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  • I have some interesting guys on my softball team. Rick is an ultra-competitor. Tonight in the second game of our double-header, he was playing in Right Center Field and I was playing in Right Field. A lefty was up for the other team, a power hitter, so Rick and I were playing way back by the fence. "Maybe we'll get a chance to make one of those over the fence catches with this guy - I've always wanted to do that." "Yeah, that would be pretty cool. I've noticed this fence has a lot of ivy growing on it, as well. It would be kind of like Wrigley Field!" Just then, lefty launched a huge shot Rick's way - it didn't require him to reach over the fence to haul it in, but he did have to reach up, right up against the fence, and the momentum of the ball sort of pulled him hard against the fence. He made the catch. "Man, that kind of hurt!"

    The light standard to my left was not on, so our part of the field was darker than the rest, after the sun went down. A couple of times, as a fly ball headed Rick's way, he'd say "I can't see it, I can't see it!", but he made the catches everytime. He had missed one earlier, that was an over the head, running with the glove outstretched, tough catch to make in the best of conditions. "My contacts are all messed up. I should have had that one!" He stewed over missing that one all night, even as he caught everything else that came his way.

    I only got one ball hit to my field, and that was a short pop fly when I was playing real deep, that I never had a chance of catching. Slow night in right field. I just enjoyed the scenery, the beautiful night, and took a number of moments to just thoroughly enjoy the moment. Win or lose, I love being out there. It's hard to explain why. Bruce Springsteen once wrote, "I swear I found the keys to the universe in the engine of an old parked car." Not a big car buff myself, but I knew exactly what he was talking about the first time I heard that line. For me, those keys were buried out there in right field, and I dug them up, turned them, and the universe all made sense from that point on.
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