I had the following interaction yesterday on Twitter.
@MrRogersMovie: “See how a little kindness makes a world of difference. Won’t You Be My Neighbor? is an intimate look at America’s favorite neighbor: Mister Fred Rogers. Watch the trailer and see it in select theaters June 8th. #MrRogersMovie”
@nickacoates Retweeted: “I’m pumped for this not just because he was a big part of my childhood, but because his message and vision is something our world needs to hear and embrace: we are all neighbours.”
(Nick is a minister in Canada, hence the “u.”)
@Ethan_Bryan replied: “That is pretty much the whole point of playing catch. Making new friends throughout the city, having fun together, intentionally celebrating what is good. I love Mr. Rogers.”
@nickacoates replied: “I love your baseball wisdom.”
Barring illness or injury, trying to play catch every day shouldn’t be all that hard; my daughters have both agreed to play any time I ask them throughout this year. Trying to play catch every day with someone different, however, is quite a challenge, especially for this introvert. It has forced me out of my house and away from my dog and out of the libraries and coffee shops into the community to meet my neighbors and learn their stories.
I am loving it.
Joe works the super early shift at KOLR-10 with Daniel (Day #5) and Elisa (Day #36). Like Elisa, he’s a Yankees fan as he’s bounced around between living on the east coast and in the Midwest: New Jersey to New York to St. Louis to Mizzou to Illinois to South Carolina and now to Springfield.
Joe met me at Fassnight Field with his old Nolan Ryan autographed-model glove and we talked about life in the Midwest and on the coast.
He’s been in Springfield for almost a year now. He likes to run the trails throughout the Ozarks and enjoys growing his cooking skills. He loves the variety of restaurants in the area; Black Sheep is among his favorites. And while he does miss the east coast beaches (who can blame him?), he loves the feeling of community, the honest Midwest hospitality extended almost everywhere he goes.
Besides continuing to improve as anchor, one of Joe’s simple dreams for 2018 is to continue to get out and meet people in the community, to explore and strike up fun conversations and learn more about his neighbors. Although a 2:30 AM wake-up call does make that somewhat of an interesting challenge.
This year is the 50th anniversary of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. One of my favorite quotes is this:
“Play is often talked about as if it were a relief from serious learning. But for children play is serious learning. Play is really the work of childhood.”
I would like to add that play can help adults do serious learning, too, especially in the area of neighborliness.
Joe, you are always welcome to join me as I meet new people playing catch.
Be sure to keep that Nolan Ryan glove on hand!