Lou Gehrig on night baseball

The job I have right now - for the next couple of weeks, at least - sometimes inspires me to delve into information about Lou Gehrig.  (It's Gehrig, not Gherig, by the way.)

Many months ago, I came across a fun interview that Lou did with a guy named Dwight Merriam, of KROC.  They talked about all kinds of basebally subjects, but this one comment on night baseball games struck me as odd in a funny kind of way. There was a shift in the days of the Great Depression from baseball games being played in the daytime to being played at night, made possible by electricity and made necessary by dwindling spectatorship.  Playing at night meant that folks who worked during the day could come to the evening games, and ticket sales were (as always) important.  The first night baseball game was played in 1935, but it didn't really take off until after the war.  The Chicaco Cubs were the lone daytime holdout for decades, and they didn't install lights at Wrigley until 1988.

While fans seemed to take to night baseball pretty quickly, a lot of the people IN baseball didn't like the change.  As a self-professed analog person in a digital world, I totally 'get' an innate resistance to change brought on by technology, and some of the major arguments from 80 years ago are tinged with quaint antique notions.  For example, one major worry was that players would have a hard time shifting betweein lighting conditions and that there would be more injuries during night games (per this site).

Want to know what Lou Gehrig thought?  Read this excerpt from that 1939 interview, and keep in mind that Gehrig and the Yankees lost their first night game, in Philadelphia, prior to this interview.  (Note: I've put my favorite comment in bold.)

Dwight Merriam, KROC: Lou, what's your opinion of night baseball?

Lou Gehrig: Well, night baseball is strictly a show and is strictly advantageous to the owners' pocketbook. But as far as being a true exhibition of baseball, well, I don't think I can say it is, and it's very difficult on the ballplayers themselves. Of course, we realize that the men who work in the daytime like to get out at night and really see a spectacle, and we do all in our power to give them their money's worth. But after all, it's not really baseball. Real baseball should be played in the daytime, in the sunshine.

 I love baseball.  I don't really 'follow' it, I don't know many players and I can only tell you the Phillies won the world series last year because one of my best friends is a hardcore fan.  It was a long time before I'd return to a stadium or even watch a game after the big players strick in the 90s.  But I sure do love going to stadiums, especially major league stadiums, and it doesn't take much for me to get caught up in the traditions of our national pastime.


only for you, Bill

In my job, I deal with lots of people, including people who are not necessarily tech savvy.  This can sometime cause a flurry of small problems, as one of our major fundraising events centers around heavy use of a website.

I have one one fundraising team captain who is not really interested in messing around with the website.  He's from an older generation and isn't as comfortable with the ins and outs as we youngsters are.  He's also not quite sure yet how much to trust the internet, and in particular, how much to trust credit card transactions over the internet.  He is the nicest man, though, diligent and really dedicated to the cause.

He got in touch with me the other day, asking me if it would be ok if he could call me today and give me his credit card information to process a donation.

I said, For you Bill, I would, and gladly.

Ok I didn't actually say that, but how suave would that have been?

What's the most charming thing you've said to somebody?


feelin' right this time of year

Fall, leaves, fall; die, flowers, away;
Lengthen night and shorten day;
Every leaf speaks bliss to me,
Fluttering from the autumn tree.

–Emily Brontë (1818–48)


the road trip with no predetermined destination, revisited

So I have road trips on the brain.  Back a while ago, I mentioned that I would like to go on a road trip with no predetermined destination, with the caveat that I did want to have some kind of ultimate goal or at least idea of a goal in mind for somewhere on down the line.

Brian said this made him sad, because there IS a predetermined destination. My thought was, yes ultimately you're aiming for somewhere, but that doesn't mean you have to go STRAIGHT there, hence it's an unplanned road trip! Same thing, right?

Brian said that you're supposed to just go and 'see where the road takes you.' I have no idea what that means.

No. Seriously. The concept is unfathomable. How do you decide where to turn?

Apparently, I have nary a spontaneous bone in my body.

How do you decide where to turn, when you're on a spontaneous road trip to who-knows-where?


the video of Anne Frank

I saw on CBS.com (and a number of other blogs) that footage of Anne Frank, the Jewish teenager who died at the hands of the Nazis and whose diary has been published and read by many, has recently been discovered.  In the video, a neighbor of Anne's is leaving to go to a wedding.  Anne is looking out her window.  It's easy to recognize her shadowed eyes and dark hair.

