Monday, June 4, 2012

Ode to Four Year Old T-Ball

I'm pretty sure they invented i-Phones because parents need something to do at 4 year old t-ball.  I'm all for getting kids outside and exercising, but organized sports start way too early these days. 

Granted, I have the Ferris Bueller of the team.  He's not really into rules.  Not really interested in hitting, catching, throwing, or running...pretty much everything.  Actually, he mentioned his favorite part of "t-ball" was the cheer.  He spends the majority of his time looking the other way and finding someone else that wants to goof off too.  He has befriended this little boy, we'll call him John.  John's dad is an assistant coach; he is a nice, friendly guy.  You can tell he is into sports and wants to make sure his son is too.  Unfortunately, John has been sucked into the web of Ferris Bueller.  Together, they spend their games facing right field (that would be backwards), talking about poop, showing each other their underwear, rolling on the ground, and wearing their hat on their feet.  I'm sure John's dad is overjoyed by this friendship. 

I, on the other hand, waffle between being an involved parent and being an annoying one.  I often feel like I have to be the one that yells, "get your hands out of your pants."  Probably more than the coach signed up for.  As Ferris went up to bat, I also felt inclined to say he was right handed, as my husband told the coach he didn't know what "hand he hit with." Apparently, he thought this would be different than the hand he writes with and does EVERYTHING with.  And thus, they continued to let him "poke" the ball with his left hand.  My husband is pushing way to hard for a lefty.  At this point, I don't think we're looking at the next Derek Jeter. 

The good thing is, we have the best coach.  His first email to the parents showed he was a smart guy with good humor and a love for the game.  He mentioned that "the games would be horrible," but it's important to indoctrinate children early.  As baseball is "too boring of a game" to fall in love with it as an adult.  He makes the kids run, tells them funny stories, makes them stand up and cheer for every kid, and shows them how to stand ready so they won't get hit in the face.  Most importantly, he has patience. 

Every game, he is forced to say things that no one, but a coach of 4 year old t-ball, would be forced to say.  "Stop talking like a robot," is a common refrain as well as "whose baby is one the field."  At this point, t-ball is similar to soccer and rugby.  The ball is on the ground a lot and there are frequent pig piles.  The coach prefers that there be "no more than three or four people on any base."  This is typically because everyone else is standing on the pitchers mound.  So three people on second base, actually means they are spread out.  Last week I overheard him mention he was going to "bring a water gun so the kids would focus as they ran to first."  Kids literally get lost "running" the 20 feet to first.  They run to the parking lot, the bathroom, to their grandparents on the other side of the field.  Frequently, they get lapped.  I, and probably every other parent, am in favor of the water gun.  I'm thinking it could cut at least 10 minutes off the game.

That said, I do love it.  I love seeing the little kids when they get a hit.  I love the little girls that come in their pearls and pink gloves, yet also wear their brother's baseball pants.  I love the high fives.  And I'll make little Ferris keep on playing.  At least for a few more years.  My 2 year old spends most of the game trying to run into traffic, but he can already throw with good accuracy and my husband is going to start taping his right hand down...and teaching him to throw a knuckle ball.  I have a lot of years of t-ball ahead of me.  I really ought to start putting wine in my coffee mug. 

1 comment:

  1. I just laughed out loud do hard I lost my breath about spreading out being less than 3 people on a base.