What I really needed was a reason to get up and hit the gym. A better reason. My agent would advise me to keep training as if I had a job. Coaches would say a prepared man creates his own luck. But my heart, that silly, skittish, vessel of illogic kept telling that if another job in baseball didn’t come around, it might not be such a bad thing.
I shook the notion from my head, pushed back from the table and got up. I had to keep moving. I couldn’t let such a thought take root. Nine years I’ve been playing this game professionally. Thirteen if you count college. Seventeen if you add high school, and God knows how many when you mix in all the odd leagues before that. Nine years of paid ball may not seem like a long career, but considering I’ve been doing it ever spring summer and fall since age six, it sure feels long. All I’ve ever done is the game of baseball, and anything I’ve ever done that wasn’t the game was done to make sure I could keep playing it. I was a ball player, pure and simple.
“You going to the gym, babe?” Asked Bonnie from her seat across the table. She didn’t look up from the children’s furniture catalogue she’d been eyeing all breakfast when she asked.
“Yeah, I guess I am. Callouses on my hands are starting to thin out.” I said.
“Uh-oh.” Said Bonnie, turning a page.
“You could come with me.”
“I’m okay here. Thank you though.”
I nodded, and grabbed my coat. “Why are we getting catalogues for kids furniture?” I asked.
“Think about it.” She said.
I stopped. “Is there something you need to tell me?”
“Nothing for me to tell you other than what you already know.”
“That I want to make a baby with you sooner than later.”
I started moving again. “As long as there is still an option for later.”
“You always say that.” She smiled and went back to her catalogue.
“I know you want to have kids, but I’d like to have a job and know how we’re going to pay for this kid you’re buying furniture for first.”
“I know, honey. I know. I’m just day dreaming is all.”
“Well, if you don’t mind, day dream a little less overtly.”
“I’m sorry, honey,” said Bonnie. She curtly shut up the magazine and placed it on her lap, under the table and out of sight. “Kiss me before you go.” She puckered and closed her eyes and waited at the table, primed for kissing until I huffed and plodded obediently over to her and gave her one.
“I’ll be back in bit.”
“I love you.”
“Love you too.”
I walked out the door and shut it tight behind and went down the steps, through the snow to the garage. Before I opened the door of my car I stopped and looked back at the house, through kitchen window at Bonnie, turning the pages of her catalogue again. It wouldn’t be so bad, said my heart, that silly, stupid, illogical thing. No, it probably wouldn’t be.
I opened the door, got in the car, and left.