On May 19, 2018, Academia Sinica held its very own Summer Softball Fun—Play Ball and Make New Friends event. Co-workers across the academy grabbed their gear and stepped out of their laboratories for a friendly game of softball! Players displayed true sportsmanship and team spirit.

Organized and hosted by the human resources department, and with a team led by President James C. Liao, this event aimed to provide colleagues an opportunity to meet and interact with one another through a fun and relaxing game of softball. On the day of the game, with the bright sun shining overhead, every participant came enthusiastic, excited, and ready to play!

To get the game started, Dr. Yuan Tseh Lee, President Emeritus of Academia Sinica threw the ceremonial first pitch, and President James C. Liao stepped up as the first batter up—he swung and successfully hit the ball. Afterwards, President Liao and President Emeritus Lee swapped roles with President Liao pitching and President Emeritus Lee batting. President Emeritus Lee also got in a good hit. To add to the excitement, President Liao also prepared special autographed baseballs to give out to lucky players—those with a quick eye and deft hand.

A total of eight teams signed up and participated in the softball game. Team names were creative, clever, and humorous, eliciting quite a few chuckles. These teams included the “James Imperial Bodyguard Team—The Strongest on Earth” (地表最強詹姆侍衛隊), “Team Earth & Environment” (地環隊), “Institutum Iurisprudentiae Team” (法律所隊), “Team ‘Atom’ Bomb” (原子彈隊), “Team ‘Black’ Society” (黑社會隊), “Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics Team” (天文所隊), “Team Badass & Ah-kuan” (煞氣a阿寬隊), and “Team ‘I am a Genomics Research Center hot guy, right?’” (我是基因體帥哥對不隊). Each team really put on their thinking caps and got their creative juices flowing for their team names.

Many colleagues also brought their family to the softball game. The children—little munchkins players—running around the field made the event even more enjoyable. Researchers who are usually buried in their work had a chance to relax and enjoy a fun game with their family.

These were all friendly matches played entirely for fun and enjoyment; no scores were kept. Winning or not was beside the point. This event was held to bring colleagues out of their laboratory and offices to experience the joy of playing sports—breaking a sweat and stretching out their limbs while bonding with fellow peers and creating fond memories through a fun game of ball. Doing research requires much concentration and can be very brain-intensive, tiring, and energy sapping. Exercise can help our colleagues continue to be young at heart and maintain a youthful spirit and energy.

For those colleagues who missed out on the fun this time around, fret not. Stay tuned for we will be bringing you many more fun games and opportunities for creative teams to showcase their athletic prowess and team spirit. Working as a team, Academia Sinica will surely hit many more home runs together—both in softball and in research endeavors.