Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Home (01/09/06)
TITLE: Bleu Cheese on the Side
By Georgiana Daniels
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ADD TO MY FAVORITES
On tonight’s menu is buffalo wings with bleu cheese, my favorite. There’s a commotion going on as the game is about to start, and it’s almost loud enough to distract me from my wings, but not quite. Out of the commotion walks my husband, headed toward me with purpose. I stuff the last of the wings into my mouth, just in case he wanted some.
“Honey, we’re short a player. I’m drafting you.” His eyes plead with me, and I almost consider doing it. “After you finish chewing, of course.”
I swallow in one big lump. “I can’t. I don’t know how. Isn’t it a men’s league?”
“Doesn’t matter, they’ll make an exception.” He leans in close, “We really need you.” I try to remember if “obey” was part of our wedding vows.
The rest of the team looks at me expectantly. The crowd is sparse, or surely they wouldn’t pick me. No one ever picked me for anything sports related. Last one to be picked in gym? Me.
My tummy gurgles, and I’m not sure if it’s from the food, or from nerves. The game gets underway, and our team is first at bat. I’m not first up, but close enough. I haven’t done this since junior high, and I stank at it then too. It’s my turn to bat.
The pitcher, Bernie, throws the ball. I close my eyes and swing with all of my strength.
“Strike!” the umpire shouts behind me. Thanks.
Bernie crouches and prepares to throw again. This time I vow to keep my eyes open.
Help me Lord, I don’t want to look foolish!
I grip the bat as the pitcher throws the ball. It makes a beautiful arc in the air, and as it races back to earth, I swing.
I don’t realize that I’ve made a connection until I hear my husband yell, “Run!” I take off for first base and get there with time to spare. Don’t ask me how. I don’t think my husband has ever seen me run. I probably look dumb. But he is a gift from God, because when I look up he’s jumping up and down and swinging his hat around and yelling a lot. It takes me a moment to hear him shout, “Keep going!”
It feels like a bad dream, the kind where no matter how hard you try you can’t run fast. Except it’s not a dream; I really can’t run fast. But like I said, God must be on our side, because I make it all the way to third base.
The next batter up looks like a pro, and I’m not sure why he didn’t go ahead of me in the first place. He’s chomping hard on his gum, and I know he means business. The pressure is on me to score, but this Bible Boy looks like he’ll pass me up in an instant.
He swings, and the ball goes flying straight toward Bernie. My husband is yelling at me to run, the rest of the Bible Boys are cheering, and about this time I’m wishing I was still eating my wings.
I go as fast as I can, which isn’t saying much, but it looks like now that Bernie has
gotten a hold of the ball, he’s coming toward me. I feel my cheeks jiggle as I run, and I hope I don’t look as bad as I think I do. I dive to the ground, just like I’ve seen them do on TV. Dirt flies everywhere, and I feel the rocks scraping my belly as I slide. My husband cheers. Like I said, God must be on our side, because when the dust cloud settles I look up at the umpire and see that I’m home….safe.
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