So, the timing of "Baseball is my Muse" becoming a realized vision has very much to do with the coronavirus/COVID-19 outbreak. I have found that the thing that I miss the most about "normal" life is baseball (duh). Subsequently, baseball is the one thing getting me through the madness of current affairs. Therefore, I thought it fitting that my first entry into this virtual journal should be about how I'm coping in the alternate universe without baseball we have found ourselves in.
In the early days of quarantine, I found myself seeking out baseball documentaries. I had started the Ken Burns Baseball series just before the pandemic outbreak and completed it very shortly into being stuck at home. I'm certainly glad I was finally able to give Mr. Burns's documentary a watch and have recently been considering starting it over and watching it through again. I've rewatched "The Battered Bastards of Baseball", "Fastball", "No-No: A Dockumentary", and "Jordan Rides the Bus", among others. Battered Bastards is one of my absolute favorites. The story of Bing Russell and the Portland Mavericks is inspiring to say the least, and the film tells said story really, really well.
After I couldn't find access (well, easy access) to any other baseball docs, I switched my efforts to fictional baseball films. "Bull Durham", "Field of Dreams", "Major League", "Major League 2", and "For Love of the Game" have all been on my TV screen the last month or so, some more than once. Another fictional work that is baseball related I would recommend is the IFC TV series, "Brockmire". It tells the story of a broken, humiliated major-league broadcaster's return to America and to the game he loves. Hank Azaria is beyond believable and the storytelling is fantastic, but be forewarned, it's not a program you can watch with the kids (haha)!
Something else I've been doing to pass the time and make life seem less dreary and dark during this time has been baseball card collecting. It has made the days go by with a little less darkness and a more light. In addition, it has kept me from staring at a screen all day, which as we all know can't be good for the eyes. I've found a small online community of traders and collectors, and that has been really nice as well. Who would've thought 6 weeks ago that human connection would be something we'd be so starved for?
I miss baseball. Alot. So much so that I have an alarm set for 6am tomorrow so I can try to catch a CPBL game from Taiwan. I miss watching my beloved Dodgers on TV. I miss going to the ballpark for minor league fun and shenanigans, but I have been doing what I can to remember what baseball means to me and that we will have it again someday. This is all temporary, I truly believe that. A day will come when we'll all be able to once again pack a bag, throw it in the car, and venture to a random ballpark in a random town, eat a hot dog, drink a beer, and watch the greatest game on Earth. Who knows? Maybe this time away will make the next ballpark adventure that much sweeter!
I would love to know how you are coping without baseball! Let me know in the comments or via Twitter or E-mail!