as part of our fourth of july festivities, we wanted to take bebe to her first baseball game. luckily, mems and teed live in the town where baseball was invented, and their team, the Colonials, were playing on the fourth of july with fireworks after the game! bebe was pretty excited, although i'm not sure she knew exactly what she was excited for.
loaded into the car with her trusty sidekick, we headed out to historic Waconah Park, home of the Pittsfield Colonials!
waiting at the gate for the rest of our posse to arrive.
it was a hot, hot day. it wasn't as humid as it had been, but there were no clouds in the sky for cover, and we would be sitting right out in the open. this had all the makings of an early exit for bebe, and i was worried we wouldn't get to stay long.
we got there pretty early and found our seats. well, first we found someone else's seats, but when those people came we moved down a row into our actual seats. bebe didn't care where we were sitting (along the first base line, fyi), as long as she could see this guy:
she kept her cap down for shade and her eyes peeled for sightings of the baseball headed man.
aunt marge, mems, and mommy were enlisted to help spot him.
mems had developed her own infatuation with the mascot, so we didn't have to ask her twice.
there he goes! by the umpires!
we were originally sitting behind this pesky "safety" net. when we moved further down the baseline, there was no dumb net to ruin my shots, or block balls and debris from hitting us in the face. cool!
"over here! mr. baseball head! hey!"
the game was sold out, due partly to the fact that there were fireworks after the game, and partly to the fact that we were playing the new jersey something-or-others and there are lots of new york state tourists in town for the summer.
good thing that's a mets cap. these days boston fans will tolerate the mets as the lesser of two bags of assholes. but only by a little bit. don't push your luck, new york. that's all i'm saying.
once the game started, we were captivated. actually, it felt a lot like the movie Major League. unfortunately for lots of these players, this is the closest they'll get to playing pro ball. some of it is skill, some of it is size, and some of it is just the way it is. put a tune behind that and hum it.
with the bleachers facing west, this was our view for lots of the game. we were slowly getting roasted and the sun could not set fast enough.
bebe had to borrow mommy's sun glasses at one point.
we were in the second row, so we were really close to the visiting team's on deck circle. some of these guys were big, but were still smaller than the pros. it was like having an entire team of pedroias, minus the high level of skill, heart, and athleticism. don't sing that one.
swinging for the fences. we saw a lot of that.
this guy didn't see much action. most of the balls went deep into the outfield.
pittsfield fell behind early, but rallied. well, i don't know if you would call scoring seventeen runs a rally, but they did come from behind. a pitcher's duel, it was not.
dude, strike out ANYBODY.
our country tis of thee.
more sun. what is this, the longest day of the year?
heyyyyyyy batter batter batter batter batter!
jeeze, not so hard!
a little drama keeps things interesting. this guy swallowed his gum and had to be helped from the field. just kidding, he stayed in the game.
eventually the sun got to be too much and the umpires called a "sun delay," which i hear is a typical waconah park occurrence. our coach is a little young, but she doesn't take any shit. during this meeting on the mound she cursed loud enough for us to hear her in the stands, spit on one of her own players, and grabbed her crotch, all before her mom came out and made her go back to the dugout to cool off.
during the delay, we were tortured by this group of theatre terrorists. when the thing you don't like about the theatre is, well, theatrics, this type of thing can be a bit much.
most people headed for the food lines.
the second the sun got to the trees we could feel the temp drop. it was going to be a nice night for fireworks. but with a sun delay, and a game played out like the home run derby, we weren't sure we were going to be able to stay awake. at this rate, they'd be firing off the fireworks at about three a.m.
and speaking of groupies, during the sun delay, who should come waltzing up to bebe but ol' baseball head himself, Captain Colonial! bebe, who is pretty stranger-phobic, practically demanded a high five (and got one)!
aunt marge can't freaking believe it!
"do you think i'll ever see him again?"
oh, i think perhaps.
the shadows grew long
...as the sun dipped below the tree line. let's get back to the game.
"wood bats, aluminum bats... i'll tell you what- back when i played baseball, we used old bones. that's right. you hoped for good genes and waited for one of your great grand parents or grand parents to pass on. then, well, you took a thigh bone and..."
"yep. they don't play the game like they used to. i won't tell you what we used to use for balls. t'was messy, by god."
"sun delays suck. where are the fireworks?"
it grew dusky and the lights came on. still the third inning. still up by twelve.
...is for lovers.
bebe was a total champ through all of this. i don't know many near two year-olds that would sit mostly still without turning into whiney brats after an hour. the eleven year old behind us was more of a pest than bebe was.
in the end, the massive run scoring, coupled with the sun delay, was too much for beebs. as her bed time drew closer, it came time for her to head home. mems, teed, mommy, and bebe all took off, leaving uncle ben, me , and marge, along with our friends dr. steve and his wife mary to stay and watch the fireworks.
final at bat for our home town heroes.
hey, look at these guys!
they let people go down onto the infield to watch the fireworks.
and so on.
by the end of the show, there was a gigantic smoke barrier that slowly engulfed the trees of the outfield and headed straight for us.
afterward, the parking lot was one big finnish disco: lots of smoke and bright lights, with people haplessly bumping into one another in an attempt to find a bathroom or a way out.
the final score was 17-4, pittsfield. go Colonials! woo hoo!