Aa-Ooo! I found local batting cages! And really nice batting cages, too. In this industrial park about 20 miles south of me. I found the place without too much trouble, gave them ten bucks for twelve tokens, and after waiting for some kids to vacate, spent the next hour hitting balls.
It was so cool. Having the balls come at me one after the other allowed me to concentrate on different aspects of my swing. As it was the middle of the day on a Wednesday, I practically had the whole place to myself. But then, this other guy showed up. I was feeling pretty flagged and so we alternated in use of the cage. He was a shaggy guy, wearing a tshirt and cut-off jeans spattered with spackling. Luckily, he wasn't a whole lot better than me, and he gave me some pointers, such as, "don't go after the ball, just sit back and let it come to you. By my last round of eightteen balls, only two got by me, and had they been sent my way by an actual pitcher as opposed to a machine, I wouldn't have swung on them. (And I've got a good eye for that.)
Sweaty and sore, I called it a day. A great workout for only $16, all things considered.
And I headed for Starbucks in Doylestown.
I enjoyed a latté and read through the Times, and as I was preparing to leave, what to my wondering eyes should appear but a new-to-me member of the local constabulary. And damn! This guy--solid, beefy, sporting a high-n-tight--was right out of something from Stationhouse Videos. And whaddya know! I had an excuse to talk to him!
Y'see, my father gets all of these solicitations from these alleged police associations, asking for $20 in return for which they'll provide you with a nice sticker to ugly up your ride. Back in NYC, several shakedown artists worked this ploy, until the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association made it known that money given to these groups did not, in fact, benefit police officers in any way. And I wanted to ask him if any of them were legit. He greeted me with a "Hiya, Buddy!" and I asked him if he had a second for a question. It turned out he was actually on a call, taking care of a miscreant youth who was using the bathroom of Starbucks without having earned that privilege with the purchase of a Starbucks beverage. After said miscreant youth was hauled off to get locked up (I'm totally serious, they take that reeeeally serious here in Doylestown), this smokin' slab of man-meat in blue serge said, "I'm sorry, now what was your question?"
I asked, and he answered. I didn't hear a thing he said, I was way too busy drinking him in with my eyes. Quite the sight to behold. My appreciative (and probably pretty obvious) eye-balling of this police officer screeched to a halt when I got to his little brass name badge. It read, "HOTHAM."
Now, possibly he pronounces that to rhyme with "gotham," or even to rhyme with "bottom," but of course, what went careening around in my cerebral cortex was "Hot Ham."
So lost was I in reverie that without my being aware of it, the words, "You sure are!" came out of my mouth.
"'Scuse me?" he asked, more perplexed than beligerent.
"You've sure been helpful," I offered.
And by the way, I got to watch him put the handcuffs on the youthful miscreant. That was pretty sweet. Although probably not for the youthful miscreant. (I wonder if he ever got a chance to use the bathroom or if he still had to piss. And how bad he had to piss.) And I couldn't help thinking how nice it would be to have the opportunity to cuff Officer Hot Ham. And ball gag him. And put his nightstick way up his hole.
Hot Ham. And with Easter coming up, I have quite the taste for ham.
Just what is involved
in you pledge to protect and
to serve, Officer?