Sunday, May 22, 2011
Got a favorite number? Do you see it a lot? Are you superstitious about it? Every time I frequent this restaurant in the city and have to visit the restroom, this 9 pops out at me. Now if you grew up in New England (except for southern Connecticut... what's wrong with them?) in the 40s and 50s and loved the grand ol' game, the number 9 meant only one thing... Teddy Ballgame! Mr. Theodore Samuel "Ted" Williams (August 30, 1918 – July 5, 2002). He had a couple of other nicknames like "The Kid", "The Splendid Splinter", "The Greatest Hitter Who Ever Lived", but "Teddy Ballgame" was the one I loved. He played his entire, 21 year professional baseball career with the Boston Red Sox. Late nights in my bedroom with a West coast game on, I'd practice over and over, trying hard to perfect that most graceful left-handed swing. Early spring mornings before school, at night or in summer rain showers, you'd find me in the batters box of our homemade back diamond, just swinging away from the left side. During games, it didn't help me much. I always batted right... but I could dream! Oh, my favorite number? I've got this thing about 22 now. I just like the look of the repeating 2s. Go figure.