One advantage of waking up often during the night is that I remember dreams. There are certain subjects that recur.
One is baseball (and that's not a euphemism for "getting to second base.") Once a month or so I return to the finely mowed diamond for an out or an inning. It's odd for two reasons: in my dreams I am almost always fielding, yet in real life batting was my strong suit, and secondly, my childhood baseball diamond was more hard baked dirt parking lot than lush fairway.
Regardless, I think for me at least dreams are a lot about regret. In the case of me and baseball, as is so often the case, I didn't miss what I had until it was gone. I played in baseball leagues from the age of 7 until high school. But even then I dropped out before junior year. I was too busy with existential midlife crises to be bothered with sports.
The last time I played was probably 10 years ago when I met a friend at his softball practice and helped shag fly balls. It was astounding how a skill that had once been mindlessly second nature had become impossible from lack of practice. At the time I had thoughts of trying to join his team, but they weren't looking, and I didn't care enough to pursue it further.
To be fair, that was the last time I played on a real field. I have since played a form of whiffle ball several times. Every year or two my friend Michael invites his best buddies to his grandparents' cabin for Bacon Weekend (or as I call it, "Bakin' Weekend" since I don't eat pigs.) One of the traditions is the whiffle ball game.
The rules are simple and the same every time. There's no running (we're far too old for that nonsense.) The type of hit depends on how far the ball goes, from inside the baseline for an out to over the house for a home run. The final rule is that every inning one team or the other gets to make a new rule. It's like Fluxx baseball.
I participate in this game to a surprising degree. For batting, I kneel left-handed, and I'm sometimes not the worst batter. Fielding is harder since I can't move side to side or run or, for that matter, even walk much in the thick sand. But when the ball does fly within reach of my left hand, I'm known to snatch it out of the air, a very gratifying experience.
I've enjoyed these games and dreamt about baseball enough that I've sought out wheelchair baseball. Unfortunately, there's very little, and none in the Milwaukee area. So for the time being at least playing will remain just a dream.
Which brings me back to my initial point. There are several topics that I have recurring dreams about. Baseball is just one of them. I hadn't intended for this post to be consumed by it, but the rest will have to wait for another post. No regrets though. I don't want to start dreaming about blogging.