An Even Better Hint Of Spring

Today started off a little rough.

Luckily, Wednesday seemed chastened by my hard talk and tough love.

Later, though, I realized that I was being kind of silly. It didn’t matter whether my work computer was in working order or looked like C-3PO after a visit to the Ugnauts on Cloud City. Because today, my friends, baseball came back to us.

Not long after, my Cincinnati Reds took the field in Goodyear, AZ for their first Cactus League game of Spring Training this year.

After that, there was just no way to be grumpy.

But the day just kept getting better anyway.

Of course, I realize it wasn’t real baseball today. It was a practice game, the first of the pre-season. In the long run, it was probably about as meaningful as an episode of Myrtle Manor*.

But this winter? This winter has sucked. This winter there’s been snow or ice or some frozen mixed concoction straight from the pits of Hell itself on the ground outside my window since the first week in January. This winter we’ve had air cold enough to make the tip of your nose threaten to move to Florida—with or without the rest of your face— if you didn’t wrap it in something fuzzy and warm no matter how ugly that scarf your Aunt Phyllis knitted you happened to look. This winter, well, you get the point.

If there’s anything capable of curing the hypothermia threatening to give us all a permanent chill deep in our souls this late February, it’s baseball. Its warm evenings on the patio listening to games, its pleasant days of brats and beers along the first base line under a golden afternoon sun, its sense of eternal hope as that first pitch flies, and its promise of constancy and dependability. And all of that is just a few short weeks away.

You say today’s game didn’t matter?

Oh, but I beg to differ.

It just didn’t matter in the standings.


*Oh, TLC, how far you’ve fallen from being “The Learning Channel”.