7th Inning Stretch
from the Painter’s Notes…
I love listening to baseball games on the radio
and when I lived in Watertown Square, back in the 80’s,
I would sit on my fire escape overlooking the 7-eleven and the front steps of the catholic church beyond and tune in the Sox and work on the weekly crossword puzzle,
while watching the woman’s softball league practice in the park across the street.
When I was a much younger girl I played baseball with my friends. My brother Rob was a first class pitcher but he threw the ball way too hard for me. So I moved on down the line of brothers to Scott.
The two of us would play catch in the street out front of our home in Swarthmore for hours after school. I was learning Russian at the time and with each toss I would teach him a new word.
I still have my mitt, and the last time his son Neill visited the studio we got it out, and the old baseball which bears the signatures of friends along the way, and played catch in the yard.
My arm ached for days but the smile lingered in my heart for weeks.
That’s my old bat and glove in the painting. You can just make out the peace sign I taped onto it.
It was the 70’s after all.
But what is missing from the final composition is Gully whose nose was in my lap each time I ran from the camera to the chair to outrun the self-timer. Boy was she pining for those cracker jacks. I almost painted her in…but … the closest she’s ever come to a baseball was chewing off its cover…
or to ironing for that matter….
when, as a puppy, she would curl up in the wicker basket and wait for…
the 7th inning stretch.