February 17, 2007


I love good baseball; I love Cleveland Indian baseball. Sometimes there is a big difference between the two.

But I'm not really a very good baseball fan. I prefer watching the games from the comfort of my living room, getting up when I wish, to go in search of goodies to eat, or just to take a break to read a few lines from the current bestseller. I like being able to remove myself from watching when it starts getting boring or when the Indians are getting pasted good and proper. I don't think I'm exactly a 'fair weather fan', but perhaps I am a fan who likes his baseball from a comfortable chair surrounded by other entertainments, or diversions such as an mp3 player to change my input to music whenever I feel the desire, or reading material to wile away a little time during those low scoring well pitched games. I've also been known to absent myself from in front of the television during the games to spend moments on our outside porch watching the birds pecking away, searching for different varieties of foodstuffs while I refresh myself with iced tea and perhaps a dessert or two, and then to return later to the ballgame to watch a couple more innings. By what I have described, if the baseball club were aware of my antsy routines, they probably wouldn’t let me into their stadium anyway. I’d drive the true fan nuts.

Now if I don't sound like the greatest of baseball fans, I know of one person who really is a fan. That would be my son. He is what I would consider a great baseball fan, not like his old man. My son has always been a fan.

A fan mostly of the Indians, because he grew up with them, although he does have a secondary allegiance to the Washington baseball club. I say baseball club instead of the Nationals, because he became a baseball fan rooting for the lowly Washington Senators. He became a fan of the Senators because we lived in Virginia, near Washington when he was growing up, and true to the rules of what is right, from the fictional book of baseball fan etiquette, he rooted for the home team, the Senators. They were bad, not in the current lingo of bad meaning good, they were in the kings English, bad. He didn't care, he loved them, and he rooted for them. Then when our Washington life was over, he became a Cleveland Indian fan, which he remains to this day mostly. I think though, knowing him, he is grown now, living in Florida, I think he probably feels a pull toward the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, or the Florida Marlins also.

My son also goes to minor league games whenever he can. He likes the game regardless of the venue. He is also in baseball heaven since moving to Florida. He now takes a tour of the spring training sites whenever he can to watch the boys of summer prepare themselves for the season ahead. The collector of baseball cards when he was a young boy now collects photographs of his favorites close up and relaxed before the rigors of the season ahead makes them less accessible. He also, and this is typical and so good, he takes his two sons with him whenever he can, guaranteeing lifelong baseball fans of them, maybe into the next century.

Baseball is a great game, regardless of what kind of fan you are, a pretty bad one like myself who doesn't like to go too far out of his comfort zone, or a very good one like my son. It is a game that is a leveler of men, a game that the participant will go as far as his talent will allow, and a game that will always have us wannabe's watching their every move.

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