You can see the video here.

Of course, I got lost in a timesuck of watching Anne Frank videos and reading about her life, her family, and her legacy.  I read the Diary of Anne Frank when I was around her age, and I remember feeling so sad.  I could relate to her in many ways, but there were other things in her life that I had no way of comprehending.  Heady, heady stuff for a young teenager.  I probably would have had a breakdown in her situation.  As I often remind Brian, I have little, if any, survival instinct and I might not fare well in a do-or-die situation.

Heady, heady stuff for a Tuesday.


I think I forgot to mention ...

... that we are moving!

Yes, we are relocating.  To a completely different and new-to-us part of the country.  Many hundreds of miles away from family.

We leave in 3.5 weeks.

THREE POINT FIVE WEEKS we are leaving Richmond and driving to Denver.  And I have only had 2 breakdowns (that I can remember).  (and one of those was really small.)

I love Richmond, and I am really really sad to be leaving it.  I love my job, I love my neighborhood, I love this town.  But I also love snow, and I love major league baseball, and I love my husband.  There is some sadness in leaving Richmond, but there is much joy in going to Denver.  It means Brian is finally going to live his calling.  It means we will have a fresh start in a new place, just us, together, everything as 'we' or 'us' or 'our.'

This is a new chapter in my story, in his story, in OUR story.  This will be a major dividing point - we'll have Before Denver, which is a nebulous mis-mash of Ashley's life and Brian's life and Brian and Ashley's life together, and we'll have After We Moved To Denver, which will be wholly ours.

You know what else this means?  ROAD TRIP!!

Anybody have any tips on road tripping with a papillon?


Water - it's important, y'all

It's amazing how big of a difference water makes in day-to-day physical function.  I have often sat in a slump at 2pm, wondering why I can't seem to focus my eyes or concentrate on anything, only to realize that I had not yet taken a single sip of water that day.

Granted, I'll have a piece or two of fruit most days for breakfast, which is a good step toward proper hydration. But there's nothing like dehydration to get me permanently sidetracked in a sorry slump.  One or two cups is enough to revive me, but it's sometimes an effort to get a full 8 cups throughout the day.  Generally, if I don't get it all in while I'm at work, I don't get it all in.

I urge you to learn your body's signs of dehydration.  For me, I lose the ability to concentrate.  I will 'come-to' with my head to the side, staring at my computer screen, with no memory of how the previous moments passed.  Also, the back of my tongue will feel dry.  If it's REALLY bad, I'll get a slight headache above my eyebrows and find any movement to require more effort than usual (read: I get clumsy).

How do you know when you're dehydrated?  What are your symptoms?

Photo by Nico van der Merwe, from here.


Manic Monday #185

It's Monday!  And that means it's time for another Manic Monday post.  This week's MM is coming up in the evening, for a change of pace.  At least, that's what I'm going to pose this late post as.  Here goes!  And of course, please play along here.

What word describes you best?

ooooh..just one word?  I'd really like to do some kind of deep philosophical cop-out and say something like 'myself' - but that's lame.  I think one word that describes me well, if not best, is actually introverted.  I am really introverted, and this is a major driving force behind what matters to me, and in a large part it shapes who I am.  Because I'm introverted, I want to be home a lot, and because I spend a lot of time at home, I want my home to be a nice, warm, welcoming, interesting place.  Because I'm introverted, I limit the number of people I spend time with, and the friendships I do have are really meaningful to me.  To pass the time, I might knit or sew or write or read - solo, quiet activities.  I have an interest in photography - always looking and observing, less inclined to be a part of the action and more inclined to watch the action and enjoy it from my own perspective.  You know, that kind of thing.

What drives you every day?

A 2001 Toyota Highlander.
Jokes aside, I don't know.  I love my job, I like getting up in the morning and going to work.  But career isn't what drives me.  I don't know what drives me, really.  Just a resolute understanding that no matter what, this is life and life goes on.

Where do you want to retire?

 Oh!  I know this one!  Hawaii! 
Or maybe Alaska!!
Or maybe a yurt in New Mexico!
Or a house boat!
Or a beach house on the rocky Maine coast!

oooh...I don't know. 

How about you?