Sometimes families can be difficult. Sometimes difficult is an understatement! Personality conflicts and generation gaps are just a few of the problems that arise within a family dynamic. There are things we encounter in life that overcome those family quarrels and create a bond strong enough to endure the dysfunction. Sometimes these bonds between family members are so strong and also subtle enough that the people involved don’t even realize they were created at the time. Today’s book shows how it happens when you are not even paying attention.
By:Terry Pluto 1999-Gray & Co Publishers
I really should go into most books with no expectations, because as we have seen in my previous posts a lot of these books are not what I expected. This book is no exception. I assumed that this was going to be a book about the high and low points of the Cleveland Indians. Happily I can say it was so much more. It was the authors personal look back at what the Indians meant to him and his own Dad.
Terry Pluto, who is a life-long Cleveland Indians fan, highlights both the highs and lows of the Tribe history. Honestly they were the same highs and lows that everyone associates with the Indians, so you were not getting much new information there. What made the book more interesting for me was the author discusses how he and his Father had a relationship formed around the Indians.
Pluto gives you a glimpse into his own world and personal memories of growing up of the Tribe. Special times with his Dad also involving the Tribe are highlighted throughout the book. The reflections on his childhood and adult life involving his father seem to have been precipitated by a serious stroke his Father had several years before his death. It shows that even though communication channels had been broken, the Indians still afforded an avenue to connect. The book also allowed the author to reflect on his relationship as a whole with his Father and the short-comings on both their parts throughout their lives.
As stated above the book was much more than expected and in the end made me reflect on my own relationship with my Father. It made me look back at the relationship I have had through the years with my own Dad. I had realized that through the years whatever point in life we were at individually, the Phillies always brought us back to the same point, and be able to communicate. From taking me to my first game, the 1977 NLCS at Veterans Stadium to this very day, it has been the strongest common ground. Baseball as a whole has always been our center to build from. Now 30 plus years later I appreciate all the times playing catch after a hard days work. I now realize that he probably didn’t feel like doing it, but did because he loved me. Fathers sometimes have a funny way of showing their kids they love them, but in the end you know they do.
Baseball fans should really enjoy this book. It really helps you remember what make the game of baseball so special to so many people. Even if you hate the Indians you should still probably read this one.
You can get this book from the nice folks at Gray&Co Publishers