Friends continue tradition via video conferencing

Wednesday, August 4 2010

Four friends are using video conferencing to keep a 38-year-old tradition alive, reports the Capital Gazette.

The men - Dare Brown, Bill Blewett, Steve Malone and Harvey Tate - have been getting together once a week since the 1970s to play a dice game called Strat-O-Matic Baseball. But that threatened to change when Tate moved from Annapolis, Maryland, to Mechanicsville, Virginia - 130 miles away.

At the beginning of this year's baseball season, the three men remaining in Maryland gathered around a laptop, using video conferencing technology to include their fourth friend in the game.

According to the Gazette, the tradition started in 1970 when Brown saw an ad for Strat-O-Matic in a comic book he was reading on the beach. The game, which is not unlike fantasy football, involves cards reflecting current data on Major League Baseball's top players, scoring sheets and dice. The "season" consists of 12 days of play, though the friends often stretch this into two weeks or more by playing some "half-days."

Video conferencing has provided a number of inventive new ways to keep friends and family members in touch. Recently, the Poughkeepsie Journal reported on a growing number of grandparents using video conferencing and web conferencing technology to stay connected to their grandchildren.ADNFCR-3295-ID-19919802-ADNFCR