olds Delta 88 to the “K”. It was exciting.
I got the chance to go to some world series games in 1980 (v. Phillies) and in 1985 (when they won against the Cards) here in KC. I had mistakenly remembered going to more games, but apparently I was imagining that. I guess that’s the magic of baseball right? The most incredible feats and moments are memories that, more than likely, become embellished in one’s own mind over time.
So, why the long hiatus from baseball for me? Well, it wasn’t until my 38th year that this all became apparent and the monster baseball maniac was unleashed once again. I have been seeing a therapist off and on for over a decade now. My divorce in 1999 really did a number on me. I suffer from clinical depression. I take sertraline daily which is a generic for Zoloft. Since taking it the past three years, though, things have been much much better for me.
About 6 months into therapy with my current person (she’s the best by the way), I was asked to try a type of therapy that involved bringing back a memory of when I felt like a failure and we talked about it at length. The memory involved playing baseball in Pony League and batting against a very close friend of mine in one of our games. I couldn’t hit his stuff. He continuously had his tongue sticking out while pitching to me much like you might remember Jordan did while in air about to slam. I pretended that I was laughing at him and got struck out. I just couldn’t hit him. That was it. That was when I stopped caring anything about baseball and actually started hating it.
Almost immediately following the rehash of this situation with my therapist, I was back. I fell back in love with my favorite game and started to drive my wife nuts. Every year I had to have MLB.tv so I can watch all the games. I avidly follow the Royals’ every step. I am able to watch nearly any game live on my iPhone. Started buying baseball cards again “for the boy’s future”. I am in my second year in a paying Fantasy Baseball league. I…well, I’m writing a weekly piece on my favorite team of all time for a website.
I guess this therapy stuff really does work. Go Royals!
P.S. A couple of other things apparently got unlocked during that therapy session as well. I’m now reading comics again. I was just keeping it to graphic novels (AKA adult comics) for a while, but now I’m frequenting our local shop a little too often. Sorry babe, therapy isn’t a perfect science you know.