Family: June 2008 Archives

Worn out

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I have several new entries in work, but I'm too beat to finish any of them. It was a fun weekend, but a long one. On Saturday morning, my oldest son was one of a number of Barthelmes Conservatory students to perform in a program for the OK Mozart festival in Bartlesville. While the students performed, I minded the youngest son, walking up and down the ramps and stairs at the Bartlesville Community Center, buying a snack at the gas station across the street, and talking a walk past First Baptist Church (where I went to church when I lived in Bartlesville 40 years ago), the Price Tower, and Robert Indiana's big 66 sculpture.

After a quick lunch at Arby's (where we learned that the manager, recently relocated from Kansas, was a music aficionado who hadn't yet learned about OK Mozart), we headed west, via Pawhuska, Hominy, and Cleveland to the Pawnee Bill Ranch for the big Pawnee Bill Wild West Show. The show happens the last three Saturday nights in June, a recreation of some of the acts that were included in the show that toured the world in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The show included trick riding and roping, dramatizations involving Cossacks and Mexicans and stagecoaches and cowboys, Indian dancing, and some slapstick comedy. Before the show, there are reenactments and music up on the hill, the museum and mansion are open, and there's a barbecue supper, as well as a variety of pushcarts. We all had a great time. The show itself starts at 7:30 and ends about 10. Pawnee is an hour west of Tulsa via the Cimarron Turnpike.

Sunday, we had lunch at Delta Cafe, then the big kids and I spent three hours cutting up fallen limbs and dragging them to the curb. Then we went over to my dad's house, and I helped him with the roof of a new storage shed while the kids and their cousins helped to paint the shed. We ate hamburgers and watched "The Best of Mike Myers" on TV.

I still had a column to finish, so I got up at about 3:30 a.m. and headed to IHOP. After a full day of work, I attended the initial meeting of the PLANiTULSA partners -- very interesting, more about that in my column next week -- then came home to the family.

So that's all i can give you tonight.

The loser team

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Joel at On the Other Foot uses the occasion of a Moses Lake Pirates game -- "a kind of a Z-league semi-collegiate baseball team" -- to reminisce about his own baseball career:

I don't know if other guys my age remember these, but the league usually had a "loser team" with really patient coaches so that the kids who hadn't a hope of being any good on the field could still play. (Sort of a Bad News Bears without Tatum O'Neal and with less skill.) Not surprisingly, I was on that loser team every year. (Bernie Leingang and Pastor Sid Cox, if you ever Google your names and run across this, thank you for coaching us. You guys had patience that would make Job look like a crankhead.)

I know about the loser team. I was on the loser team for my one and only year of Little League. I was so bad I played right field -- when I played at all -- on the loser team.

My school had two teams. The boys on the good team started playing in 2nd grade. They formed another team in 3rd grade -- the Holland Hall Hawks.

Holland Hall's old campus at 2626 S. Birmingham Pl. ("Eight Acres") had a football field that became two diamonds during baseball season. The good team -- someone out there is bound to remember the team name -- played on the diamond at the north end. It was called Fenway Park because the back wall of the gymnasium dominated the view toward left field.

The Hawks had the south diamond, nearer to 27th St. It was known as Wrigley Field because of the ivy growing in the ditch on the far side beyond left field.

We never won a game. The last game of the season, we came close to beating a team from Paul Revere School, a school that didn't even have its own playing field. (The game was played at Heller Park.) Our manager, Doss Briggs's dad, promised us a soda if we won, and we had a lead for a time, but blew the lead in the late innings.

My grandmother, who later in life would be a devoted fan of the hapless Chicago Cubs of the 1970s, loved to watch us play. She laughed as we watched butterflies, picked dandelions, chewed on our mitts, threw the ball past each other, and reacted belatedly to any ball that came our way.

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This page is a archive of entries in the Family category from June 2008.

Family: May 2008 is the previous archive.

Family: July 2008 is the next archive.

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