Eastern Ontario Fastball Blog

A blog dedicated to news about the Greater Ottawa Fastball League and other happenings in the world of fastball / fastpitch softball in eastern Ontario and western Quebec, with occasional stories featuring Mrs Fitzroy Fastball, Fitzroy Fastball Junior and the Caveman. If you have info to send on, send me an email at fastball[at]fitzroyharbour.com. Follow @fitzroyfastball on Twitter.

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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Caveman Calamity

The Fastball Family went on a ski trip to Mont Tremblant, Quebec just after Christmas for the first time (quick review: exceedingly expensive but excellent skiing conditions).

We aren't avid skiers, but given the opportunity to take the trip with some friends, we thought we'd go. Fitzroy Junior had received some new skis for Christmas and was keen to try them out. The Caveman was also excited to go after taking some lessons last year.

We headed to the hill, dropped a small fortune on lift tickets and rentals, and proceeded onto the slopes which were tightly packed with skiers and snowboarders of all types of skill levels.

To start off, Fitzroy Junior and I went up to the summit (an unbelieveable view from the peak) and went down a gentle beginners' trail which took about 40 minutes to descend. Beautiful conditions, tons of fresh groomed snow.

At the bottom, we met up with Mrs Fastball and the Caveman who had been trying things out on the 'bunny hill'. I watched the Caveman take the 'magic carpet' to the top and then gently carve back and forth down to the bottom, in full control and looking confident.

Feeling good about his abilities, Mrs Fastball and I made the fateful decision to take him up to the top of the mountain and take the same beginners' trail down that Fitzroy Junior and I took previously.

After a quick lunch at the top of the mountain in the jammed packed lodge (weiner dog for the Caveman), we were ready to tackle his first ever real ski run.

Fitzroy Junior went off ahead with the other families while Mrs Fastball and I were prepared to make our way down slowly with Caveman.

Right off the top, things were a bit worrisome. Caveman was uncharacteristically nervous. But he started off moving down the gradual slope, going back and forth and doing pretty well. Then he fell - gently - but he was not happy about it. "I don't want to do this anymore." But that's not an option when you are 2000 feet above the base of the hill on a trail that's 4 freaking miles long.

So, we told him he was doing a great job (which he was) and try again. Soon after, he was doing well again, but still was nervous. At one point, he got going a little fast, but I skiied ahead of him, blocked him off and eased him to a safe stop.

Then about a third of the way down, it started getting really crowded as the Nansen trail merged into another beginner slope. And the Caveman started getting freaked. And started NOT gently turning back and forth anymore - he 'froze' and started streaking down the hill at top speed, screaming his head off.  "HELLLLLP". (Not disimilar from this Caveman adventure.)

Before I could catch up to him and stop him as I did before, he decided to bail. And not just fall over, a forward launch of his wee 64 pound body forward, out of his bindings. He landed about 15 feet in front of his skis.

As I arrived to help him, he was screaming his head off in a fit of Caveman anger not seen in a while. "I hate skiing, skiing is stupid, why did you make me go, I hate this, get me home.....AGGGGGGH."

Shortly after a ski patroller showed up and tried to calm him down in his lilting French accent: "Allo, my name is Reee-chard. I am 'ere to 'elp you."

"Aaaaaaagh, skiing is stupid, dumb skis, I hate this."

Richard started trying to 'examine' him, but Mrs Fastball and I said, kind of embarassed, "it's OK, he's fine, he is just mad." He didn't seem to be in pain, just enraged. But Richard asked him if anything hurt and he said "my arm a little", so help was called and Caveman was on his way down the hill in a toboggan to the medical clinic. I was thinking it was a waste of time, but happy that at least he would get down the mountain without any further mishaps.

As we got to the clinic, he started getting pale. After an hour wait, an Xray (yeah they have an Xray machine at Tremblant) revealed that it was good we listened to Richard - a broken radius and ulna. His little right arm was fractured in two places.

They wrapped him up and put a sling on. The doctor on duty said he could set the break - but the Caveman would have to be awake for it and he strongly recommended against traumatizing a seven-year old with that.

So Mrs Fastball and I piled into the car with the woozy Caveman and headed off to the Children's Hospital of Eastern Ontario (CHEO), back in Ottawa. We made the trip in about 1h 40 min. (That's pretty fast.) He didn't seem to be in a huge amount of pain, so he is either one tough little rig or was in shock. At one point on the drive home he said "Mommy, I am pretty mad. Can I swear?" After a chuckle, he got permission to swear. He came up with "DAMN I HATE SKIING."

