The End of a Season

Sitting at my computer this morning, my windows are open, it’s 64° outside, and I’m sipping my favorite autumn drink (hot chai). It’s a bittersweet moment for me. Fall brings a rich, crispness to the air. It brings pumpkin everything (which I heartily applaud), a whole new wardrobe of warmer clothes, and beautiful colors. In fact, one of my favorite autumnal quotes is from the "James Dean of philosophy" Albert Camus: "Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower." But it also means the end of so many things that I value much more than the treasures of autumn.

I’m a warm weather man. I love the sunshine, blue skies, and warm temperatures. I could easily make my home in a tropical climate. My favorite places I’ve ever lived or visited are all near or below the 30th parallel. More importantly—at least for me—is that warm weather returns me to one of my oldest and dearest loves: baseball.

As a kid, I ate, slept, and breathed baseball. When I wasn’t playing or practicing Little League ball, I was playing in the PBL (Plastic Ball League) I started with some friends. Or I was watching a game on TV or listening on the radio. I read exactly two sections of the newspaper: the comics and the sports section. I studied baseball stats as if there would be an exam. I read baseball biographies of my favorite players. I practiced throwing and catching day in and day out by bouncing a tennis ball off a concrete wall. I’ve never lost that love for baseball. And when you grow up in the deep south, baseball is strictly a warm weather sport.

Technically, summer ended two weeks ago. But for me—and I dare say for many baseball fans—summer ends when your team plays their final game of the season. That game was last night for me and my fellow Atlanta Braves fans. It was a good season, 96 wins. That’s pretty phenomenal for a team that pundits wouldn’t even give the time of day until it was clear they were a lock for the postseason.

So, yes, this beautiful autumn morning is bittersweet for me. Somewhere outside my window, a crow is singing its song. Symbolic, really, that—for now—something special has ended. So I’ll put away my summer clothes and baseball paraphernalia and focus on the pleasures of autumn and winter, all the while eagerly awaiting the rebirth of warmer weather and baseball.

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About Eric Wilbanks

Brand strategist. Wordsmith. Change architect. Training specialist. DiSC Certified. Family guy (hot wife and 4 cool kids). Love my Bible, guitars, baseball, and MMA.


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