Sunday, August 9, 2009

Camilla Gibb Plays Softball At Battery Park

With nothing else to do yesterday--no reading, no shopping--I went to watch Camilla Gibb play softball. She plays on a team called the Raiders--I don't know if that has any significance--and the team plays most Saturdays and sometimes on Tuesday nights. I know this because a friend of mine named Marc Berger put together the team, and is constantly bitching to me about how bad Gibb is at baseball.

"So why let her play?" I asked him.

"She paid."

"Is that all?"

"Yeah. It's a rec. league. What can I do, tell her to fuck off and go swimming?"

"Can I play?"

"The team's full."

So I went down to Battery Park, bought a Crunchie chocolate bar and some Trident gum along the way, and settled down to watch the Raiders play an afternoon game.

Gibb does, in fact, suck at softball. She rotated around the infield on defense, and hit eleventh (out of twelve). The Raiders lost 34-21. For a normal softball team, that'd be a lot of runs. But when you can't throw or field, shit happens. It was probably the most poorly played game that I've ever seen, and even on a blank slate of a Saturday afternoon, I won't be going back.

Let me recap Gibb's at bats:

1: Strikes out looking.

2: Grounds out to the pitcher after swinging the bat with her hips. The coach had to tell her that you're better off using your shoulders and arms. Gibb was concerned about her manicure. Yeah...If she'd actually had one in the last fifteen years, that'd be something to worry about. Given that her 'nails look like they were lifted off the corpse of professional shit scraper, there was no danger of aesthetic harm.

3: Grounds out to the pitcher. This time the ball actually hit her hand and rolled to the mound. She winced, but did not cry. Gibb is famously stoic. When a good friend died, she once commented that her Tori Amos tickets wouldn't go to waste.

4: Strikes out swinging. A strike out is rare in softball, but, like I said, she's terrible.

In the field Gibb was even worse. A ball was hit to her at third base, and, as she jumped out of the way, it hit her shoe and died. She picked it up, tossed it in the direction of first base, and watched as the ball sailed about four feet before settling on the infield gravel. Since first base was about forty-five feet from third, this was not a good outcome.

Another grounder bounced up and hit the brim of her hat. She screamed and kicked it toward second base.

After the game I asked her what she's working on now, and she said a novel about a young woman who travels to BC in order to plant trees. Fuck, I can't wait for that to hit the shelves.

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