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A Wife's Tale: How I Learned To Stop Being Bored By And Learned To Love The Astros

Ed. note: My wife asked me a while back if she could write a column about how she prepares for spring training, with a baseball obsessive for a husband. To ensure I stay married, I let her do it. She'll be writing on a semi-regular basis during the season on Saturdays. Just don't believe anything she says about me.

By our third anniversary, I shouldn’t be surprised when my husband turns to me at dinner and starts to discuss his other love—baseball. This is the man, after all, who casually suggested Florida for our March honeymoon. He plans his free time around watching Astros games. He has two TVs set up in our living room. Even if I want to watch a show, he won’t miss a game.

The car radio is constantly tuned to a game or sports talk. I hear about the Astros all season long. I hear about the players, the games, the trades, and anything and everything that goes on. (Basically, I get the audio version of The Crawfish Boxes). And it's not just the Astros. I hear about other MLB teams, college games, fantasy trades and tidbits of baseball history trivia. He tells baseball jokes that I don't find particularly funny. He plays baseball games on the XBox and wants me to be excited about those teams. Seriously.

Finally, at some point every fall, the baseball talk winds down. David’s attention is divided between the news of the offseason and other sports (like football). I have to hear about his Madden team instead of his virtual baseball team. Sure, there are still occasional baseball comments, but it’s slowed to a trickle compared to the deluge of data I hear during the regular season. By Christmas, I have almost forgotten…

A few short months later, though, it’s our anniversary. Spring Training is underway. My husband starts the sweet talk about baseball at our anniversary dinner, and I remember. My husband is obsessed with baseball. There is a long season ahead of us.

I grew up in Omaha, Nebraska, where there is no major league team. There is an affiliate team of the Royals. But really, for most of my life, I didn’t follow baseball. Admittedly, I even thought the game to be, well…boring.
But, somewhere in David’s enthusiasm for the game, I became a fan of baseball. Many fans can recall a reason they love the game and the Astros. For David, it was a family tradition. For me, it was the scorecard. David taught me how to score a game, and I loved it. It gave me a reason to watch the game, to know the players’ names, and to know their positions. Baseball isn’t so boring after all.

Since I already didn’t have a home team to root for, I picked the Astros. But, I am a more casual fan than my husband. I want them to win (and am disappointed when they don’t). I wear Astros t-shirts and hats and am a big fan of the throwback uniforms. I know some of the players names (mainly the ones who are on my own fantasy baseball team or who appear on the Houston Humane Society Astro Player and Pet calendar).

Sometimes I wonder if I’m enabling my husband’s baseball obsession by being a fan of the game too. Really though, I’m not sure that I could stop the obsession if I tried. But you know what they say, if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. So at that anniversary dinner, I listen to that baseball talk, nodding. It’s somewhat interesting. He is my husband, and this is something that he really loves. But then I change the subject. I am a just casual fan after all.

And I can read it on TCB later.