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It’s been 35 years since Mark “The Bird” Fidrych took the mound for the Detroit Tigers, but at long last another free spirited pitcher is coming to Motown. As part of the trade that sent David Price to the Toronto Blue Jays, the Tigers received philosopher-photographer-surfer-skater-pitcher Daniel Norris.

''I love the outdoors and surfing and photography and all that good stuff. But I don't necessarily daydream about that stuff; I daydream about baseball. I can't stop thinking about it, actually.''

— Detroit Tigers pitcher Daniel Norris


As we documented before the season began, Norris loves the adventure that can be found following the open road in his Volkwwagen Westphalia camper. Once baseball season ends, expect to see plenty of Instagram updates from the road.


While some may aspire to become the philosopher kings of Plato’s Utopian Kallipolis, Norris is quite satisfied as a philospher photographer capturing the street life found in the cities he visits.

How many times have you met a person & immediately forgotten their name? I could possibly be the worlds worst at that. However, if you tell me a story I’ll listen with intent & bottle that in my memories for as long as I desire. I’m a huge fan of story telling. Whether I’m telling it or I’m listening. Putting yourself in that setting and letting my imagination take its course. – this man, his name I forgot the second he uttered it, told me a story about flying his drone around Boston & having a birds eye view of everything going on. He said the perspective from the drone changed the way he viewed life on his two feet. With his own two eyes. At first, it made little sense to me. But after I left & thought about the conversation I started to understand what he was saying. Let me know what you think about that & if you’d choose a birds eye view or your own. I’m curious.

2nd Cup. –In my humble opinion, both should overflow. 1 with coffee to keep him warm & at ease. The other with coins & crumpled bills to give this man opportunity. Opportunity to have a choice. He can use the money to buy grub to nourish his body. Or he could use the money to buy drugs & alcohol to potentially harm his body. – I know what you’re thinking. Why don’t you just buy him food & make that decision for him? I’ve done that before & all was well. However, here’s what im getting at. Life is all about the little victories of being correct about something or confirmation on making the right choice. Setting this man up for a simple victory of choosing grub over booze could be the difference in the pep in his step or the smile on his face. That matters. For some reason I believed in him. Maybe because I had no reason not to. – I followed him around like a fly on the wall after I dispensed my offer in his 2nd cup…. He bought a couple apples and a granola bar from a local market. So cheers.

This guy was hands down the happiest homeless person I’ve ever met. There he was sitting on the corner as I rode by on a skateboard. He caught my eye. As I got closer he was ear to ear with a hearty grin. He said to me, “sweet board, dude!” & gave me a Shaka with a wiggle. I laughed & opened conversation. I had nothing on me but my camera so I snapped a few shots then asked him to stay put while I cruised back to the clubhouse to grab something to help him out. I came back with some money & Peter Pan Peanut butter crackers. 😂 He was so stoked on the crackers. Such a gentle hearted man deserved way more than some crackers & a few bills but knowing he appreciated the gesture made my day. I think more happiness awaits this fella.

Homeless & Happy. – She asked me to take her photo. So I did.


Like any authentic free spirit, Norris has a penchant for skateboarding, surfing and sketching…

… although he still struggles with rendering the human hand (see above). His sister Melanie, however, has no trouble painting hands or any other part of the human anatomy.