Monday, February 23, 2009

New Season Resolutions

Before the season began I resolved to do a couple things differently. I want to share those things here on the blog - just to remind myself, not to preach.

First, I resolve to relax more and let the game come to me. As Yogi Berra said, "You can observe a lot just by watchin'." I will continue to remind myself of the situation, my responsibilities, and to anticipate the play. However, I will go through this mental checklist before the pitch. Once the pitcher is ready I want to clear my mind and observe things by watchin'. I'm not going to eye-ball the pitcher's feet, sneak glances at the firstbaseman to see if he may cause an obstruction, or concern myself with any number of small matters that happen once out of two hundred times and are likely not seen by anyone else at the park. I can see these things just fine if I just relax and let the game happen.

Second, I resolve to let the fans be fans, coaches be coaches, and players be players. I had an issue last year during a high school softball game that made me really stop and think about the different roles at the ballpark. The fans of the offensive team didn't like my low strike call and began complaining after the call. Finally, I turned to the coach and said, "Coach! That's enough of the hooting! No more hooting!" The coach, without missing a beat, replied, "But blue, we're the Owls!" We all broke up laughing, but it reminded me that just as owls must hoot, fans must complain. So let 'em. Only when the game is disrupted should you ask game management to take action. Likewise coaches need to voice their concerns for a variety of reasons. Let 'em. Players are competitive, so let them be competitive. When a player or coach acts inappropriately, address the issue with the coach - professionally and discretely, if possible. Focus too much on nippin' it in the bud and you'll end up acting like Barney Fife.

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