charlie-brownGreetings, my fellow port swillers!

Well, this evening saw the first softball practice of the Robbo Family Spring 2014 little league softball season, with the youngest gel’s Triple-A squad assembling for their inaugural meeting down the local elementary school diamond.    I expect the eldest gel’s senior squad will hold their first practice very shortly as well.   As has been the case the past few years, I will be contributing my little bit to the cause by serving as an assistant coach on both gel’s teams.

Counting Fall Ball and the Spring Season separately, a quick calculation on ol’ Robbo’s fingers indicates that this is his 14th half-season of coaching and/or managing gels’ softball in some capacity or other.   I must say that at this point I still know next to nothing about the job, either in terms of teaching technique or in terms of what they call personnel management.  But give me a leader who knows what he or she is about, and I flatter myself that I’m a pretty decent second fiddle.  With that role I am quite content.

Still, what I love most about the experience is just being out at the diamond.  There’s just a certain feel about the grounds, the weather and the whole attitude that appeals to me.  Also, I love the repeated marvel of watching twelve random gels starting a season not knowing each other or their coaches from Adam but gradually coalescing into a genuine “team”.

As for the youngest gel, she’s the oldest player on her team and is somewhat hacked that she didn’t make Majors this spring.   I have pointed out to her that she has no right to make Majors, but has to earn it, and that her try-out performance a couple weeks ago was somewhat, ah, lackadaisical.   Perhaps the lesson was learned, because she was throwing the ball around mighty crisp this evening.  Let’s hope it continues.