Earlier in the summer, the Toronto branch of Haunting Club made with a few new members from the states. Among them was this freckled, tan, blonde, too-cute-to-be-straight, dripping-in-a-southern-drawl, tall cowboy version of my first husband. The new bloke’s name? Kanga.
Well, he’s not really named Kanga, but we call him that on account of his name is Joey, and he bounds about with excessive energy as Americans often do. (Whoever happens to be his girlfriend takes on the moniker Roo….)
Anyway, I immediately developed a crush, because of course I did. And while I was head over heels, I allowed Kanga to cajole me into playing the most absurdly boring game in the entire world.
Just to be clear, ghost baseball is not at all like vampyre baseball. There are no excessively powerful swings, no waiting for thunder claps to hide our strikes, no climbing of trees to catch balls.
There was however a pinched-faced, grumpy British bloke pretending to be an American for a while, and it wasn’t R-Patz, this time.
Now, imagine my dismay when I figured out the mechanics and hit a home run at our first…bout? Game? Go-round?
It’s really not even that hard. I mean, you just swing a bat until you hit a ball. If you have properly aligned your ghostly form so that it mirrors accurate alively musculature, (as opposed to presenting a good facade with an amorphous internal composition), then everything works as it would in life. Your shoulders torque, you connect with the little balled-up energy projectile, and it obeys the laws of physics, in accordance with the by-laws of ghost league baseball. No shenanigans.
To my horror, Kanga presented me with a “Toronto Taps” t-shirt—bearing a maple leaf so unfortunately dripping in syrup—thereby inducting me onto the team.
Hideous all around.
Excepting I do look cute in a baseball uniform with the ¾ sleeves and cap with my curls poking around it. Marc thinks I’m adorable, and loves watching me swing the bat.
So, I went with it. I joined the damn team.
I had to meet them all, of course. Marc and I were a little suspicious of the event—drinks at a sports bar on a Friday, and not a single other gay bloke on the team. What do you even wear to that?
But it went well. I fell back on my days as a boxer and had a few pints and a few laughs. Marc, who hates beer, bought top-shelf wine and bonded with two of the player’s wives—Himiko and Didi—because they all cried at Wonder Woman. Everyone was completely dear, and rather fun, to be honest.
By the end of the night, Marc and I realised this was actually about the best thing that’s ever happened to us, as far as team sports go.
All of our attempts to play sports together have ended in disaster. Either, one of us fails to comprehend the parameters of the sport—Marc can’t ice skate worth a damn, which is, it turns out, rather necessary for hockey; I refuse to get on a horse to play polo. Or Marc…um…over-participates. Like that time he tackled a bloke a bit too hard and accidentally scrambled his energy to the point that we were ejected from the rugby league.
This baseball thing, though…
Well, it’s still the worst game ever invented, but I’m good at it. Marc likes watching me be good at it, without any impulse on his part to join in. Rather like when I watch him race chariots. And that works for us.
He gets to be the rich husband who shows up with a jug of margaritas and does the player’s wives nails while he shouts encouragements and makes thumbs up and down motions. I get to strut around looking hot for him and then smash pints with cute bros.
Wins all around.
There was a bit of a kerfuffle when Marc tried to leave the house in two extra gold chains, a t-shirt so tight it could be a tourniquet, and a pair of trophy-husband, bright-white jeans, which I burned in the kitchen fireplace.
[He thought it was hilarious. He happily proclaimed he would wear a toga instead, like he was attending a gladiatorial battle, adorned with all the things he’d stolen from Egypt and Gaul. ‘I am wear thing I am steal from Eeeeegypt. I am wear thing I am steal from Gaaaaul, I am wear all of thing I am steal.’ ]
[Consequent that conversation, I asked if the ring he gave me for our engagement was stolen. ‘I am non know where Uncle Cato is get ring. Is ruby, babe, just enjoy have ruby.’]
[Consequent both conversations, Marc has promised me he doesn’t plunder things anymore, and that he was actually more respectful of conquered souls than his devil-may-care attitude would imply.]
I’m also still growing used to the appalling method of Canadian-American celebration. I hit a tri-run-thing and everyone shouted at me. It was alarming. Very ‘FUCK YEAH YOU HIT THAT BALL’ and less ‘good show chap’.
Oh, and I called a practise a ‘rehearsal’ once, so now that’s a thing…
But yes, overall, a good time.