ar·cane (är-kān') adj. requiring secret or mysterious knowledge;

Buck and the Red Dress

Posted in inspiration, sports by arcanedufresne on January 15, 2010

This is an excerpt from Joe Posnanski’s blog post today. As usual, I love finding inspiration and I love finding ways to positively influence others around me so I couldn’t pass on the opportunity to share this with everyone who may be reading, especially Kevin. Find your red dress, friends.

I love to come out early to games and watch the field get watered down, the lines get drawn, the grass get mowed, the turf get cleaned (or whatever it is you do for turf). I still love the little things … I think I learned some of that from Buck O’Neil. I’ll tell you a Buck story if you will allow me … I traveled around the country with Buck for a book that I wrote called “The Soul of Baseball.” And it was the best professional experience of my life, without a doubt. Buck was 93 and 94 years old then, and he was so full of life, so energetic, most days it was hard to keep up with him.

And then, one day in New York, I saw him slow down. It was a long day, full of interviews and appearances, and by the end of it he was just exhausted. I remember him telling me that he wasn’t even going to dinner, he was too tired. He was going head back to his room and get some sleep. It was very unlike him. But, I understood.

As we were walking to the hotel, I saw this woman. She was wearing a red dress. It wasn’t just a normal red dress – this was a Marilyn Monroe red dress. You could see if from Brooklyn. And as we went inside, I turned to Buck to ask him if he had seen the woman …

… and Buck was gone.

I mean he was gone. I looked all around. I looked to see if there was a bathroom nearby. I looked to see if he had stayed in the car – but the car was gone. And then I looked outside and saw Buck talking to the woman in the red dress. Buck was talking, and she was laughing, then she was talking and Buck was laughing, they were hugging, and then this guy came over, and he was talking, they were all laughing, they were all hugging, it was really something.

After about 10 minutes or so, Buck walked into the hotel looking fresh as morning. He said, “Well, let’s go get something to eat.”

As we walked toward the restaurant, Buck suddenly stopped. And he looked at me. And he said, “Did you see that woman with the red dress?”
“Yeah Buck, I saw her.”

And then he shook his head and with the teacher’s sternness he said: “Son, in this life, you don’t ever walk by a red dress.”

I guess that’s the big lesson I take from Buck. Whatever your red dress is – whatever opportunities are out there for you – don’t walk by. And don’t miss out.

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