Life in General

Spent the morning at a car dealership where we ended up buying Red’s van.  Our friend worked it out so that the dealer did all of the paperwork for free, and she ends up getting a tax break that she otherwise would not get selling the van to us as a private party.  She didn’t have to, but she got up early this morning and had the oil changed, and everything detailed.  It’s far too nice of a car to haul our kids.  We’ll have it good and trashed up in three days.

We’re looking into donating our Ford to our mechanic if he can find anyone who needs it and is willing to put the work into it to pass inspection.  If he doesn’t want it, we know of some others who might take it – otherwise, its to the junk yard.

We spent yesterday at my brother-in-laws business for a Mother’s Day picnic.  He runs a mini-golf, batting cage gig north of Selinsgrove.  Normally I’m bored out of my skull at these things, but I talked my son into taking his kit along so he could work on his batting.  He has been in a slump for the past two seasons and I could not get him to really work on it.  This spring I noticed that when he hit the ball, it would really hurt his hands.  I started thinking that perhaps that was effecting his timing and power.  So yesterday we grabbed an old wooden bat and started in the slow pitch softball.  He nails a few and his hands feel great.  Then we move up to fast pitch softball, then 50mph baseball, then finally to 60mph.  He ends up hitting .1000.

It was the bats.  The new ones are so light that the barrels taper to a very narrow shaft which transfer all the impact to the hands.  We ended up re-doing his whole batting bag.  First, we found an old aluminum club that is heavier, but has a wide handle with a rubber sleeve.  It cleaned up nicely and will be his primary bat.  Then, I took his newest and lightest bat, and double wrapped handlebar tape around the shaft.  One layer of cork and one layer of used Bontrager gel tape leftover from various builds – quite spongy and rather spiffy looking.  Finally, we borrowed the wooden bat for just practices.

Yesterday was the first I have seen him excited about batting in a few years.  It was great to see his confidence build throughout the afternoon as he hit close to 200 pitches.  His hands and shoulders were aching last night, but he was still talking about it at bedtime.  He has a game tonight, and I’m really hoping he will do well.  He is an awesome defensive player, and if he can get his batting up to par, it will definitely get him some attention.  I am surprised at how little true batting instruction has been available to these kids in Little League.  They basically just put them in the cage and provide random, and often inconsistent, advice.  My brother-in-law, to his credit, really knows the mechanics of it all and provides some useful instruction.

This is my last week for soccer, and I’m planning for a ride tomorrow night.  My legs were stiff yesterday after Saturday night’s demi-criterium around the neighborhood when I rode to church.  It’s time to get back into shape!

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