Now it is officially here!

Published 12:00 am Saturday, April 21, 2001

Enough fiddling around, ball season is officially here now.

The reason is clear-not only are the kids playing, the adults began in Greenville Monday night.

Yep-move over kids, it's Mama and Daddy's turn.

Email newsletter signup

Although the new ball complexes are not yet open, the Women's softball and Men's Church softball leagues began play down at the fields of Dunbar Park.

And it is also obvious how the kids gain such talent-they get it honestly!

I watched more than one round projectile sail at supersonic speeds during the openers. Why, I saw one ball get knocked in the air along the third base line, and it sailed in a straight line until it hit the fence-of course it remained in fair territory the whole time, but gentlemen, get ready for this-your particular subspecies was shown up during this momentous occasion by a woman.

One who has obviously played the game a time or two.

And, believe it or not, the old mercury is once again going to plunge to the depths of tolerance!

Those educated guessers, the weather people, are all forecasting dropping temperatures to the neighborhood of freezing.

Maybe it will help me with those weeds that I have yet to bush hog with my lawn mower.

Naw, chances are better that it won't-but they are saying something about a dome of low or high-pressure, something like that.

One thing is for sure, though, the weathermen I have been watching on the boob tube (my Dad's term for TV) could use some antihistamines, or decongestants, or both!

Not very encouraging to those of us watching when the dude says cold, but it sounds like code.

The wind is picking up again, like it was in March-could be advantageous if it is at your back when you are standing on the plate, swinging that cylindrical impacting tool.

Or against you if you are pitching into it, so go figure.

Is the glass half-full or half-empty?

Anyway, back to the wind-it reminds me of when I was a kid.

Everyone had kites, and I wanted to fly one too.

Some looked like dragons, others like Batman.

My brother and I had Chinese box kites, made from Balsa wood and tissue paper.

Well, the "hawk" (wind) was good and strong, so I told Pop we were going to fly a kite (ever been told as a kid to do that?), and we set out to a place called Flick's Construction Co.

There was a big baseball field adjacent to the crane yard, and I knew it well, as my father took me there many times when flying model planes, but that was before the days of radio remote-controlled models. Pop built some of the most beautiful planes I have ever seen, and my favorite was a yellow and black "bi-plane" (two sets of wings).

Anyway, back to the kite.

Tommy (my brother) would do just about anything I asked him to do, so being the older of us, I figured it would be best for me to be in control of the situation.

We took that brightly-colored marvel of science, and stretched cord from it about 300 yards.

Tommy was so far away from me with the kite, I had to shout commands to him when I was ready for the trial launch.

The instructions that accompanied the kite said you needed a good 30-60 mph wind for a heavy box kite.

It must have been 100, once it cleared the height of those cranes in the adjacent yard!

Things looked really good up to that point, and Tommy had almost made it back to where I was struggling to hold the string on a stick.

But just as if it had been struck by a freight train, once the kite cleared those crane booms, it exploded!

Or at least, it looked like we figured it would if it had exploded, anyway.

The sticks were scattered at lightning speeds, and it took what seemed like seven forevers for us to gather all the pieces together.

We must have really looked pathetic when we brought them home, but I wasn't about to just say it broke, without having it there to prove it-see, we had a habit of giving our toys away, thinking we would get new ones.

Anyway, that was my first experience with the high winds of March, but we are in April now, and it feels like it did back then.

Well, I will be looking for you all to be supporting your favorite teams at the ballfields, and you will find me there, way out in Deep Left Field!