Sunday, January 13, 2013

Day 20. Cleaning my brushes with Ichiro $25

Back in 2007, Japanese-born baseball player, Suzuki Ichiro (ee-chee-row), gave an interview to Bob Costas on HBO Sports.  Ichiro was a Seattle Mariner at the time, not a New York Yankee as he is now. With unbelievable dedication to his sport, his reverence of every aspect of baseball extends to his equipment as well.  Ichiro said he could never understand when players would break their bats or slam them into the ground in anger. He pondered, it wasn't the bat's fault or your glove's fault that you failed.  Why would you take it out of the tools of the game?  Costas reported how after every game, Ichiro would faithfully polish his glove, having the utmost respect for the objects that permitted him to play and to succeed at what he does.

When it's time to take care and clean my paint brushes, I'm often tired and want to just leave them soaking in water until tomorrow.  But then I think to myself, "Remember Ichiro," and force myself to go to the sink, get out my pale yellow container of brush cleaner, and let the spirit of Suzuki Ichiro take over.

As is typical, my favorite part of the interview is nowhere to be found on Google or YouTube.  But, here's a couple of interesting facts on this superstar's achievements and how he worked hard to get them.

  • Ichiro is said to have practiced baseball  every day of his life from 3rd grade through high school. He is still very intense in his approach to the game.
  • He joined his first baseball team at age 7 and asked his father, Nobuyuki, to teach him to be a better palyer. The regimented daily routine included the youngster fielding 50 ground balls and 50 fly balls, throwing 50 pitches from the mound and hitting 200 "live" pitches and 300 pitches from a machine.
  • As a youngster, Suzuki had the word shuchu—concentration— written on his glove, and he would glance at the word before every pitch. (Steve DiMeglio-Baseball Weekly-6/1/05) 
  • His intelligence is off the charts.
    • Ichiro believes having a clear mind is more important than having a healthy body.  “It’s the times when you’re in a normal mental state that you have a chance to turn in a great performance. If you allow yourself to drift out of normalcy because of pressure or frustration or some other factor, that’s when things can go wrong," 

    Read all of the article here:

    And p.s.--he has great facial hair. (-;

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