Take Me Out To The Ball Game

Maxine Stone
Maxine Stone

The first thing you need to know about watching baseball is that you have to have the right attitude. Not all games are as eventful as the recent World Series.

Ahhh, baseball. What a wonderful sport. You get to sit in the sun (if you’re lucky) and enjoy a day of excitement. You get to watch the players stand in the field, adjusting their jocks, waiting for a ball to come their way. You see guys spitting tobacco juice every 10 seconds. If you find it disgusting, just don’t look. The batter stands, watching for a fast ball, but gets a curve ball. He hits a grounder. The shortstop catches it. The umpire yells, “Yer out.”

Next, the pitcher scratches his head and spits on his hand (I thought that wasn’t allowed) and winds up—the crowd is silent in anticipation. Will he pitch a third strike or will the batter hit it into the bleachers? I think, Who cares? The man with the franks is coming around and I’m going to get a hot dog with all the trimmings along with a coke. Out of the corner of my eye, I see the batter has hit a ball to second base. I’m getting interested—and conflicted. Should I call the vendor over or wait to see whether they throw him out at first?

My stomach is rumbling; my throat is parched from the sunshine. I think I can take my eyes off the action for a few minutes. I call for my hot dog, whistling through my teeth. My son taught me how to do this wonderful trick. Wouldn’t you know, the second I turn around, the next batter hit the ball right to the third baseman, who dropped the ball. What a jerk! Error—the batter at first is safe. I can’t see a thing—everyone is standing up and screaming.

After all the yelling comes to an end, I sit down. The star batter, walking with a swagger, comes up to bat. I guess the team manager in the field must be getting nervous.

I look around. I see boys with their dads spending a father-and-son day. Fans are dressed in T-shirts sporting their team’s logo—and I see baseball hats galore. Sloppy and lose is in. I’m out! Nobody told me I shouldn’t wear my latest designer outfit to the game. Oh, well. My boss gave me the ticket free—with the day off—a win-win situation.

The hot dog is delicious—nice and greasy. I think I will get another one. I look up at the sky. Clouds are rolling in. I can’t believe it. We are in for a rain storm. Thunder is growing in the distance. My perfect day is about to come to an end. I call over the vendor, buy another dog and get ready to leave my seat. My plan is to outrun the rain. Just as I stand up, I hear a roar. It’s not the thunder, it’s the crowd. The star batter has hit a home run and the game is tied. Should I stay and get wet? The crowd is hysterical.

Nah! I’m not that into baseball. I don’t want to spoil my new shoes. I decide to leave.

I’m the only one leaving. The rain is starting to come down. I figure that I’m getting wet anyway, so I may as well stay and see what happens. I sit down again. Excitement is building. There is tension in the air. So what if I ruin my hair, I can report the events of the day to my boss and be a hero. These ball players are really cute. I’m beginning to like this game.

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