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Munenori Kawasaki

Tuesday, May 28, 2013


MUNENORI KAWASAKI IS a Japanese shortstop for the Toronto Blue Jays and he is attracting a lot of attention from many of the fans who watch his games. I learned about Munenori from a good friend who is a baseball fan and has seen him play several times. Munenori is proof once again that every single person can bring their own unique talents, gifts, energy and enthusiasm to whatever it is that they are passionate about. Everyone can make a difference in their own interesting and diverse way. There may be hundreds of major league baseball players, but only one Munenori. He has great energy and people are attracted to him.

He is loved for many reasons. His pre-game rituals/warm-ups include chair yoga (it is actually a combination of dance, yoga and qigong that he is doing in a chair) followed by very active handstands and other yoga poses done against the wall. Sometimes he dances as his warm up. During the game fans often see him doing yoga poses such as the pigeon during breaks in the play. He never stands still. Munenori was born in Japan and brings some of his Japanese rituals of bowing and hugging to his team members before, during and after games. He almost always has a huge grin on his face and appears to really be having fun and enjoying the game.

Prior to playing with the Blue Jays, he played for the Seattle Mariners and “Mariners fans wailed when the team released Munenori Kawasaki. They adored the bench-warming infielder’s attitude, heart and hustle on the baseball field; he was a bright light in a Seattle dugout that could, at times, be pretty dark.”

What I love about this story is how the fans respond to Munenori’s energy, enthusiasm, attitude and his big heart as he plays. We all look for the good in others. We all want to see every person do their best and be their best self and enjoying life. We all feel happy when we are in contact with happy people. As summer approaches and our county hosts thousands of tourists who come up to retreat and rest and rejuvenate (and support our local economy) we each can be like Munenori and let our lights shine and have fun and be generous and have big hearts.

We each contribute to raising the good vibrations in our county and it all makes a difference. Whether our job is to greet someone at the dump, or serve someone in the grocery store or take a group of people on a cycling trip around Haliburton County we can do it with our best self. We can each choose to be big-hearted, light-hearted, generous and playful. We’ll feel happy about the summer, and so will the tourists. Let’s have a great summer everyone.

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