Friday, May 06, 2005

To The Cheap Seats...

My daughter plays softball, and I have to tell you that in the grand scheme of things, I could really care less about baseball and all forms thereof. But there is something exciting about a bunch of 8-yr-olds playing their little hearts out and cheering for one another! The parents have all become friends, and we bite our nails and cheer each other on and comment on the progress of the girls (and, let's be honest, the partiality of the umps at times!)

As they get up to bat, the girls in the dugout have cheers that they yell...things like "She's a Home Run Hitter, and You're Never Gonna Get Her!" And then of course, all the parents and spectators have their own things they yell to encourage...one of mine happens to be "To the cheap seats, Katie, to the cheap seats!" The parents all laugh, and we get tickled that I say that because a) the girls have no clue what I am talking about; and b) there aren't any seats in the outfield; and c) technically, WE are in the cheap seats, and hitting the ball toward us would be a foul.

But the girls know to expect my voice booming out as they go to home plate something like this: "Big hit Rachel! Big hit! To the cheap seats...hit it to the cheap seats!" They all know that's one of my trademark lines and that each will hear it as they take their place to receive the next pitch.

Now for those of you who are scratching your head wondering what in the world I am talking about, this is a reference to the set-up of a big league baseball stadium. The cheaper seats are usually out behind center-field, well beyond where most hits would ever land. So my signature "yell" is to tell the girls to hit it further than most.

But I was thinking about that encouragement for everyday life. Think about it...aren't there people on the fringes of life who get the rare treat...the rare "ball in the stands" moment when a cool and memorable thing happens to them. And I began to wonder how often I placed my efforts and my goals to land where most everything else lands...and about the fringe people in my life or in my circle of influence who would be blessed by my efforts extending a little further to them. They sit on the outskirts of society or interaction because they are stretched either by resources or for time, and are relegated to "the cheap seats." How many times could I have gone for a Big Hit! Big Hit! and reached out to touch some people who may otherwise have been too far out to reach out and "catch the ball."

So I don't have an answer for that yet because I have only begun to think about it. But I challenge you, too, to think about the big swings you take in life. Are you aiming for the cheap seats, or playing to the crowd? If you could hit it further...would you?

So think of me next time you are "up to bat" -- Big hit, Blogger..big hit. To the cheap seats!

2 Comments:

At 1:48 PM, Anonymous Giles Hudson said...

OK, this is scary. I'm beginning to understand blogs a teeny, eensy bit. Nice post. Great encouragement.

-Giles

 
At 6:57 PM, Blogger BarbaraFromCalifornia said...

I think you do have the answer, and you have actually not only landed where you were supposed to land, but are in a prime location: watcing your own daughter hit the ball! There is nothing so satisfying as maternal pride and joy!

 

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