‎"...a little 'trouty', but quite good" ~ Eve Kendall, North By Northwest

Saturday, August 4, 2007

baseball - live and in person

Today was neither pink nor sparkly. But I did manage to turn it around at the last minute. After spending the day watching the kids wilt inside while we tried to catch up on the house (I cleaned out the utensil drawer in my kitchen - huzzah!), I decided to take them to the playground for a picnic dinner.

When we got to the playground, which is next to the baseball field, we noticed baseball players. In uniform. And I thought, oh goody, we can watch them practice. It will be almost like we got our pathetic selves to a game for the first time since ever. And then I looked past the players and noticed lots of blankets and chairs dotting the hillside.

The thing about Cape Cod Baseball League games is that.... I'm not sure what the thing is. But lots of people go, which may be the thing. So during the day everyone who likes baseball comes by the park and marks their territory with a blanket. If you show up at game time without having first secured a spot, you're hosed. And really, you can't just show up at game time, because there's no parking by then.

And it occurred to me that all of my arguments for usually not wanting to go were already settled. We were already parked, we had not fought with traffic, we had a blanket to put out and we had plenty of food.

So we marked some territory of our own and returned to the safety of the playground while the hoards amassed and the team practiced. I don't understand why they practice just before a game. It is hot. They must be pooped. This is why I am not a baseball player. I don't like being hot and pooped and unable to take a shower before lots of people come to see me.

When the time came, we wandered over and found our blanket. I know just enough about baseball to be an embarrassment. Lucy kept asking me questions and although I answered them as best I could, I still drew disgusted looks from the teenagers in front of us. Finally, a player from the other team struck out swinging and when Lucy asked me what all the cheering was about I explained that he was high sticking. The teenagers then found their headphones and tuned me out entirely.

Maybe it's because I was there with two small children in whose continued physical intactness I am invested, but holy moley there were a lot of foul balls. I have never paid such close attention to a game. And I will never never never again park within 5 miles of the field on game night. I was sure I'd come back to the car to find a smashed sunroof. And trampling footprints of foul-ball-chasing kids going through from one door (swinging on its hinges) to the other.

I even came away with a favorite player. He is #23 and he may or may not be Chase D'Arnaud. He is my favorite player because he was so gracious with a bunch of kids who wanted his autograph. I am not sure what else to judge a baseball player on. Commercials? I say he may or may not be Chase D'Arnaud because when I looked up the roster online it didn't link and there was mention of being signed. Will the real #23 please stand up?

Speaking of being signed, there's a place at the ball park just for MLB scouts. I don't know what an MLB scout is but I bet it's one up from Eagle Scouts. At least. They get to sit way up front, without staking claim with an old blanket. It kind of made me want to hang around in case there was something I could be scouted for. Obviously, I am a brilliant sports writer, so maybe they could sign me for that.

By the end of the game Lucy and Studley had both rushed the fence and were cheering wildly. They loved it so much they even made friends with the mascot.

I could kind of see why they were having such a good time. I might have to actually like baseball.

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