Friday, July 23, 2010

Boys, Baseball, and Beetle Bugs

This summer, Thursday nights are baseball nights at the chapel.  Apparently there weren't enough players to field a team for the local church league, so we're just getting together to play for fun.  And have a potluck with roasted weenies.  Because we're all about potlucks

I had no idea how many "field of dreams" diamonds are scattered around the county!  Last week we played on a field surround by raspberries.  Juicy, ripe raspberries.

 The major league fields just don't have the scenery of these county fields.

And we just play.  Everybody gets to play that wants to play.  And if your muscles are feeling your age, you can have someone else run for you.  Which worked out great because that got me out of running, and Gunnar on base :D

 Though he tried mightily, Gunnar didn't manage to connect with the ball during the game :o(

Teams?  Last week it was the ethnic Dutch against the rest of us.  (You know, if your name starts with De, Van, Ver, or Vander).

 Tate is willing to play catcher, but he's very, very cautious.
Actually, he's more like a human backstop than a catcher :D

Keeping score?  Only important because when one team reaches ten points, the host goes and warms up the BBQ.

Who won?  The Chapel!  Yay - we all won!

So the boys were in heaven.  Kind of fun and funny to watch them, because they've never actually played baseball.  I know, I know, the "great American pastime" and all, but Kerry dislikes and avoids what he calls "projectile sports" (anything with a ball that might come flinging at you), and they've all gotten thoroughly into soccer.

Oh heavens, we tried T-Ball with Wyatt when he was in kindergarten.  It was a dead loss.  Way too much standing around and waiting for something to happen.  As opposed to soccer, where he could run, nonstop, for hours and hours.  But now that he's older, and has a bit more patience...

 In typical Wyatt fashion, he's a natural at the game.

But I digress... we had a great time with our church friends - both the Dutch and the rest of us - and then got a little bonus on the way home.  Had to stop for gas at the infamous Beer Cave and found this on the pavement.

I've never seen one like it before.  Tate quickly scooped it up and we wrapped in in paper to bring it home -all the while listening to it "scrunchaling around", as Tate described it -  and popped it into a jar for further observation.

Ya gotta love the internet, because this guy wasn't in any of our (many) bug books, but I found him in just a moment.  He's a long haired June beetle - also called a Ten Stripe Beetle, for obvious reasons. And he eats conifer needles, of which we have a gracious plenty.

And while I was poking around, reading about beetles, I was amazed to find that by a conservative estimate, about 350,000 species of beetles have been identified since 1758.  Do the math, people.  That's almost four a day.  That's a lot of bugs.  I also learned that beetles are the largest group of insects, (well, I think I already knew that), and that they make up one fifth of all living organisms, and one fourth of all animals.  Good grief.  That's a lot of beetles!

I was so intrigued by what I read that I put a book on reserve at the library, because it began like this:
Asked what could be inferred about the work of the Creator from a study of His works, the British scientist J. B. S. Haldane is reported to have replied, "an inordinate fondness for beetles."
In that case, I think Tate has something in common with God.


leah said...

The baseball game sounds absolutely delightful! We're holding off on doing t-ball for just that reason- there is a lot of "hurry up and wait." Matt isn't exactly great at waiting! We're definitely doing soccer next year, though- for both boys!

I hope you enjoy your beetle, and that he finds a great home among your pines. Boys definitely love the smaller creatures, lol!

The dB family said...

That is a cool beetle!! Maybe Tate will become an entymologist. Bub has thought about that field on occasion.

So, Ik zou dan van het Nederlandse team ...(So, I'd be on the Dutch tem then...) What is it with them Dutch people? They're everywhere ;o). Sounds like some fun evenings!