When we got to see the doctor at CHEO, they sent him for some supplemental Xrays, then sat him down for a chat. The doctor was wonderful, a women of about our age, who had a seven year old son as well. She described what need to be done: "You will be asleep and have a great dream. While you are sleeping, we will move your arm so your bones line up properly again."

Caveman to the doctor: "You'll move my arm? But that will hurt! A lot!" (She tried to remind him he'd be asleep). "It will hurt so much I will wake up!"
Then to Mrs Fastball and I, with tears streaming down his face, starting to walk toward the exit.: "Let's go home. I don't think it's broken. Just a sprain. We can come back tomorrow!"

We finally got him calmed down. As we waited for staff to prepare the room, we read the book we had brought along for him. In the last few months he has really got into reading and this helped to get his mind off the upcoming procedure. He is reading "Diary of a Wimpy Kid" books which we got him for Christmas. In the waiting room, he read aloud to me, relaxing somewhat his frazzled nerves.

Then it was time for him to go into the room and he was getting panicky again. Another doctor, a young female intern, told him he would go to sleep and wake up with a cast. He looked relieved: "So, you won't be moving my bones around then. That's good." The intern was about to clarify, but a quick pair of silent head shaking stares from Mrs Fastball and I were enough for her to say with a smile "Um, well, yes, you will just wake up with a cast."

That seemed to calm him a bit - but he soon realized he was going to have to have a needle inserted for an IV. He was not pleased with this. And it took the nurse three tries to find a vein in his good arm. To distract him, I had brought his book into the room. I insisted he continue to read aloud to me as the nurse poked him with the needle; and he did: screaming the words out at that top of his lungs. It was a spectacle to witness, him shaking like a leaf, eyes rimmed in teams, terror in his eyes, but still reading line by line carefully and accurately in a voice that likely could be heard at the reception desk. The nurse whispered to my wife, "That's quite something him reading like that!"

As the Ketamine dripped into his veins he drifted off, with his eyes wide open and fluttering, which is apparently common. We left the room and let the doctors get to work in what was a relatively quick procedure.

When he awoke, he was still hallucinating, and went off on a stream of conciousness riff that had the doctors, nurse and parents cracking up. I wish I would have taped it - he was reliving the accident, describing it in a dreamlike montone, but the details were such that he was a character in a video game (his ramble ended with "Game Over").

He was given a popsicle to suck on, and, unprompted, proceeded to thank the nurse for the treat and also thank her "and your friends" for helping fix his arm.

The Caveman is convalescing at home. The cast will be on for six weeks. We are hoping Combat Sports Group does not pull its sponsorship, since he will be on the hockey team injured list until playoffs. It is his right arm, i.e. fastball pitching arm, but we are hopeful that his recovery will be a full one.

He is good spirits and has received several visits and phone calls with best wishes, and even got a few presents much to his surprise. ("Why would people give me presents just because I broke my arm? That's messed!")

Just to conclude, I would like to thank the staff at CHEO who are awesome. And I don't mean in the sense of that word as it is used slangly far too frequently ("This pizza is awesome." "What an awesome hit." "We won the tourney - it was awesome.") I mean awesome in the true sense of the word as per the dictionary: "inspiring an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, produced by that which is grand, sublime, extremely powerful, or the like."  You trust your kid with these doctors and nurses and they really are inspiring in this way and I am thankful we have a facility in the Ottawa area such as CHEO.


Thursday, December 20, 2012

Caveman Comedy Compendium

The Caveman has been up to his usual strangeness - a few of his latest for your amusement.


The other night, the Fastball Family was enjoying the "Yuletide Channel" (pronounced "Yu-la-TUDE" by Fitzroy Junior). That's the channel with the fireplace and the cheesy seasonal music. The perennial classic "White Christmas" starts playing.

Caveman: "What's this song?"

Mrs. Fastball: "Why that's White Christmas of course. Sung by Bing Crosby!"

Caveman: "Oh. Is that Sidney's daddy?"


I hear Caveman talking to Mrs. Fastball as she is doing the dishes: “Mommy, it’s Virginia, right?”

Mrs. Fastball: " What are you talking about now, Caveman?”

I leave the kitchen for a bit, and come back.

Mrs. Fastball is laughing when I return......"Ask your father what you just asked me” she says.

“Daddy, it’s Virginia right? Boys pee using their penis and girls use a Virginia. Is that right?”


