This is me at the Yankees game Monday night.
Hmm. "NOT too shabby!" is prolly what you're thinking, right? Front row, just down the line from third base, almost run into in a Damon/Jeter collision, two foul balls almost scooped up. We call this lil section of town "The Legends Suite," something you scrawny, poor folks probably have seen and heard about on your black and white television "sets." Op and I had tickets to go to the game anyway, but at the last minute got the call from Randy (name changed to protect the wildly successful), and he had two extra tickets in the Legends Club section.
Op and I, being our usual cool "whatevs" selves, were running late and missed the first 3 innings of the game, but the Yankees had thoughtfully stalled for us by taking 31 minutes to score 8 runs in the bottom of the third, waiting for us to show up.
"They here yet?"
"Don't see 'em."
"Okay...get another hit then. Should be soon."
We finally get there and get directed to a part of the Stadium I didn't know existed, The Valley of Vale and Majesty, where we meet up with Randy who takes us through some hallway and down some stairs into what opens up into a huge space I can only describe by saying "how I'd imagine what the cafeteria/dining room of the Justice League looks like."
Now, let's get something straight - if I'm going to the ballpark, I'm a pig in shit. I don't care if I'm sitting 3 miles up in the last seat before clouds start, I'm happy as a clam and don't want the game to end. So as thrilled as I was sitting so close to the action, I don't want anyone thinking that was the reason I went.
Legends Club? FREE FOOD. ALL YOU CAN FUCKING EAT.
I don't just mean burgers and dogs either - you walk in the room and it's like a goddam wedding reception: dudes set up at stations with carving knives, waiting for you to point at what you want and they don't stop piling the shit on til you tell them too. Truffle rolls, lobster salad, sushi, tuna nicoise salad, penne with blue claw crab sauce, summer pancetta and heirloom tomato sandwiches, whatever you fucking want, it's amazing. I almost fell to me knees in tears.
Of course, I got the burgers and dogs. All told I had seven sliders, four hot dogs, a pile of roasted potatoes, a bag of popcorn, a piece of pizza, a BIG cheeseburger, and an ice cream sandwich. NOT ALL AT ONCE asshole, over six innings. Camon. Of course I didn't know that if you use the good China you're supposed to eat inside at a table with the fancy linen; somehow I made it out to my seat with the good stuff without anybody noticing, and on my second trip everyone working there seemed baffled with what I needed to do with the plate. 90 billion fans this summer, and I'm the first one to use the good stuff out in the stands? Really? I'm the first classy fan there all year?
Unbelievable. Place was unbelievable.
Another thing I realized sitting so close to the field is how bright everything really is under the lights. I mean the lights, these fucking lights could generate enough energy to move Kirstie Alley a quarter-inch. Well. Almost. They're lights, not magic. And the balls themselves - I'm blind as a bat and yet I could see the ball perfectly, even at 90mph. I mean the fucking thing is WHITE. I could see the ball, which is probably used for one pitch and then sent away upstate to the MLB ball cemetary farm, off the bat right away - which is a big difference from my playing days in high school, when the "lights" sucked and we probably went a whole season using the same ball, covered in dirt.
My first ever varsity game, I started in center field...looking back I don't know why I would've been in center instead of left....maybe our regular cf got raped by a bear on the way to the game? Mmmmmm....sexy....ANYways, like I said, I'm blind as a bat which, along with the dim lighting as dusk set in and a ball covered in dirt and colored a perfectly dull beige, meant that I couldn't see the ball off the bat. Which is not a great thing when you're, you know...playing baseball. Or, to be honest, walking or standing anywhere near the ballfield. I could usually pick it up a second later, along with seeing where everybody else was looking at. I know, real Willie Mays stuff. - fucking baseball, and I gotta be Sherlock fucking Holmes out there. THANKS cones and rods! Anyway, it's late in the game - dusk at it's worst, and I can barely see the batter from center field, much less a goddam ball going 150mph off a bat. All of a sudden I hear a PING!! (aluminum bats, people) and this goes through my head:
"well, THAT was fucking crushed...okay, where's it going...what's everybody looking at.........why's everybody looking at me?" and then THOOOOMP!!!.....I hear the ball land like a fucking meteorite about 3 feet to my right. Ohoh.
Let me tell you people something: it's a looooooooooooooong walk to the dugout from 350 feet away. In the middle of an inning. As your replacement is spryly skipping past you. It's easy to be embarrassed as a 15 year old, so you can imagine how awesome this felt in front of a full set of bleachers. My coach said I wasn't going in again until I got glasses, which I did by the next game.
But Monday night? Could see every fucking stitch. Unreal.
Thanks Op and Randy! :)
ps - we made it onto tv!!
I like how even though it's a baseball game and presumably 50,000 people are looking at a single person, each of us is looking in a different direction.
Randy: "2-strike hitter, he better be careful here."
Op: "I wonder if the kids' college tuition will include deferred tax credits over an interim of 3 years?"