When I was 17 and I played softball (yes I totally know I shared this before) we had a tournament that we did extremely well in and it gave us a berth to the NSA World Series of Softball held in Kansas City. I had played softball with this travel team for much of my softball career.
the most adorable pin striped shirts that were the polyester blend with red polyester baseball pants. We had the thick white socks with red stirrups (the real deal not the included in sock kind). And bandanas.
Can you find me? We were a groovy looking bunch of ladies, I know. But with this excessive heat we are having it keeps bringing me back to that world series. It was a record producing heat wave back then too. The temp when we had one of our games was a record 116. I remember them having ambulances on standby at the diamonds knowing many girls would end up in them.
I suffered too from heat exhaustion. I remember pitching a few innings and feeling horribly nauseated and dizzy. I thought I would puke. I ended up on the ground with ice on me and cold wash clothes. I was more irritated that my coach made me lay down for an inning than I was worried about being ill.I remember all these other girls running around in sports bras and the baseball pants. ESPN was there filming and I was so scared my parents would see me in my sports bra and be mad if I did that so I opted to sweat.
But what is making me smile tonight is that this team introduced me to several things in my life and things that still make me smile and feel like a bad ass softball player.
- Grape Crush
- Highlights in my hair
- Always having to listen to Phil Collin’s “I can feel it in the air”to get up pumped up
- And who could forget our loud softball chant to the tune of 4 Non-Blondes “What’s up“
- Taco bell
- Loud and annoying softball chants that irritated everyone but come nothing close to what #1’s cheers say. Our cheers were about our team, not making fun of the other. Things have evolved.
- Mean catcher comments. I moonlighted as a catcher sometimes for this team. I am the type of person that comes across nice but have a tougher meaner side that no one sees coming. Well I was quite known for telling my 17 year old opponents what I knew about their boyfriends and it isn’t at all appropriate for this blog. Funny thing is it was a team effort. They devised it, I just said it.
- How to do hair fluffy and big. Most of these girls were cheerleaders and totally into hair and make up so that was a part of this team. The whole hair and make up scene has never really been mine. But they showed me. Funny thing is looking at this picture I think I look kind of funny and not at all trendy and fashionable like I thought I did back then.
- Bandanas and softball do not go together. We even wore helmets then so bandanas and running, hitting and throwing didn’t really work. But hey we looked awesome!
- It is okay to love people you once hated. Some of these girls were the mean girls. I never tolerated mean girls much. I bullied the bullies (remember that post from way back?) so I didn’t really give them a chance to be nice girls. I just assumed since they were mean to people I knew they were turds and treated them as such. In the end playing summer after summer and many of nights spent in hotel rooms up all night and freezing when a coach or chaperone would walk by I got to know these ladies. I did end up loving them and almost everyone of them taught me a valuable lesson.
If I had any of my top childhood/teenage memories that were the best my time with these girls and these coaches were probably second to memories with my family. They were my second family and my family from April till September of every summer. I wish I would have appreciated it more when I was in like I can now because I was one bad ass softball player back in the day.