Sunday, February 17, 2013

Post NCIS Retirement

Once retired and settled into the new digs in Coconut Creek I began enjoying my new found freedom with nothing but time on my hands.  After approximately 30 years in a law enforcement career it was time for a little bit of a rest.  With some money in the bank from the sale of my home in Hawaii, things were fairly comfortable financially for a while.  I had thoughts of using this time to recharge my batteries before embarking on another employment venture.  In the meantime, I scoured Craigslist for groups to join and found a listing that was soliciting players for the Sunshine Senior Softball league in Pompano Beach.  Having played organized baseball from little league through the college level and a men's league in Staten Island, NY, and then various slow, medium, and fast pitch softball leagues for the better part of my adult life, I thought I'd give it a try.  I answered the ad and was contacted by the league coordinator, Bart Grillo.  Bart, at the time of the call, was 82 years old.  I asked him if he was still playing and he replied that he had quit a long time ago - which I later learned was only two years prior.   Yes, Bart was still playing softball at the age of 80.

At the time, I was just turning 55, the minimum age of eligibility to play in this senior league.  I played a half season with a partial tear of the rotator cuff in my left shoulder, but a backhanded play to snare a ground ball in the hole at shortstop would be the last play of my sandlot career.  I felt an all too familiar pop and instantly knew that I had torn my right hamstring.  This injury for all practical purposes finally drove home the reality that my brain was writing checks my body was no longer able to cash.  Time healed my torn hamstring and arthroscopic surgery repaired my rotator cuff but even my undying love for the game was not enough to tempt me to risk further injury.  It is common knowledge that the way a human body ages is very much connected to one's genes.  Unfortunately for me, Father Time was forbidding me from playing again.

Well, thank goodness for the game of golf.


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