Favorite

The observer, April 9 

As far as baseball goes, Arkansans' loyalties are divided between the Texas Ranger fans in the southwest corner and St. Louis Cardinal fans everywhere else. Of course there are variations on the theme, but that pretty well sums it up.

We were Rangers kids, and growing up we watched them as much as we could, directing our satellite to the far reaches of the galaxy just to catch a few innings. The picture was no problem, but for some reason we never picked up the sound. Our mom didn't like it, but we would turn up the radio and blast the play-by-play, sitting in front of the TV with baseball gloves at the ready, in case a stray foul ball landed in our living room.

There was something indescribable about those days, when we'd settle down after dinner to listen to the crack of the bat and the roar of the crowd as the lazy summer sun peeked through the windows, taking its time to go to bed. One of those Rangers broadcasters we used to listen to was Steve Busby. Busby once said that baseball was the national pastime because it was a summer game, that Americans were summer people and summer was what they thought of when they thought of their childhood.

He's right. The warm weather always makes us think of being a kid and a big part of that was baseball.

Of course, another part of that was mowing the lawn. Work and play, yet inextricably linked to one another. In the same way that a major league yard has to be clipped, trimmed and mowed before the players unleash their cleats upon it, we had to finish up the chores before heading out to play. The smell of freshly cut grass conjures memories of hard work and of kicking around out in center field, waiting on the next fly ball.

It was with that attitude that we pulled the mower out of the shed last weekend. Within minutes we were transported back in time, thinking of the pack of baseball cards we might buy with our small monetary reward. After the deed was done we stood in the yard, crouched with our hands on our knees, out of breath and sweat coming through our shirt. But with that first whiff of cut grass we weren't just hunched over, dreading the inevitable soreness that tomorrow would bring. We were taking a lead off of first, watching the pitcher's every move, and thinking about stealing second. It was spring time and the Rangers were on the radio.

 

Spotted: We were out grabbing a beer and a Chicken Philly at one of our favorite North Little Rock hangouts, Rocky's Pub, when who should walk through the door? Former Gov. Mike Huckabee, that's who. The Huck was decked out in sweats and accompanied by his wife and another couple. Of note: no beers for the Fox News host. The post-happy hour Rocky's crowd, while surely noting the former governor's presence, let the Hucks eat in peace. Given our liberal leanings, we joked with a friend that it was probably time to pick a new favorite restaurant. Our friend replied quickly and without hesitation, “I'll turn Republican before I stop eating here.”

 

This Palm Sunday morning, The Observer was driving back to Arkansas from a wonderful weekend in Louisiana watching a mating ritual between two rare birds when we decided that just because we were missing church didn't mean we couldn't belt out several verses of “All Glory Laud and Honor to Thee Redeemer King” as we headed down the road. As it happens, the cell phone rang, and it was a Baptist on the other end, also traveling back to Arkansas. She started in with “There Is a Balm in Gilead,” and the Methodist in the car grabbed the phone from us and tried to sing along, but could not, the Baptist's tune being a little different from the one the strayed Baptist-turned-Methodist grew up with. (The Episcopalian didn't know either version.) We couldn't preach like Peter, or pray like Paul, and we couldn't sing in harmony either, but we all had the same idea, anyway.

Favorite

Comments

Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-1 of 1

Add a comment

More by Arkansas Times Staff

Readers also liked…

  • I'm sorry

    I'm sorry we stood by while your generation's hope was smothered by $1.3 trillion in student loan debt, just because you were trying to educate yourselves enough to avoid falling for the snake oil and big talk of a fascist.
    • Nov 17, 2016
  • Snake stories

    The Observer's boss, Uncle Alan, is something of a gentleman farmer on his spread up in Cabot, growing heirloom tomatoes and watermelons and crops of chiggers on property that looks like the perfect farmstead Lenny and George often fantasized about in "Of Mice and Men."
    • Aug 27, 2015
  • Show and tell

    The Observer is an advocate of the A+ method of integrating the arts and using creativity to teach across the curriculum, an approach that the Thea Foundation, with help from the Windgate Charitable Foundation, is offering to schools across the state.
    • Feb 25, 2016

Most Shared

  • "Nasty Woman" at HSU: 32 artists celebrate Women's History Month

    A photograph of a woman doing a headstand so you can see her red underpants. A sculpture by Robyn Horn titled "Approaching Collapse." Those and other works that assistant professor of photography Margo Duvall says "celebrates the female voice in art" for Women's History Month go on exhibit March 1 in the gallery in the Russell Fine Arts Building.
  • Home again

    The plan, formulated months ago, was this: Ellen and I were going to go to Washington for inauguration festivities, then fly out the morning after the balls for Panama City and a long planned cruise to begin with a Panama Canal passage.
  • Who needs courts?

    Not since the John Birch Society's "Impeach Earl Warren" billboards littered Southern roadsides after the Supreme Court's school-integration decision in 1954 has the American judicial system been under such siege, but who would have thought the trifling Arkansas legislature would lead the charge?
  • Bungling

    If the late, great Donald Westlake had written spy thrillers instead of crime capers, they'd read a lot like the opening weeks of the Trump administration.
  • UPDATE: Campus carry bill amended by Senate to require training

    The Senate this morning added an amendment to Rep. Charlie Collins campus carry bill that incorporates the effort denied in committee yesterday to require a 16-hour additional training period before university staff members with concealed carry permits may take the weapons on campus.

Latest in The Observer

  • Love is a verb

    It is Valentine's Day as The Observer writes this, the day of chocolates and lacy underthings past for you, but still the present for Yours Truly.
    • Feb 16, 2017
  • #resist

    First off, great job out there, everybody, with the marching and the sign-making and just getting out of bed and showing up when you could be binge-watching "Dexter."
    • Feb 9, 2017
  • Dispatches

    A deputy Observer and friends recently made the trek to D.C. for the Women's March on Washington, the hugely attended event that bigly showed up the sparse turnout for the inauguration of Dorito Mussolini, his best stab at alternative facts be damned. Sad! Here is a little of what our friend Observed while helping kick open the door on a new age of patriotism and protest.
    • Feb 2, 2017
  • More »

Visit Arkansas

New Crystal Bridges exhibit explores Mexican-American border

New Crystal Bridges exhibit explores Mexican-American border

Border Cantos is a timely, new and free exhibit now on view at Crystal Bridges.

Event Calendar

« »

February

S M T W T F S
  1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28  

Most Recent Comments

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation