Take Me Out to the Ballgame

October 3, 2012 at 4:29 am Leave a comment

What is it about a baseball game that just takes you back? This past weekend, my parents treated all the ‘kids’ to a day at the ballpark. We were all raised on the Oakland A’s (the Giants – boo, hiss, lol) and so caught one of the final games of the regular season. It turned out that we got a really exciting game with the A’s coming back in the bottom of the 9th on a three run homer to tie up the game and then win it in the 10th with another homer. Everyone was jumping around, cheering, high-fiving and hugging. And that was among complete strangers! It was such a fun day.

Anyway, despite the complaints that the Oakland Coliseum is an old relic and the A’s desperately need a new home, I have so many memories attending games at this park throughout my childhood and into my adult years. Every time I come to a game, it’s so easy to go back.

Crazy George – This guy would get up on the dugout and jump around with a tambourine and rouse the crowd between plays. I wonder what happened to that guy?

The Exposed Pipes in the Bathroom – Ok, so this is the part where you think I’m totally weird. When I was a kid, I had this fascination/terror of certain ceilings. I’m not kidding! I was super scared of ceilings that had the popcorn/asbestos covering over exposed masonry. I guess considering what they figured out about asbestos later, I had a right to be scared! Anyway, I don’t know why, but they scared me and I HATED going in buildings with ceilings like that (the local roller rink,  the Flower Building and the racetrack grandstand at our county fairgrounds are the three I remember). The other ceilings I hated were the ones with exposed pipes like they have at the Coliseum. I would go in to use the bathrooms and STARE at those pipes, daring them to show their true monster form and come get me, the poor little kid on the toilet. Mom thinks it goes back to an earthquake experience I had as a kid. When the water went through the pipes, they would wiggle and so she thinks I was thinking it was another earthquake.

The Wave – I loved it when this would get started in one section and then suddenly spread throughout the stadium. I would get all excited for when it would hit our section and it was time to rise in unison, hands up to the sky with a loud shout. Plus, it just looked so cool. No one does the Wave much any more. They actually tried to get it going at the game this past weekend, but it never got beyond the first section. C’mon guys, we can do better than that!

All the Crazy People in the Bleacher Seats – Beyond the outfield were the bleacher seats and they could always be counted on for a ton of noise through either horns, chanting or stomping on the ground. They always looked like they were having a great time.

The Oakland Hills – This was one memory that I really miss. Back in the day before they built that monstrosity for the Raiders (don’t even get me started), you could sit there in the main stadium and watch the game with a great backdrop of the Oakland Hills. They always had the bank planted with grass and flowers in A’s colors and flags flying with the years of championship wins. Now, we stare out at this ugly, cement wall filled with empty seats. If the Raiders leave, I say tear that thing down!

Dot Racing – When they did Dot Racing at this game, mom and I were commenting on how it’s kinda lost it’s appeal with the new, fancy, video game-esque layout. Original Dot Racing didn’t have this 3D track with sweeping air shots and fancy camera angles. Nope, it was just three dots – red, white and blue going around and around on a track shown from bird’s eye view. It was super kitschy, but I think it had appeal in it’s kitsch. People really got into it. Go Blue!

Celebrate by Kool and the Gang – This is one memory that is still going. The A’s game was pretty much the only place I would hear this song when I was growing up as I didn’t listen to the radio all that much. I thought it was actually written FOR the A’s as their theme song! I operated under this assumption for a very long time (until last year, just kidding). Even now, whenever I hear that song, I am immediately in the Oakland Coliseum on a summer day. Dad wishes they would get another song, lol! And yep, they played it on Saturday when they won.

So for me, going to an A’s game is not just a chance to watch the team I grew up with play ball, it’s quite a trip down memory lane. If I ever have kids, I intend to take them to the ballpark too. And I will make sure the Ceiling Pipe Monsters don’t get them and then we shall dance to ‘Celebrate’.

 

 

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Entry filed under: Other Life Outside Kimchi Kawaii. Tags: , , , , , , .

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