Thursday, October 1, 2009

Wait Till Next Year

Baseball is like a poker game,
nobody wants you to quit when he's losing:

nobody wants you to quit when you're ahead.
Jackie Robinson

Wait Till Next Year: A Memoir
Doris Kearns Goodwin

Baseball and growing up...are there two things that go together better? Goodwin takes us on a wonderful journey and shares her love of the Dodgers, growing up in Rockville Centre, NY during the 1940's, her neighborhood and her family. The hated, and heated, rivalry between the Dodgers, Yankees and Giants and how the neighborhood had a friendly rivalry with who they were fans of. As she explains, that team affiliation was passed on from father to child along with the history of the team.

Goodwin first trip to Ebberts Field, what she fondly remembers is the sights, sounds the players, and sitting next to her father with her scorebook....not the outcome. This was the years of Jackie Robinson, Don Newcombe, Duke Snider, Leo Durocher and every year the Dodgers were the "bridesmaids" who came so close to winning the World Series, but they always had to "wait till next year."

Goodwin's neighborhood was the typical 1950's neighborhood, the corner drug store, butcher shops, soda shops, the butchers...who were New York Giant fans and with whom she had a friendly rivalry with. Goodwin's two older sisters, along with her parents, followed the Dodgers as religiously as they followed being Catholics.

This book was our book discussion book this week, and what a wonderful trip down memory lane we all had. There were those that vividly remembered those years of the Dodgers, and the explosion of joy in 1955 when they finally won the World Series, along with the heartache and sorrow when that "bastard" O'Malley moved them to Los Angeles, California. We also talked about the change television brought, not just to Goodwin's neighborhood, but to all of us. Any book that makes people smile and have such a look of joy on their faces when discussing it, that's a good book. One of my group, Bob turns to me during the discussion and says, "I feel like I'm at an Italian dinner table!" I nod my head and say, this was a good book. Not just for baseball fans...about growing up and change.

Highly recommended.

Happy Reading!


Anonymous said...

"baseball is like poker game" we do grate grammur heer.

Bev said...

Ah, you're right! I didn't catch that. Thank you!

Anonymous said...

I've always wanted to take a vacation that includes all the great ballparks . . . thanks for the post. I'll definitely check this one out (or at least tell my husband to read it!).

Bev said...

Thanks Drue for you comments! It was a great book, as you could tell, we had a great time with it.
I'm glad you stopped by.