Do you believe in Kismet?

"When the

student is ready the teacher appears. When the student is truly ready the teacher


- Lao Tzu

I love that quote. Aren't we all students making discoveries about ourselves and the world throughout our lives? We are if we're awake. I know I've learned a lot since becoming a parent some 23 years ago. I don't normally get all philosophical, but I was trying to think of ideas for this essay when I passed by Peirce Park and saw Little League season has begun. Oh, I love the buzz of the players, the smell of cheeseburger smoke from the Pitchin' Kitchen, the sun on the outfield, the dads coaching kids. When I was a Little League mom, I remember parents serendipitously topping off a plastic cup with tasty libations from their car trunks. Wonder if they still do that?

Are you a student of baseball? Some people consider it an art form. The pitching, the fielding. That's great, but growing up as an ardent Cubs fan, I don't understand that. Games at Wrigley seemed more like a beer fest if my memory holds. "Beer an inning," was my friends' battle cry. Anyway, I haven't been to Wrigley in years. Married a White Sox fan, and my kid's a White Sox fan too. Seriously, that might be considered sacrilege in Chicago.

Which leads me to my favorite art form, writing. I've loved it for as long as I can remember, working on school newspapers in high school and college. After graduating, I left it behind when my life moved in a different direction.

Then one day years ago, after a Little League game, I rushed to the library to return books. Tripping up the cement steps, opening the heavy wooden doors just before closing time. I wasn't looking for any new books that day, I was just minding my own business, trying not to get fined, when I discovered "Writer Mama" by Christina Katz and "How to Become a Famous Writer Before You're Dead" by Ariel Gore. Kismet? Maybe.

Since then, I've taken online classes, attended retreats with those writers. Before my first team call with Christina, I paced the house, wondering if my writing would be good enough? With shaking hands, I grabbed a bottle of white from the fridge, downed two glasses. The call went great. And that, as they say, was that. I identify as a writer now.

Thanks to Pam and The Hinsdalean for giving me the opportunity to be a contributing columnist. A final quote from a boss of mine who often said, "Grasshopper, there is no perfect world." Maybe, but Hinsdale comes pretty darn close.

- Lisa Seplak of Hinsdale is a contributing columnist. Readers can email her at [email protected].