Snappy dresser that he is, Caveman presents himself before bed - with his pyjama top on backwards.

Mrs. Fastball tells him "Turn it around, bonehead!"

Caveman gives her a look, shrugs.....and does a 360 pirouette and says "Is that good?"


Recently, the Caveman came into my place of work - where I always apply myself diligently and only do fastball related activities during scheduled breaks and lunch hour.  The young lad was coming in to meet my coworkers. They have heard most of the Caveman stories and were anxious to meet him in person.

I had told him about my one coworker named Geraldine. When I introduced him to her, his eyes registered confusion and he looked somewhat surprised. But he was very polite and chatted with her briefly.

On the way home, he said to me "Before I met her, I thought Geraldine was a boy, daddy."

Me: "No Caveman, of course not."

Caveman: "OK, I guess that's a girl's and a boy's name."

Me: "No Caveman, Geraldine is always a girl's name."

After a brief back and forth, I figured out why he thought she was a guy - with his typical way of hearing things much differently than the rest of the human race, he had thought all along that my coworker's name was "Gerald Dean".


The Caveman is a hardworking novice hockey player. Sometimes he gets sore knees afterward. Mrs. Fastball will apply good old Rub A535 to help ease the pain in his aching joints. (Note: I wasn't aware that A535 was a Canadian thing until just now. US American readers, this stuff is a smelly linament, somewhat similar to Tiger Balm.)

Last night, after a hard fought 1-1 tie against Carleton Place in which he almost (but failed) to score his first career goal, he was sore so we put a good dose of A535 on his knees before bed.

A short time later, we heard some yelping and shouting. "Ahhhhhhh, help me! Help me!"

Turns out that after rubbing his knees, he...uh.....'adjusted' himself somewhat, getting the hot balm where you really don't want it. A harsh lesson to learn for the Caveman, but one he won't soon forget!


Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all blog readers. Thanks for your comments and support throughout the year and your kind words about the blog, as well as all the contributions that get sent in. Keep 'em coming, and check back in the new year for more fastball news (and other Caveman stories).

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OASA Midget 1966 Champions

From the North Grenville hall of fame - the 1966 OASA Midget Boys Provincial champions (hat tip TC).

Check out the story here.


Crush Victoria Weekend May 2-4 Tournament in Woodstock

Crush Victoria Weekend May 2-4 Tournament in Woodstock

The Crush Men's Fastball team will again be hosting the Annual Woodstock Victoria Weekend Fastball Tournament for 2013.

This tournament runs:
May 18th, 19th, 20th (Possibly to have games on Friday, May 17th??)

Our goal is to have 16 teams this year.
Entry Fee : $400.00
Cheques to be made out to: "Crush Mens Fastball Club"
Prize Money: TBD based on a pending # of teams
Format : TBD based on a pending # of teams

We would like to again have Pool Play with "A", "B", "C" Finals
3 or 4 game guarantee depending # of teams participating
Tournament Eligibility - (same Rule as 2012 tournament)

This tournament will be open to all positional players who have and have not played at the Senior level in the past. However, we will not allow any Senior pitchers who have current ISC PRAWN status (as a pitcher) to pitch in the tournament. This restricted list will be posted shortly.

There will be a licensed beer garden, with food.

There is again a Midway with rides for the kids of all ages.

Victoria Day Parade will be on route by the ballpark on the Monday Morning.

Registration will be taken on a first-come-first serve basis, and your entry will be held only with your entry fee.

Hotel information to be provided shortly

We will be providing more information as it becomes available

If interested please inquire to:
Darryl Wharram


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Men's Senior Nationals in Stratford, ON in 2013

from Al's Fastball

The Stratford Lions Club and its Lions Championships committee is pleased to announce it has been awarded The Softball Canada 2013 Senior Men's Canadian Fastpitch Championships

August 25th - September 1st, 2013

This national event will be held at the superb and purpose built Softball Facility Packham Road Diamonds 159 Packham Avenue Stratford, Ontario.

