Strike Three ... by Cindy Beck

© Cindy Beck, 2009

(Keywords: Cindy Beck, mom, mother, breast cancer awareness, Southern Maryland Blue Crabs, sew, talents, humorous writing, LDS humor, humor blog, down home humor, funny, laugh)

You’d have to know my mom—she’s a woman of many talents. For one thing, she’s a fantastic organizer. She’s so good that if the Republican National Committee requested it, she could orchestrate the next Presidential Inaugural Ball with both eyes closed and while under general anesthesia.

I don’t bring that up because I plan on having her anesthetized any time soon, but so you’ll understand her abilities.

If you’re ever on a cruise ship and see the two of us, my mom would be the classiest lady on board, while I’d be the cruise-ee wearing one broken flip-flop and old peddle-pushers* from 1963. That’s assuming I could ever manage to scrape together enough dough to go on a cruise.

My mom also sews. In my elementary school years, she created cute little outfits for me which I proceeded to destroy and decimate by climbing trees and sliding down hills on my backside.

One summer, in hopes of helping me learn to run a household someday ("someday" meaning that unknown point in time when presumably I'd marry a boy instead of playing football with him), Mom undertook teaching me to sew. My handiwork turned out great. The shorts could have held a pair of Siamese twins and their Siamese dogs—with a pant leg for each. After that, Mom gave up educating me on the “genteel” arts.

Now that I’ve supplied our mother-daughter history, I want to make it clear that when I say there are three things my mom can not do, I’m not criticizing her but simply stating facts.

Mom can’t whistle. When she tries, it comes out as a puff of air with sing-songy noises.

Having grown up during hard times, Mom never owned a bike, nor learned to ride one. Therefore, as a nine-year-old I taught Mom all the essentials, and then quickly regretted it when she ran my bike into a pole, crunching my front basket. Even when she finally, sorta, maybe got the hang of balancing on a bike, she could never figure out how to stop. She’d just put her feet down to slow the bike from 60mph to 55, and then bail off, leaving the bike to weave down the street and crash into the nearest parked car.

The last thing Mom can’t do is throw a ball. Any ball. Not even a wadded piece of paper into a trash can.

So, when I answered the phone on Friday and Mom said, “Because of my work with Civista Health in promoting breast cancer awareness, there’s a possibility I may throw out the first pitch at the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs [minor league] baseball game in two weeks,” I fell on the floor, laughing. With tears rolling down my face.

Corky Porky Pie, the dog, ambled over to see if I’d had a stroke.

I finally quit with the hysterics and pulled the phone away from the dog, who was carrying it to the backyard to bury it. “They asked you to throw a ball? At a real ball game? While they were at it, why didn't they just ask you to ride a bike around the bases afterwards?”

Mom laughed at that thought as much as I did.

When my husband, Russ, came home a little later, I told him the news. He looked at me incredulously. “Your mom? Throw out the first pitch? We’re talking your mom? With a real ball? While they were at it, why didn’t they just ask her to whistle the national anthem?”

I know some might think I made this up, so let me set the record straight right now. I kid you not.

If Mom is chosen to throw out the first pitch, it will be a day that lives on in infamy for some poor event organizer for the Blue Crabs. Emergency personnel will probably take him off in a straight jacket as he mumbles, “But she was supposed to throw it over home plate, not knock out the lights on the scoreboard!”

With a little luck, there’ll be a webcam at the baseball game. I live halfway across the country and won't be able to be there, but I have to see my mom throwing a pitch. I just hope she doesn’t bean anyone.

And from what Mom tells me, so does she.

* For those who weren’t around in the dark ages, “peddle-pushers” were an early version of capris.

What's playing in my head: Take Me Out to the Ball Game, featuring Harry Caray and the Chicago Cubs fans.


CONTEST WINNER: Nancy is the winner of the book, Martha's Freedom Train from last week's contest. Nancy, please email your mailing address to me at bumblebeephoto2(at)yahoo(dot)com.


Slamdunk said...

Very funny post Cindy, and best wishes to mom--I am sure she will do just fine.

Having discussed this topic last week, my suggestion to her is just don't be like the mayor of Cincinnati.

Rachelle Christensen said...

Funny! That is so cool. Loved seeing a picture of your mom. She sounds like a neat lady.

Dave Beck said...

I loved this. I'd love to see her throw that ball. I didn't think a Blue Crab's game could get any better but having her throw the pitch - that would be great. She'll probably surprise us all!

Dave Beck said...

I forgot to add, very nice picture!

Cheri J. Crane said...

Your mom sounds like an awesomely cool woman. And if it makes you feel any better about the sewing thing, my mother spent an entire summer trying to teach me how to be a chorister. She finally caught on that I lack the coordination needed for this task. ;)

Roberta Kieliger said...

I'm not sure I want to do this after seeing the mayor of Cincinnati.

Donna Cunningham said...

I just laughed so hard! Roberta, maybe you could just roll it like a bowling ball so no one gets hurt! Loved this story!

Mary McCullough said...

Hmmm, I didn't know these interesting facts about Roberta. What a hoot! Thanks for filling me in.
I've already bought my tickets for the Blue Crabs breast cancer awareness night and now can't wait for the first ball to be thrown-I'll be the one in the pink helmet.

Girl Tornado said...

Oh that's absolutely hilarious! I also am wishing "best wishes" to your mom, sounds like she is going to need them.

That's a great pic of your mom, on a cruise ship it looks like? :)