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We Have Dirt

Story ID:8068
Written by:Michael Timothy Smith (bio, link, contact, other stories)
Story type:Story
Location:Caldwell ID USA
Year:2012
Person:Elizabeth
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It was mid-May. A cold breeze chilled us, even though the sun shone brightly. I opened
our folding chairs, glad I brought my cap to block the sun, so it wouldn’t ruin my view of the big
game. “This should be fun.” I said to Ginny.

“Look at them.” She laughed. “They’re just babies.

Our granddaughter Elizabeth waved at us from the dugout. “Hi, Poppa! Hi, Gingin!” It
was her first T-ball game. The excited grin on her face was infectious. Her pink uniform suited
her – the princess she dreams of being and is in our eyes.

The wind kicked up a cloud of dust from the infield, as the team took to the field for the
first inning. Some of them were no more than four feet tall. Like Ginny said, “They’re babies!”

A precious child stepped to the plate – her eyes wide with excitement and nerves. Parents
held their breath in anticipation. The coach placed the ball at the top of the tee, adjusted her
stance and pointed in the direction she needed to hit the ball. She held the bat next to her cheek.
Her little fingers gripped the bat – knuckles white. The kid on the mound pretended to throw a
ball. The little girl let rip with a brutal swing and hit the tee three inches below the ball, which
fell from the tee, rolled and stopped a foot from her feet.

The coach put the ball back on the tee. She swung and hit the tee below the ball again.
The ball popped from the tee and rolled behind the catcher.

I looked to the field. Elizabeth filled her baseball glove with dirt, poured it into her free
hand and giggled at the dust that flew off in the wind. Of the ten players on the field, six of them
bent low, playing in the dirt.

The child finally hit a ball into the field. The coaches yelled, “Get the ball!”

Ten eager faces looked up, “Time for after-game treats?”

“Get the ball!”

One boy grabbed it.

“Throw it to first!” The coach screamed. The boy threw it to home plate, as the batter
jumped on first base with a look of triumph and the parents cheered.

The next kid was focused. He took aim at the ball, practiced a swing and knocked the
ball from the tee. Coach put it back on and the kid knocked it over again. On his third try, he
hit the ball, which rolled pass the pitcher, who focused on an ant carting off a piece of
discarded hotdog.

Elizabeth now played shortstop. The batter hit the ball pass second base, where it rolled
into the outfield. “Throw it home!” the coached screamed.

The tiny human threw the ball. It rolled up behind Elizabeth’s feet, hit her heal and
came to s stop. “Elizabeth!” the coach, now hoarse, screamed.

She looked at him and smiled, “What?”

“Get the ball!”

She spun in a circle, saw the ball and threw it to first, as the opposing team sent a runner
home.

Baseball? Who cares?

Winning? Who cares?

They were having fun. Parents could learn a lot from them.

Look! We have dirt!

Michael T. Smith