Trina Machacek: Getting views from the other side

Trina Machacek

Trina Machacek

Just the other day I was thinking about playing baseball. It has been more than a few years since I have played baseball. OK it was softball, with a blow up ball!
There are nine people on the field and every one of those fielders are there for one reason. To keep the guy at bat from touching not only each one of the three bases but especially that coveted home plate. Sure each player has a job. But! Yes a rounding third base “but.” Who has the most important job out on the field?
I narrowed it to either the pitcher or the catcher. It really comes down to which one you will perceive has the game in their hands. Your perception.
Take the pitcher. Seems everyone wants to pitch. The wind up, the stretch, the pitch. And the crowd goes wild with every strike delivered perfectly over the plate. “Steeeeerike,” hollers the umpire.
To any baseball fan who has enjoyed the game with peanuts, pennants and programs the pitcher is the do all, end all. I mean come on. He stands on the mound, above everything delivering the action. If he does his job perfectly the rest of the team just needs to stand their ground and look good in those jerseys all decked out with mascots emblazoned on them.
Oh and those cute baseball socks. I think baseball socks are cool. But I am one who loves socks. I have socks with rubber ducks on them and some with flamingos on them and. Oops slid off the baseball mound. Let’s slide on into second base.
Even if the pitcher threw a slew of strikes and pitched a perfect game there is one person he could not do that without. The catcher. Hummm maybe the catcher can be perceived as the most important player.
The pitcher not withstanding, the catcher is the one responsible for protecting home plate. He will defend that diamond-shaped piece of real estate by firmly planting himself squarely between the home plate and a runner coming at him full speed after rounding third, seeing the third base coach frantically waving him home. The catcher will look at a fielder throwing the ball from clear out in center field, fast and accurately to home right at him. The catcher looks at the ball, the plate, the runner, the ball coming in hot, the runner coming in hot. Both toward home plate. There he is, charged with protecting home plate at all costs.
And so it goes, ball, runner, plate. Yes the catcher literally throws himself in the line of fire to protect home. In the same way the pitcher literally throws his pitch to steal any chance the batter might have of getting a hit.
So is your perception that the catcher or the pitcher is the most important player? Either way, whew. That was quite an inning wasn’t it?
Perceptions came up in conversation a while ago. What? Yes, I have deep important conversations occasionally. Just occasionally though. I don’t want to get into the habit of actually learning.
The perception that was the topic was this. I said it was so much easier for a guy in the realm of the girl boy relationships than it was for the girl. All he has to do is ask a girl out and there are so many girls to choose from. Holy cats and kittens was I surprised to learn that guys are not of that same thinking. Guys say the girl has the easy part. I was told the girl doesn’t even have to try like a guy does. See? Perceptions.
I found there was not going to be a succinct winner in that conversation. But just that the conversation was open and fun was worth the frustration of there not being an all out winner. Not coming to a final decision was well worth the time put in to talk about it.
You know what I found out? It is very hard to convince someone of your side of the conversation when, after many years of living life, the person you are talking to has never looked at things from any other side because it never came up before.
Isn’t it amazing that there are still things to talk about that may not have been broached before with people around you? Bring this subject up next time the talk dies down around you. Mention that you think one side of the coin has it easier when coming to things involving female male paths traveled. It’s going to open your eyes like you can’t believe. Oh and yes, I do still believe the guy has it easier. Bet that will not be the last word on this subject.
Trina Machacek lives in Eureka. Her book “They Call Me Weener,” is available on Amazon. Or email her at to find out how to get a signed copy.


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