For more information email: lionschampionships@gmail.com

Visit us on Face Book and learn more about our facilities and tournaments


The Facility

The center is the superb and purpose built Packham Road Diamonds located in the south end of the City of Stratford. This 5 diamond facility features:

- all diamonds fully lighted - all diamonds are fully fenced with canopy dug-outs - all 5 diamonds are identical in everyway, field size, infield, fencing, etc - outfield fencing set for either regulation Fastpitch or slo-pitch - outfields are fully sprinklered (automatic in-ground) - infield sprinklered for dust and surface control (automatic in-ground) - all clay in-fields - large warm-up areas - ample bleacher seating at all diamonds - large and modern Club House with extensive open and covered patios - full food and beverage facilities in the Club House - modern, clean and fully functional washroom facilities in the Club House - Officials change rooms and lounge in the club house - large area for vendors at the main entrance - on-site parking on site for approximately 400 cars - the facility has fully controlled access for all tournaments

About Lions Championships

The Stratford Lions Club was Chartered January 13 1925. The club has been an active part of the City of Stratford providing value added projects to the City. These include such things as the Lions Pool, Dufferin Park and the Lions Dufferin Arena, The Band Shell, The Razzamajazz music barge, a legacy donation to the recent expansion of Stratford General Hospital and numerous scholarships and other community support projects. The Stratford Lions Club is a member of Lions International the world's largest service club organization.

Lions Championships is a project to promote Softball/Fastpitch and Slo-pitch with the City, Region, Canada and Internationally. The center is the purpose built Packham Road Ball Park located in the south end of the City.

For more information on The Softball Canada 2013 Senior Men's Canadian Fastpitch Championships and other Lions Championships events please contact us.

Matt Richards
Director and Championship Chair
Stratford Lions Club

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Monday, December 10, 2012

Join the Softball Ontario Participation Committee

Softball Ontario’s Participation Program is please to remind you that we are advertising for positions on the Participation Committee, and that the deadline to apply is TOMORROW - December 11, 2012. Participation Committee Volunteers are an essential part of Softball Ontario’s efforts to promote the game of softball in our province. Successful candidates will take a leadership role in the development of the Participation Program in Ontario, and will assist the Participation Committee Chairman in setting program goals and objectives, representing the Participation Program, and working to improve softball in the province of Ontario.

Participation Committee Members will be expected to attend all committee meetings (approximately 2 per year) as well as attend the annual Get In The Game Symposium. Ideally, a Participation Committee Member will have experience with softball at the house league level, with the following qualifications:

Passionate about softball
Enthusiastic and dynamic personality
Knowledge of the BlastBall and Learn to Play programs is an asset
Works well with others

The Participation Committee is currently involved with the following programs, with more projects under development:

CSAP Workshops
Try Softball Program
Community Fun Team
Get In The Game Symposium

How to Apply
All interested candidates are asked to apply in writing, expressing your interest along with a detailed resume outlining your softball background and qualifications for this position. Letters of application should be sent no later than December 11, 2012. If you have applied for a position on the Participation Committee in the past, we ask that you re-submit your resume.

Email your resume to Lisa Crompton at lcrompton@softballontario.ca for consideration.

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Saturday, December 08, 2012

ISC Tournament in Kitchener in 2014

The International Softball Congress is pleased to announce that Kitchener, Ontario has been chosen as the host site for the 2014 ISC World Tournament.

Kitchener Fastball Promotions (KFP) was awarded the 68th ISC World Tournament after a vote by the ISC Board of Directors to approve the contract.

"We're thrilled about returning to Kitchener after a six-year absence and are looking forward to working with an experienced group like KFP," said ISC Executive Director Larry Fisher.

The co-chairs for the 2014 World Tournament will be Rick Boyd and Duncan Matheson. The games will be played on all three diamonds at Peter Hallman Ball Yard, where lights will be installed on the third diamond, as well as on the two diamonds at Budd Park, just a short five-minute drive from PHBY.

"Now the hard work begins to get ready for this," said Rick Boyd. "We are excited about bringing the ISC World Tournament and the world's best fastball players back to centre-stage here in Kitchener."

This will the fourth time that Kitchener will have hosted the ISC World Tournament, previously holding it in 2002 and back-to-back in 2006 and 2007.

In addition to the ISC World Tournament, teams will also compete in the ISC II consolation bracket as well as the 50+ Legends and the U21 Youth divisions.

For more information, contact
Joe Todd
ISC VP Communications
Ingersoll, Ontario


Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Condolences to the Williams family - with link

Condolences to the Williams family are in order today, as a great friend of fastball in our area and blog contributor Shawn "Pugger" Williams lost his mother, Bev, today.

There will be a visitation at the following times at Tubman's at 3440 Richmond Road:

Wednesday December 5, from 1-3 and 6-8 pm.
Thursday December 6, from 1-3 and 6-8 pm.
Funeral will be held at Friday December 7 at 11am at Trinity United Church on Maitland Avenue.

Obituary as posted in the Ottawa Citizen is here.