I lived in the Arizona desert for over 10 years not having allegiance to any baseball team. I quickly hooked on the Diamondbacks, mostly for the fact that I got a bunch of free tickets over the next 10 years (golf business perk). They won the world Championship in 2001. I started my fandom in 2002. Bandwagon jumper? Some would say yes but for the next several years, to this date, they have been an awful organization. I’ve often been quoted as saying ,”they are not interested in winning.” “The best developmental farm team in MLB.” “Terrible management.” “Hard to root for.” Over time I’ve learned what it’s like to be a Cubs fan. A few years ago, my now wife and I packed our stuff and came to the Bay Area. There are two teams here that greatly differ from the AZ franchise. The one that caught my eye was in Orange and Black. Orange being my favorite color and several of the players on the team being easy to identify with, I’ve spent the last few years thinking about joining the hoards of Giants fans roaming the city streets of SF. At the end of last season I declared myself a free agent fan, “I’m done Dbacks, I’m just done…” I’ve tormented myself over this decision. That’s a long term relationship and like many of the past it hurts and could take a lot of time to get over. I thought I was to the end of the break up tunnel and then last night happened.
We received some tickets from a great friend in Arizona. Being free, we quickly summoned Aunt Rachel to watch the little scrat while we went to the game. I do love the ballpark. I really would rather have a dog and a beer at the ball park, than a fancy sit down at a five star restaurant. Not really knowing the confines of AT&T yet, we climbed to our section. We climbed and climbed and climbed. I’m even a little sore this morning. Being spoiled by many country club members in the past, I don’t think I’ve ever sat this high. Our seats were in the very top row. It is actually a spectacular view, all be it very cold. We could see the majesty of the Golden Gate bridge as fog slowly wisped around it’s lights. The field looked like heaven. They built it and we showed up, proving the “field of dreams” theory. At the top, you are very near the stadium lights and what flies around these lights quickly became a small distraction from the events on the field of play. I’ve never actually seen moths this big. They looked life small drones being controlled by the minds of 2 year olds. They darted back and forth, in and out of the light with no apparent plan, kind of a rhythmic nonsensical aerial display with ADHD attached. And then it happened. There was a nice couple in front of us. They had with them a young boy, probably 3ish, possible attending his first game. I really can’t wait to share the ballpark experience with my daughter. So I have an “aaaahhhhh” moment and my moment is shattered. Through my eyeline flew a moth-copter and landed. It touched down in the back of the mother’s hair in front of me. I figured it would relaunch at any moment but no. It dug in for the long haul or so it thought. It was the 3rd inning when moth-a-sauras decended. A nice person, someone with a good social understanding of people might have tapped her on the shoulder and said, “maam, you have a bug in your hair.” Apparently I am not it. The bug gained our undivided attention. We watched the game but never took our eyes off it. It prompted my wife to have me check her hair every three minutes or so. It started getting really cold in the altitude so we decided to descend to a bar in the 7th inning and watch the rest of the game. Just before we were going to rise an event happened. I would dream about it later in the night. An event that cannot be ignored. The child was playing on mother’s lap and lunged forward at her. Her head snapped backwards. With the accuracy of a 15 century Japanese sword maker striking an anvil and forming a perfect katana blade, the ladies head struck my knee. When I was a kid we used to step on “boxelder” bugs and they would make this popping sound as their entrails left their shell. Magnify that and I was transported and disgusted. Bug guts on my knee and her head. The carcass fell off and the event was over. The lady never even knew. “Did that really happen?” my wife whispered. Yes, unfortunately it did. I refuse to ignore the implications of the sign though. Another odd occurrence happened that night. The Dbacks kicked ass. The bats were alive. Josh Collementer went 8 scoreless innings. They put a beat down on the Giants in SF. I told you I was still watching. Maybe I was too harsh on this team. Maybe I should give them a second chance. Tony LaRussa wouldn’t have joined the front office unless there was something here right? Wait a minute, is the catcher’s first name really “Tuffy?” Maybe I can identity with this team. Afterall , a bug did give it’s life to show me a sign….. Go Diamondbacks!!! I’m back and I’m sorry, it wasn’t you, it was me.