Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Silver Anniversary

It was 25 years ago today that I attended my first Major League game.

I remember it well. Jann, my dateIt was a blustery Chicago day, and the ivy in Wrigley Field had not yet leafed out. I went with my friend Jann, who worked at Playboy (which had its own set of fringe benefits.) We sat in the upper deck on the first base side. I was thrilled! I remember being impressed that I could hear the ball pop in the catcher's mitt even from our lofty perch.

At some point, a foul ball came our way. I thought I was going to catch it, but it went over my head. I was First Gamelucky enough to be sitting on the aisle. I turned around to see where it went, and a woman two rows up was yelling, "Get it! Get it! Get it!" She was the only one who saw it, but she couldn't reach it. All of a sudden, the ball rolled out from the seats, and I dove up the aisle two rows, smothering the ball with the down mittens I was wearing on both hands. I sat back in my seat, and I was trembling. I couldn't even look at the ball for several minutes. I remember Jann saying, "I can't believe you got a ball!" and I just stared straight ahead, trying to grasp the surreal moment.

Foul ball from first gameSome people go to MLB games their entire lives and never come close to getting a foul ball. I got one on my first game. I took it as a sign.

The Pirates (in yellow, from head to toe) beat the Cubbies, 9-2. Future Hall of Famer Willie Stargell hit a home run. We went to El Jardin for Mexican food afterwards. A good day, in and of itself. It turned out to be a rather momentous day in the grand scheme o' things.

So what am I doing to celebrate? I'm going to a baseball game, of course!

©2005 Douglas T. Dinsmoor


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