Sunday, September 2, 2012


I just reached a milestone in my 1981 APBA baseball game replay. After rollin’ the dice for the July 11, 1981, contest between Cleveland and Baltimore tonight, I now have less than 1,000 games to go before I finish the season.

It may not seem much of a landmark for some, and it’s not that big of an accomplishment when compared to other things in life, I guess. But longtime APBA players get the milestone and I bet someone out there is tipping the yellow dice cup in my honor.

As clichĂ© as it sounds, replaying a season, rolling the dice game-by-game, is a journey. It takes me well over a year to play a season and I think I play more games each day than some do. I average four or five games a day. Divide by that by the 2,000-plus games required in a full season and you’re looking at 400 or more days.

A lot happens in real life while I’m replaying a season that happened more than 30 years ago and while I’m creating a made-believe, alternative life. 

I’ll go through two Christmas doing this replay. The country may elect a new president and we’ll have new Super Bowl and World Series winners along the way. Celebrities pass away, fads come and go quickly, gas prices continue to rise during replays.

As a newspaper reporter, I cover stories on a daily basis and, during my 1981 replay already, I’ve written about snowstorms, tornadoes, court cases and, recently, a bizarre deal where a kid apparently shot himself in the back of a police car after he was arrested. Rev. Jesse Jackson came to town questioning racial overtones in the subsequent shooting investigation.

Like I said, life happens while you recreate life.

Once, I met an old girlfriend, rekindled our high school romance and then broke up, all during my 1974 replay. I went through the hardships of a bankruptcy and newspaper economics as I played the 1932 season.  My wife’s health worsened, she rebounded and then passed away while I rolled the 1987 season.

And that may be why I enjoy the game so much. In the roller coaster that is life, the steady pace of an APBA season helps balance the level of sanity. The games pass by one by one. It’s not that I want the season over. Each season takes on a personality, and APBA players can attest to this. When a season is over, it’s like putting away a memory.

But there are other seasons ahead.

And there’s more life that will pass by while the stable, steady replays keep coming.

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