Baseball is on the way back, a new season is just around the corner and already the questions of who are the better team in the Bay Area are circling. Oakland may have Manny but the Giants have a pitching staff that a lot of teams only dream of.
I’ve been constantly watching and cheering for the San Francisco Giants for about ten years now, maybe more. Sleepless nights and only being able to read so many books in a week, led me to look for something else to do when the rest of the world was asleep. Ok, the world where I was, a GMT time zone.
4 am can be a lonely place, this was before a constant Facebook or Twitter stream. MySpace was a place cluttered with rock bands claiming to be the next big thing, not an environment to unwind in, as wannabe web designers took leaves out of geocities’ book, splattering profiles with neon flashing signs. Watching this slow paced game, on a free TV channel, that looked a bit like rounders, was perfect for your insomniac friend. I didn’t think I’d fall in love with the game though.
San Francisco has always tugged at my heart strings so there was no question as to what team to support. I didn’t know if they were winners, losers the good guys or the bad guys. I had someone to root for.
Over the following years, the season always marked the return of better weather, heading towards the Summer. Since I went back to college, it became a flag, a marker, a guide that the end of one college year was approaching and by the end of the regular season, you’d be heading back to college. Just as a baseball team wanted to be at the top of their division to reach the playoffs and go further, this acted like a benchmark of how I spend my Summer, what I did, if I had achieved goals I had set for myself. They mightn’t be huge goals, learn how a new computer programme worked or something but it was a guideline for me.
So here I am, final year, writing my thesis which is due in nine weeks, yes, nine weeks. By that stage the baseball season proper, will be four weeks old. This year, the goals are slightly different. Between now and the end of the regular season, a lot of decisions need to be made. Hard decisions.
As a mature student, going back to college was a bit daunting to start with. What if I was a bit thick? Some of the guys in my class were young enough to be my kids, would I fit in ? Once I started though, they faded away. Now, it’s will I get a job, is my experience enough ? Am I still going to be told I’m ‘over experienced for the position’?.
You only get one shot at this life thing, you’ve got to grab it, shake it and fling it around a bit. I’ve had enough of playing it safe. I’ve had enough of listening to the news every day and hearing more bad news, I don’t watch the news any more. If there was ever a time, to be a daredevil, try something out, now is it. That may mean leaving Ireland, to go where? That would be down to Green Cards, job prospects (you still have to pay the rent) and language barriers. That might rule out China so but leaves a lot of French speaking territories up for discussion.
The World Series should be decided the same week as my graduation. It takes 162 games to figure out who goes to the postseason. You can’t always leave fate in the hands of others, ‘Oh maybe someone will offer me a job’, maybe they will. Maybe I get offered the dream job I’ve always wanted, right here on my door step. There are no fairytales though. I don’t want to get caught up in negativity and be surrounded by it. I went back to college, funded totally by myself (and my lovely partner) to better myself. I never did a degree, I wanted one. But its up to each and every one of us. You make your own luck, you get out, get noticed, maybe here, maybe somewhere else. Who knows? There’s time left, I have some tough decisions ahead but it’s up to me to build my Field of Dreams.