It feels good to be blogging again, on a new platform — and in a new year of sorts, since I celebrated my birthday two days ago.
The long winter we had in D.C. finally seems to be fading (although it could snow this Friday — ugh!), and Easter — and baseball — are just a couple of weeks away.
There is hope in the air!
Much to the chagrin of some family members and friends, I’ve added the Nationals to my lifelong Orioles fandom over the past couple of years that I’ve lived in the DMV (local-speak for “D.C., Maryland and Virginia”). I figured, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do,” especially now that they have Max Scherzer! (Apologies to my college friends who root for the Tigers.) And as great as the Oriole Bird is, how can you not love the Racing Presidents? (Teddy’s my favorite.)
But, I’ve also always kept an eye out for interesting players on other teams. One I heard of recently is Daniel Norris, a pitcher for the Toronto Blue Jays who enjoys camping in a Volkswagen van during spring training and the off-season. He does so out of a desire to live simply and care for the earth, painting a stark contrast to the lifestyles of his teammates, as Eli Saslow writes:
On the morning in 2011 when his $2 million signing bonus finally cleared, Norris was in Florida with the rest of the Blue Jays’ new signees. All of their bonuses had been deposited on the same day, and one of the players suggested they drive to a Tampa mall. They shopped for three hours, and by the time the spree finally ended they could barely fit their haul back into the car. Most players had spent $10,000 or more on laptops, jewelry and headphones. Norris returned with only a henley T-shirt from Converse, bought on sale for $14. It’s been a fixture of his wardrobe ever since.
The article and Norris’ Twitter account hint at his spiritual beliefs, and I’d love to read more about them in the future — as well as see him succeed while being true to himself.
And, should the O’s and Nats meet in the World Series — as I hoped they would last year — my first loyalty will always be to the black and orange. But, I’m also happy to see the Nationals still in town 10 years after they moved here from Montreal — and doing very well besides.