It had been a frustrating morning.
Back in May I was made aware of a baseball team in my home city of Atlanta that played every Saturday during the spring. The team was special for a powerful reason: each of its players was deeply visually impaired, if not completely blind.
At the time I anticipated a tremendously moving story, but I could not find a day to shoot it before their season ended. However, I was told, the team — named the Atlanta Eclipse — would be a part of a truly special event in late July: the World Series of beep baseball.
(The sport is called “beep baseball” because the ball beeps, so that the players can hear it.)
I then learned that the World Series would feature 19 teams from around the country, as well as the defending world champions from Taiwan. Beyond that, it would be held in Columbus, Ga., a mere 90-minute drive from Atlanta.
I got excited. The story, I felt, had great potential; I would simply have to cool my heels for two months until the Series arrived.
But now, nearly two months later, I was frustrated.
I had arranged to shoot a practice several weeks before the Series, but the day beforehand I learned that a majority of the players would be unable to attend, for various reasons. I showed up on a rainy Saturday morning to find just three players — along with their aides and the team’s volunteers and coaches.
Because of that, and because of the weather, I did not have much to shoot. I got whatever video I could, but I knew it would pale in comparison to what I would see at the World Series.
Hence the frustration. No one was to blame, but I found myself spending valuable weekend hours on a shoot that had produced disappointingly little.
So I decided to play.