Softball Fun

My recreational softball league has had four games now. I’ve attended three. We’ve lost all of them.

In a recreational league, we are by far the most recreational team. A band of individuals slapped into the same group. Too bad we can’t slap each other into attending more games.

In our first three games at least we had enough players to play (we had to borrow a catcher a couple times, though). But today’s game we needed to borrow more than a catcher. Our league requires having at least three females in the field, and only one on our team showed up.

The opposing team was gracious enough to lend us a couple players, and we ended up playing one of our best games yet – ending with a tie. Too bad it didn’t count for anything. Borrowing two players is definitely reason to forfeit.

Oh well. So far we have an anti-perfect season. And you know, when there isn’t the pressure to win, it let’s you laugh at your mistakes and enjoy the small victories that much more.

Go Indies go!


An Unfinished Story that Popped into My Head

When Sal started on a project her excitement was always too much to bear. But this emotion sprang less from her interest in the project, than from her thirst to learn. Her father had always said to her that the ability to learn was the greatest calling. And though neither she nor her father had ever reached great heights in academia, they both nevertheless enjoyed a great multitude of hobbies.


Knit, purl, knit, purl – the pattern of a clean row of knit yarn. Keep the strand taught across the fingers of your left hand, but not too much.

“Don’t let your hands get too sweaty” was a warning her father always gave her, though it was never a problem that she encountered.

“Yours are the sweaty hands” she would say.

“Are yours too cool to sweat?” her father would invariably ask. She smirked every time he said it, though the humour of this jest waned in recent years.


“How much is needed today?” Sal asked one morning, pointing to the skeins of yarn scattered atop the breakfast table.

“Well, let’s see,” said her father. He pulled a crinkly sheet of paper from underneath a tangled mass of bluish-grey yarn and held it stiffly in his hand. “Four more squares today to keep up our schedule,” referring to a silent agreement kept between Sal and her father.

Musings on Travel

This weekend I had the privilege of flying out to Calgary to visit my sister and her family, something I have now been able to do twice in two years. As always, seeing everyone was a lot of fun. Special highlights include playing on playgrounds with my nephew and ni (niece plural) and playing a LOT of board games.


One thing in particular that was special about this trip was seeing my old English/Drama teacher from high school. It had been 7 years since I last saw her, and I was blown away by how much I had forgotten and how much I remembered. In particular, I just wanted to give her a shout-out here and let her know how amazing I think she is. PH, the way you can so effortlessly find the amazing-ness in people is really remarkable. You are motherliness incarnate. It was great seeing you, and next time I’m in town, I’ll be sure to drop by again.


To change gears completely, I wanted to talk briefly about my trip to Calgary. It started with a very early morning wake up.


There’s something strangely magical about the wee hours of the morning. Maybe magical isn’t quite right – more like other-worldly. In any other circumstance, being up at 4am is a rude awakening and a soporific foreshadowing of a sleep deprived day ahead. But for some reason, when I enter the early morn with purpose, it takes on a whole new feeling. It almost feels like a privilege – having an excuse to be softly padding around the city while everyone around me is silently unaware.


It ruins the mood a little, but I also found that being around what are normally busy intersections at those early hours reminded me very strongly of post-apocalyptic/zombie movies.


Such are my jet-lagged musings.

Ending the World with Baseball

For those of you that are still on Earth to read this, you are probably already well aware that you have not been chosen as one of the righteous few, but have instead been picked for the team of the damned. But hey, so far (at least in Toronto) the only difference I’ve noticed between Earth and Hell on Earth is that the weather got a little more cloudy. Not that bad I’d say.

I consider myself lucky that I got to see the Jays play Tampa Bay before the Rapture arrived. They didn’t win that first game, but with all the errors that were made, they did mount a surprising comeback to lose by only one run.

And then for the day of the Rapture, I got to see the Jays whoop the Houston Astros. A pretty good way to spend the last real day on Earth.

