At the old ball game
We bought some tickets to the Oakland A’s last year at the Ruth Bancroft Garden gala, and today was the day. For some odd reason, there were 5 tickets. We took Dick and Joyce Hart, noted A’s fans, to explain the game to me. Gail was raised on minor league ball in Fresno and Visalia and understands these things. I sold the fifth ticket to a scalper just outside the gates, and sinfully enjoyed the schadenfreude of noting that he didn’t succeed in reselling it–the seat stayed empty throughout the game.
The game was a sellout, and I found that there must be some kind of parking lot etiquette that I’m unaware of. People get there hours ahead of game time to tailgate, and they take up quite a few parking spaces to set up their barbecues. Come game time, and the parking lot is filling up. Do they vacate these additional spaces? No. Is it proper to ask them to let you park? How many parking spaces are wasted by these beer swilling yobbos and their great squalling hordes of green and yellow clad rug rats?
We had a great time. The biggest booster of the team was sitting right behind us:
O.co stadium is pretty old and not as interesting as the few other parks I’ve been to. The jumbotron screens just aren’t very jumbo, and the one over right field is in full sun at the start of the game, making it washed out and dull. The scoreboards are old-fashioned dot matrix screens, with so many of the dots burned out or broken they are hard to read. If you don’t know anything about baseball, you notice things like this.
Baseball is a family game–the stadium was loaded with kids like the ones pictured above. I loved it.
Sometimes, you get lucky with pictures.
The white streak in front of the bat is the ball taking off for deep center.
The A’s scored two runs to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth, then scored again to win the tenth. The crowd cheered, Gail cheered, I cheered. The couple sitting next to us with the score sheets and the fielders mitt cheered. This guy was really, really happy:
It was fireworks night at the stadium, so almost nobody left after the game–except us. We were out of there and on our way to dinner, having chosen upscale chi-chi Japanese over hot dogs and CrackerJacks. Call me a Philistine, but a Philistine with tender taste buds.