Iguess it just takes a more creative mind than my own.
I was busy reading Wednesday's York Dispatch, when I came upon a story on Page B5 about Molly Baldwin's entrepreneurial efforts at sports fashion.
And I swear the first thought in my brain, once I digested enough of the story to know what she was doing, was: "Why didn't I do that?"
I've actually said that a few times in my life whenever someone else came up with an idea -- and made money on it, sometimes lots of money -- that I'd been thinking about for years, but just never did anything about it.
"Why didn't I do that?" Or the variation: "Why didn't I think of that?"
Or the variation: "What the hell's wrong with me anyway?"
In case you missed the story because you don't read anything in a newspaper but the sports pages: Baldwin is the fiancée of York Revolution Manager Mark Mason. So she goes to a lot of Revolution games. She likes baseball, in fact, which is pretty handy considering the amount of time she spends at ballgames.
Anyway, she sits in section 12 -- right behind home plate -- and while she's watching the pre-game activities, she's also dismantling baseballs.
Yes, that's right -- she's taking them apart.
Like a lot of you who have a passion for baseball, I've seen my share of baseballs that were falling apart. Maybe not lately, but in my youth.
Because back in my day, which was 50 years ago and then some, we didn't always have a new baseball to play with when the old one started falling apart. Once the red thread tore, it was only a matter of time and enough whacks with a baseball bat before the ball was not fit to use.
So when that happened, I got out my baseball repair kit and began stitching the baseball back together. Inside my repair kit were a selection of needles, a chunk of bee's wax, a ball of string, a pair of needle-nosed pliers and scissors.
In the beginning, it might have taken me a couple of hours to completely put a ball back together. And it was never "like new" when I was done, but it was the best I could do.
And it was better than no ball at all.
It's what some of us baseball crazies did when we were young, needed a baseball and didn't have the money to buy a new one every couple of weeks.
Sometimes we'd go to watch one of the adult county-league games -- Stoverstown was a 10-minute bike ride for me -- and hope to wrangle a batting-practice ball from one of the teams. Sometimes that worked, and sometimes it didn't.
Anyway, my point is that baseballs back in my day were highly prized possessions.
So we'd never be caught dead destroying one.
Yet there's Baldwin deconstructing baseballs. In plain sight, no less. Not brand new baseballs, of course, but batting practice balls that have started to go a little soft.
And she enjoys every moment of it.
I'm thinking there must be a law against this, on the same level as destroying American coins. If not a law, at least a rule. And if there isn't, there probably should be. Among baseball purists, balls and bats and gloves are, if not sacred, certainly highly valued.
There is a method to Baldwin's madness, of course. After tearing the baseball apart, she uses the two leather halves to create objects of fashion.
Of sorts. Stuff like bracelets and key chains.
Then she sells the stuff, 10 different bracelets ranging from $30 to $50, and two key chains for around $20.
She's already made a couple hundred bracelets, some pretty fancy, even artsy -- adorned with crystals, rhinestones, team logos and cancer-awareness logos.
And it's apparently popular stuff. People buy it. And wear it.
I might even buy something myself.
Because it is neat. And it's the ultimate in recycling -- and I do love the idea of recycling.
Anyway, if you want a look-see, take a peek at her online site: www.etsy.com/shop/braceletsbymolly.
Or find her sitting in the ballpark, and ask to see the bracelet she's wearing. She'll be glad to show you.
Footballs and basketballs are next, she says.
Somehow it doesn't hurt my feelings half as much to imagine her ripping apart footballs and basketballs as it does baseballs.
I imagine there's no end to the possibilities.
In fact, I have an idea I'll share with Molly. Assuming she and Mason are going to get married at some point, how about a wedding dress made out of baseball covers?
Lots of stitching, though, so she'd better get started.
Now why didn't I think of that?
Oh yeah, I guess I did.
Sports columns by Larry A. Hicks, Dispatch columnist, run Thurs days. E-mail: lhick firstname.lastname@example.org.