As it always does, the sun sets once again on Black History Month.
BHM is a yearly tradition that began in 1926 and has served our nation not only as a celebration of the cultural impact of notable African Americans, but also as a yearly reminder to Morgan Freeman of whom he still has to portray.
With the end of Black History Month comes the beginning of a month in which I celebrate my own personal history, appropriately called “Blackman History Month,” or, to others “March.”
Every “March,” or “BHM,” I take some time to reflect on my life thus far. I think about decisions I’ve made, opportunities I’ve passed up and formative experiences I’ve had that made me the person I am today.
In this column, we’re going to examine childhood athletics.
While many of us have not met in person, I’m sure you can assume by the general content of my column that I was never really into sports. That’s not to say that I don’t enjoy shooting the occasional hoop or playing beach volleyball; it’s just that I rarely connect with the idea of pushing my body to its physical limit for the sake of winning a game.
While there are sports that I do enjoy, there is one that I had never thoroughly liked playing and quit once it was socially acceptable. That sport is baseball.
Like many 5-year-old conformists, I was signed up for T-ball as soon as kindergarten rolled around, and you know what — it wasn’t half bad. In T-ball, the baseball sits still on a tee until the batter makes contact, no matter how long it takes and trust me, people are willing to wait.
Also, maybe I was just ahead of the curve, or maybe I was just very nervous as a young kid, but I took great comfort in the fact that at no time was another inexperienced child going to throw a hard ball in my general direction.
“Oh God, that’s dangerous,” (Mama Blackman, 1995).
My mild appreciation for the sport evaporated once Little League began a few years later. Let me tell you, one’s performance in T-ball is in no way a good indication of how one will do when the competition heats up.
There are a few reasons as to why I wasn’t cut out for the game. One is the absurd amount of downtime there is. I’d stand out in left field with way too much time on my hands to ponder some of life’s heavier issues. I’d think about things like life, death and how my sister’s dog allergy was the only thing stopping me from being part of the quintessential American family experience.
Instead, we got a guinea pig that I found dead in his cage on what became a very grim Super Bowl Sunday, which, come to think of it, is probably why I never really clicked with football either.
Another reason why I never loved the sport of baseball is the whole running thing. I abide by a very strict “no running unless being chased” policy, which has done me pretty well so far. In the end, I’m pretty sure that the only distinction I walked away with from Little League was the uniquely unbalanced ratio of “most protective equipment” to “least on-field achievements.”
So, we’ve kicked off Blackman History Month with a brief, yet informative look into my youthful attempt at sports. Tune in next time when I discuss the effects of childhood bullying and how I wasn’t wearing lipstick, I was clearly just enjoying a red popsicle; Derrick, you smug prick.