I’m sitting at an airport in St. Louis on my way to Chicago’s Wrigley Field. I’m observing the road warriors talking on their cell phones while others hack away at their laptops. It’s a typical summer mix. Ladies in business suits and lacquered nails. Guys in polo shirts and sports jackets, and a smattering of families with kids in tow. But I’ve just noted a foursome which probably has something else on their mind. Baseball.
Two dads and their sons are headed to “the friendly confines of Wrigley Field.” The sons are somewhere in their late teens (it’s harder for me to tell ages now days), but they have something in common – the game. I’m eavesdropping and hearing talk about shortstops and range; OBP; who of their friends is getting a “ride” for their baseball skills, and who is/was a better catcher, Joe Mauer or Johnny Bench (my money is on Pudge).
I’m glad to see this connection which will probably become a common touchstone for all of them. My grandfather and I had that. Although he and I did not have a lot in common, and English was his second language, we had baseball. I still remember him sitting in his favorite chair listening to his beloved Dodgers (in a Spanish broadcast, of course); something he did every day during the season. But it was this love of The Game, which connected us then and now. And makes the game of baseball special for me – and now for my son.