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The Families

Chapter 4: The Families

The Central Park Softball LeaguesA BLOG SERIES BY ALEC RILL

Peter has been bringing his son to watch the games since he was a baby

Are the players ready to play? The ballpark fields are groomed, the players have gone through their physical and mental preparation, and the team is ready and psyched.

So, Let’s Play Ball! Well, not so fast. What else do the players need to give it their best? We are social animals and our ideal team needs their social connections. They need their families and friends.

And the families and friends are there; they are always there! They provide the social bond and the loving encouragement, and they show the players that whether they win or lose, they are loved. 

Let’s meet some of them.

Marlene is no newbie to the park or the softball leagues. She is a veteran family spectator. She has known the players since college, and they are her “family.” She comes to see her family play every chance she gets.

She is competitive and enjoys “watching people doing something they don’t have to do!” It helps her, at work and in her daily life; watching people enjoy what they do, just for fun, helps her remember what’s important in life. 

As a woman, she especially likes to watch men interacting without their actions being influenced by having a woman around. She feels that she understands men better.

Marlene cheering her family, which is everyone on the team

Remember Mallgely? 

She is the soon-to-be wife of the pitcher of the Kings, the team that won the 2023 season of the Sunday League.

Every Sunday since before she can remember, they shlep from New Jersey to the Heckscher fields in Central Park, he to pitch and she to watch and cheer.

The players have become a family; they go to parties, baby showers and, now, they will go to their wedding. As a good pitcher, he pitched himself to her after the last game, “Marry me and I’ll be on your team for life.”

Mallgely said YES!

And what a great moment for the pitcher to propose (with his knee on the home plate). Did she accept?  How could she not, he is the King and he won!

Daughter showering Dad with unconditional love and encouragement

It’s never too early to watch Daddy play

A future movie producer documenting Dad’s game

Bringing the puppy to watch the game, and teaching him to catch

Ultimately, watching is a family affair

And family means everybody! Including the dolls

Alec Rill

I am a street photographer documenting the world as I see it through my camera. I try to show the range of human emotions wherever I go, whether it is to far away places or across the street.

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