Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Pick Me Out A Winner Bobby

There are many ways in which people connect with the past.  It could be reading a book, looking at photographs, or visiting a site or museum.  In our Interactive Exhibit Design course, we have been encouraged to select an item we might find lying around our house, and by performing an action, imagine that this object somehow connects us to the past.  With the aid of imagination and a little magic - this ordinary item becomes a "history appliance."  

My colleagues have come up with some truly innovative ideas.  There are objects for every interest: the traveler, the java junkie, the fashionista, the meteorologist, and even those who would like to do more than just curl up with a good book.  With all these entertaining ideas, it is clear that we could take this "history appliance" in any possible (or seemingly impossible) direction we wanted.  However, there was one suggestion that caught my eye as I was reading the assignment, and as much as I brainstormed - I was continually drawn back to my original idea.  The suggestion: "an item of sports equipment" - the idea: a baseball bat.

Now, I had started to feel that baseball has played a much larger role in this blog than it actually does in my life.  Don't get me wrong - I'm a fan, and I interned at the Hall of Fame - but there are many other things that interest me, and I am certainly no baseball or sport historian.  But once this idea popped in my head I couldn't shake it.

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to hit that game-winning, record-breaking home run? (For my Canadian friends, it's the equivalent of a hat trick.)  With this bat you could experience that feeling.  Simply slip on this batting helmet (equipped with surround sound headphones), pick up the "Wonderboy", and swing for the fences!

The bat will gauge your swing and respond with the appropriate home run experience.  Perhaps yours is the "Shot heard round the world," and you hear this:

Or are you a lefty?  Take a swing and experience Roger Maris breaking Babe Ruth's record:

You could even tailor your experience, if there is a particular announcer you want to hear.  Consider Hank Aaron's 715th home run.  You could choose to hear Curt Gowdy (NBC), Milo Hamilton (Braves Radio Network), or Vin Scully (Dodgers Radio Network.)

For a more authentic experience, you can even opt out of the announcers, and keep it to the roar of the crowd and cheers of your teammates.  For a more in depth experience, screens could project the image of the stadium as you round the bases.  There are so many places the "Wonderboy" could take you.

There is something magical about listening to an exciting moment in sports history.  It's the kind of experience that makes the hair on your arms stand up.  The combination of your favorite player and that amazing announcer:

And then there are those moments I would rather not recreate with the "Wonderboy"...

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