I admit that I have never been much of a sports fan.
Don't get me wrong. I rock a good tailgate party with the best of 'em, and I'll happily tag along to any sporting event that you'd like to take me to -- but if left to my own devices, I'll rarely watch a game (I average about 1 game a year - the Superbowl ;).
Honestly, (and please don't think less of me for saying this!) I don't *really* even understand the rules of football, other than, as explained to me during a casual game in college "get the ball & run like hell to the other side of the field-- without getting tagged or tackled."
So I guess what I mean to say is that while I may not be a "pure sports fan" (for the sake of the sport itself) I have always appreciated & loved the social aspect :)
... And baseball games have always held a special place in my heart.
I'm not sure exactly what it is, but baseball games have always had a certain romance to them.
They evoke memories of sweet summer days, and the characteristic scent of peanuts + fried food + cotton candy bring back memories of hot August nights in my childhood.
When I set foot in a ballpark and something in my heart just sighs -- heavy with the sweet nostalgia of homecoming; set aflame to the beat of simpler times and classic Americana.
Last night Jon & I got the chance to go to a Columbus Clippers (Central Ohio's Minor League Baseball team) game with my company. And while we had a great time laughing with my co-workers (& Jon had a good time discussing video games with a pint-sized acquaintance --oh, I SO want boys someday ;) ... more than as a social event -- this was a fantastic date.
Sometimes the best part of being out in a crowd is 'being alone together', if you know what I mean. We munched hot dogs (dime-a-dog night) & sipped some of (I'm sure) the last 'Summer Shandy' of the year; we held hands and whispered & laughed together. We cheered & boo-ed and joked with the people I spend 25% of my week with--but don't often get to kick back with :)
And the weather couldn't have been better for us. When the game ended at 10, it was a crisp, clear night in the mid-60's. Perfection.
"The one constant through all the years has been baseball. America has rolled by like an army of steamrollers. It's been erased like a blackboard, rebuilt, and erased again. But baseball has marked the time. This field, this game, is a part of our past. It reminds us of all that once was good, and what could be again."
- James Earl Jones in Field of Dreams (1989)