Thursday, June 9, 2011

Walk It Off!

I don't really like baseball. I never watch it on TV. If I go to a game at a stadium - it is more about the food, the atmosphere, the friends.

Regardless, my kiddo is playing baseball. And I like the kiddo - so I'm trying to like baseball.

This is not an easy task for the following reasons:

I have decided that if you sign up for baseball there is a secret-fine-print-clause that says you must forfeit the right to have a life. They will give you the schedule for the season three days before the first game. They will schedule practices in advance - only to cancel. Schedule "surprise" practices on holiday weekends, random days, and hours before the event. (They may or may not cancel moments before the practice should take place.) They reschedule games with no regard for what day of the week it is, regardless of how many games you have already played that week, and usually do this with about two days notice. You get the never ends.

It's a secret fields do not have addresses. But they randomly say we are playing in Town X. See you there. And we are not "originals" from this area - so maybe everyone else was born with the knowledge of the locations of all random baseball fields in all the surrounding small towns? But I was not. So finding the games is a lot like a scavenger hunt.

It's hot outside. And let's talk about seating - you either get metal bleachers (which are kind of like a large scale George Foreman grill meant to fry all flesh sitting upon them) or splintering wood. And who the hell designs these fields? Have they heard of SHADE-at least for the audience? What do they have against trees? Awnings? Morons.

And then there is the "Walk It Off" phenomenon. Have you seen this? The pitcher winds up - the crazy ball shoots out and nails the batter. And someone (usually male) will yell, "Walk it off!"

I would like to drag these individuals into a dark alley and pummel them with some baseballs to remind them that it hurts like hell to get hit (and I would ask for super-pitching power while I did it). And to remind them that their child likely does not have as much "padding" as their adult bodies.

This week I read about tragedy that occurred resulting in the death of a child on a baseball field. My heart goes out to all the families affected. With this on my mind, I attended a game where one of our team mates was bashed in the face with a flying ball. I understand this happens - it is a risk of the game.

I was very perplexed by the behavior that followed - no one was prepared. (There was a lot of blood.) No one seemed overly concerned. The child was taken off the field and while he could barely stand there was no sense of emergency. In truth - the child's nose was broken and surgery is likely going to be needed to correct the problem. Oh yeah, and he had a concussion--and for the record, I don't think you can just "walk off" a head trauma!

I've considered it a warning sign. If you child is playing sports, or if you have a youngster that you love involved in sports and you attend those games - please, please, please DO NOT expect anyone to know what to do in the event of an emergency. The coaches are often volunteers. The umpires are often students. The parents are just parents - and the minutes waiting for emergency services (assuming anyone realizes they are needed) could make a life and death difference.

I came home and took an online CPR review- I'll contact a local agency to be more official. I'm shopping for our own first-aid kit for sporting events and it will be by my side at every game here-forward. I can not stand the idea of sitting by helplessly while a childs life is in danger. Let's do our best to keep them safe - even if it's in the middle of a game. Smart parenting does not go on hold on the sidelines!


Karen Peterson said...

I am so excited to be a baseball auntie. The Nephew is starting little league next season and I can't wait!

Janet said...

Don't know how I missed this post. Had to laugh at the bleachers being giant George Foreman Grills. Anyway, good for you being concerned about safety. Seems like no one else is!