Then, for my first day of Hell on Earth I got to play my first softball game since my days at camp. Even though we lost, it was a pretty great time for our first game playing together. But then I saw the fourth installment of Pirates of the Caribbean. I certainly felt as if the world was ending while watching that film.

Anyway, so far Hell ain’t that bad.

Run Lola Run

Run Lola Run movie image

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Two weeks ago I started running (again). I don’t think the “again” really counts, because I’ve never consistently run for any decent period of time. I have had bouts of running in the past, but my legs were always an enormously limiting factor. I would get shin-splints almost instantly, which is something pretty difficult to work through.

On a seemingly unrelated note, I started having terrible back pain two years ago. I suspect it began one summer at the camp sail docks, lifting just the right boat in just the wrong way. The pain went away eventually, but came back in full force thanks to a squash injury (a sport notorious for back injuries due to the ducking and twisting motions it requires). Since then I’ve seen three physiotherapists and two massage therapists with a 2 month backpacking trip somewhere in between. Nothing seemed to be working. Nothing until this last massage therapist.

This guy is a freakin’ miracle worker. The treatments hurt like hell, but now I can sit down for any length of time without being in terrible amounts of pain. And somehow through the course of these treatments it became clear that these back injuries were not a result of simply pulling my back. It had been something that was building for a long time. Too much sitting, not enough activity to keep the hips mobile. My massage therapist’s theory is that if the muscles in the hips are too stiff, they constrict the innervating nerves and arteries of the legs, which makes the leg muscles more stiff and cuts off their circulation (which could lead to things like shin-splints).

I’m not sure how accurate the theory is. It certainly sounds plausible. But either way, the treatment WORKS. So like I said, I started running last week, and suddenly the limiting factor isn’t my legs any more – it’s my lungs! Just the way it should be considering I have mild asthma! But this is awesome. I put on an entertaining podcast, throw on my runners and away I go. I was running every other day for 10 days up until this past Thursday (at which point I had a busy weekend visiting family). But tomorrow I’m getting back on the road!

It feels so good to be running. I can’t believe I’ve been doing without it for so long.

A Mother’s Day to Remember

My Ma’s birthday is always close to Mother’s Day, but this year they were one and the same.

We celebrated by going out to South 202 in Milton. Normally I would go with the ribs, which are fantastic, but tonight John (the chef) apparently decided to let the creative juices flow and on special was a veal chop with adjective adjective adjective chocolate sauce. Everything before ‘chocolate sauce’ now eludes me, because the idea was so foreign. But even so, I took the leap and it was SO worth it. Even my brother, who certainly enjoys the ribs even more than I do agreed that the chocolate sauce veal was phenomenal. Even claimed he would make the 45 min trip to Milton on a regular basis to have it if it were on the menu.

The food was awesome, and the company even better.

Happy Mother’s Day and Happy Birthday, Ma.

I love you tons.


More Planning

More planning is what I need. Planning ahead that is. Sundays continue to creep up on me and just as I am going to bed I remember, ‘Oh crud! my blog!’

This week some pretty memorable things happened that (I think) give me a decent excuse for forgetting (once again) to write at a time of day when I shouldn’t be sleeping. This past week the NDP surged ahead of the Liberals in the polls, which was pretty surprising to all of us I think (or maybe just if you’re Canadian). It was raining a lot in Toronto (which was annoying and wet). And I think most memorable of all were the events of just tonight, with the announcement of the death of Osama Bin Laden. Now, I can’t really use this last one as an excuse, because it happened at the very end of the week, but it’s historical enough that it warrant’s mention.

And on a personal note, I went for my first run post long-time back injury and my first run of the season. And after that for no discernible reason I walked for an hour across downtown Toronto. So if I wasn’t sore before, I sure am now.

As a strange, and interesting endorsement, check out a game called Minecraft. It’s Sims-esque in that there is no goal. The graphics look lego-ey, but don’t let that phase you. You can run around, collecting materials, create tools, and basically fashion the landscape however you choose with your two blocky, digital hands. I’ve only played for a few minutes, but it seems genuinely interesting. Certainly kid friendly. Check out there site where there’s a video of some gameplay.

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