Josh on baseball

This morning I was having one of those deep thought moments while I was in the shower. I remembered my short-lived career in pee wee baseball. My parents put me in baseball before I think I even knew what baseball was. The first year or two were dad-pitch seasons. Then we moved up to kid pitch.

I remember being up at bat. The pitch came. I connected. It happened in the blink of an eye. I felt the ball, and then I saw the ball, slowly rolling back toward the pitcher’s mound. But I didn’t swing. It was a close pitch and the ball hit the ring finger on my right hand.

The ball hit the nail on my finger hard enough to reverse direction on impact and roll all the way back to the pitcher’s mound.

I didn’t know what happened. One second I’m watching the pitcher wind up, the ball comes, and then the ball goes. I saw the ball rolling before I realized what’d even happened. The hit. The ball. The confusion. And then the pain.

I think I might’ve been six or seven years old. My coach, my team, and everyone in the stands didn’t know what happened either. We all saw the ball rolling toward the pitcher. I was confused and I was hurt. My coach screamed, “Run!” Everyone on my team screamed, “Run!” My parents screamed, “Run!”

I think I might’ve tried running to first base. I’m pretty sure the pitcher had already sent the ball there. I was just trying to not cry. Blood was pouring from my finger, I was in pain like I’d never felt before, and all I wanted to do was run to my mom in the bleachers so she could stop the pain.

I was out.

And that was the last time that I played baseball.

Maly’s little Yaris

We finalized the purchase of this little Yaris for Maly this afternoon. I’ve now purchased two vehicles from next door (two different neighbors).

It’s bittersweet how we happened upon this little car. It belonged to Alfonso, who was our next-door neighbor. Unfortunately, Alfonso passed away from pancreatic cancer this past April.

This summer we’ve had the opportunity to get to know Alfonso’s adult children as they’ve been active in managing their dad’s estate. While it was a bit awkward, I asked the siblings if they’d entertain selling their dad’s car to me. I figured it would be one less [big] thing for them to have to deal with, and our daughter will be testing for her driver’s license soon and will need a car. They were quick to agree to my offer. So we’ve slowly spent the better part of 3 weeks emailing from afar (one sibling is in Austin, another in Spain, and another in Hungary) and getting all of the necessary documents in order to complete the sale. This purchase wasn’t terrible, but it’s required a few more hoops through which to jump as we bought the car from an estate versus directly from an individual.

Anyway. It’s a cool little car. 2011 Toyota Yaris with barely 24,000 miles on it. It’s basic. No frills on the inside or out. It’s a little 4-cylinder that gets 35 mpg. I think now that we own it, this’ll light a fire under the kid to practice her driving so she can test for her license.

Zilker Relays

I had a lot left in the tank. And I’m 100% A-OK with that. I had fun. We had fun.

Tonight Eric, Jacki, Susanna and I ran the Zilker Relays. We also had two other teams from the Circle C Run Club compete. I never thought I’d see the day when teams (multiple) from the club show up to a race.

The Zilker Relays is a 10-mile course in Zilker Park with four runners. Each runner runs 2.5 miles. Yours truly was nominated to run the anchor leg. There were a lot of teams there, but when you set out on the anchor leg of a 10-mile course, there isn’t really anyone to race. I decided I’d shoot for 15 minutes flat. That’s a 6-minute-mile for 2.5 miles.

I came in at 15:23. I didn’t look at my watch after the first mile. I felt settled in and pretty good at that pace. I could have gone harder. I could’ve found another gear. Especially in that last half mile.

I’m okay with that. Our teams were made up of neighborhood friends. None of us set out to hit a certain time or place in our division.

Fifteen minutes was a good, even number to shoot for. I missed it, but I’m 100% confident that I could’ve come in at 14:5X if I’d stayed dialed in and pushed through a couple spots where I’d let off the gas.

Nature eats civilization

Fifteen or so years ago I drilled an eye bolt into our beautiful cedar elm in the backyard. This was so we could hang our clothesline that stretched from the deck. I think Elise used that clothesline twice.

I’ve backed that bolt out a handful of times as the tree has grown. And then one year, I didn’t.

That mighty elm will finish absorbing it for another year or two. Then only the tree and I will know the fate of that old clothesline bolt.