I was invited to try out for a professional baseball team, given the opportunity—despite my age and a few inconvenient physical ailments that accompany an aging body—by a baseball scout I had befriended on an airplane while on a flight.
I arrived at the training facility and suited up in an ill-fitting uniform (too tight in places, too loose in others) and proceeded to walk onto the field where I was greeted by the scout who introduced me to the team’s best pitcher, a lanky, acne-faced kid who looked like a little league reject I couldn't imagine could throw a ball that even reached home plate.
I grabbed a bat from a plastic drum and took my place behind home.
The kid pitched strike after strike—fast balls, change-ups, breaking balls—and I wasn’t able to even get a piece of his worst off-speed slider.
Frustration was mounting and I felt defeated. This went on for ten, maybe fifteen minutes and I could sense both the pitcher and scout’s growing impatience.
“I think we should call it a day,” shouted the scout from behind the protective net, “you gave it your best try.”
The young pitcher looked at the scout and said, “I think he’s just getting warmed up, give him a few minutes to take a break and have a sip of water.”
The pitcher walked over to me and said, “you’ll excuse me sir for saying, but why don’t you try hitting from the other side?
“Left handed?” I asked.
“Yes,” the kid replied with a serious look on his face that suggested he was not joking but actually wanted me to try batting from the opposite side.
I was right-handed, sturdily, and the thought of batting—or doing anything left handed—was simply absurd.
“Go ahead,” the pitcher said, “just give it a try.
So, I set up on the right side of home plate and the kid walked back up onto the mound, slapped the ball into his glove a couple of times, wound up and whipped a 95-mile-an-hour fastball down the pike which I—batting left handed for the first time in my life—smashed over the right field wall, 368 feet from where I stood, dismayed and elated.
Then I woke up.
*This dream was originally manifested on May 31, 2020.