I was never a particularly athletic or coordinated person. I recall mostly striking out or getting walked during little league. And as a softer-natured catcher, I don’t think my trash talking behind the plate scared anybody. I did make one incredible, game saving catch in right field once.
The spring was an exciting time of year for me. As the weather warmed up, I knew that school was starting to come to a close and that it was almost summer vacation. For me, summer vacation meant superhero movies, sleeping in, and baseball. To pacify myself until T-ball or little league started, I would watch a documentary about the LA Dodger’s 1988 World Series winning season over and over. I also watched the 1993 film “Rookie of the Year” obsessively. Man, I wanted to be Thomas Ian Nicholas in that movie so bad. I never imagined I could play that dream out.
Last Christmas my wife and I decided to buy each other a Wii game system, including the Wii Sport game. I know I am a few years behind, but I was excited. Much to my surprise, I am actually very athletic and good at team sports, even if it is just in the Wii universe. Less than four months after buying the Wii, my Mii is a golf, tennis, and bowling pro and I hit multiple home runs every inning! If I had known I could be so good at so many sports with such little effort, I would have started playing much earlier. I don’t mean to brag, but I’m kind of a Wii Sport wunderkind.
In all seriousness, it has been a positive experience for me to rediscover sports in a safe environment, such as my own living room. The thought of playing real world baseball after 16 years is a bit intimidating, but my Wii experience the last few months has helped my confidence to grow. I actually went to the batting cages last week and signed up to play on a city league this summer.
It’s been fun for me to let out my competitive nature in something other than pop culture trivia. It’s very awkward to admit, but I’ve done lots of fist pumping by myself when I’ve had a birdie playing golf or gotten a strike while bowling.
Another perk of my new found jockhood is that my 16-month old son and I have been bonding over sports already. He doesn’t know how to throw a ball yet and I have no idea what the rules of football are, but he loves to swing the Wii remote and cheer when I get excited. My dad loved to watch sports, but wasn’t one to watch or play sports with others. I finally get to experience that male bonding over sports I never had as a child with my own son.
—Photo credit: makelessnoise/Flickr