Sunday, April 14, 2013

L-7 Weenie

This is the first time I've ever written a blog on my phone, and it feels really awkward. But I'm sitting in the jury waiting room at the LA County Courthouse with nothing but an awesome book ("Dear Rick, Dear Teri" by the fabulous Teri Brown ((read it now, I say!))) and the entire Internet to entertain me. Sadly the public wifi blocked all the really *fun* websites. But Teri's book has inspired me to blog, and blog I shall!

So frickin' proud of my girl Teri!

Keeping with the spirit of my New Years resolution of awesomeness, let me tell you a little bit about baseball. "Including baseball and awesomeness in the same sentence, are you batty Child? Baseball is boring and long and stupid. America's pastime my foot!" You guys, it turns baseball is friggin' sweet! Who knew? (Still not as good as my first love, hockey, since there are far less fights and even fewer Canadians). But I do believe the LA Dodgers have found themselves a brand new fan.

This is a baseball with a Los Angeles logo on it. Get it?

"But Hutch, why the Dodgers? You're from Northern California. You are contractually obligated to like the Giants. Or at least the A's." The Bay Area is not Northern California. Ok, yes geographically it is in the northern part of the state. But it's doing it's own thing over there being pompous and expensive and douchey. (Sorry Bay Area peeps, but you know it's true!) I've lived in LA almost four years now, and I'm so much more at home here than I ever was up North.


I'm also picking the Dodgers as my new loves because I'm highly susceptible to the power of suggestion. I know I always say I love the Ducks because of Disney, but in reality it's because my favorite professor at UCI took my friend and me to a game at the Ponda in 2009 and really introduced me to the sport. Her passion for the Ducks was contagious. As is the case for the Fella who worked at Dodger Stadium for three summers in high school. It's hard not to get caught up in the fervor of die hard, lifelong fans.

"You bob for apples in the toilet. AND YOU LIKE IT!"

I managed to get out early from work last Wednesday and we headed down the backstreets of LA to the less crowded entrance of the ballpark. Being too cheap to pay the snack shack prices for Dodger peanuts, we smuggled in our own huge bag. But I just had to complete my inaugural baseball experience with a beer and a hot dog (even though I like neither I those things usually. I'm nothing if not ceremonial.) Sixteen bucks later, I had a tankard of Blue Moon and a genuine Dodger Dog. I could hear Yeah Yeah and Squints echoing in my ears, calling me an L-7 weenie. From then on couldn't stop quoting the Sandlot (my third favorite movie of all time). Beer and hot dogs have never tasted so good though.

Disgusting. (Those aren't my feet by the way. I totally stole this photo.)

We found our seats in the second to nosebleed section and settled in. I was shocked to discover that people just drop their peanut shells on the ground for the staff to clean up later. Savages! I had consumed maybe a quarter of my beer by this point so naturally I was pretty toasted. I switched from quoting the insults of the Great Hambino to singing "Savages, Savages" from Disney's Pocahontas. Because that's what you do when faced with such rampant littering. (Mormons don't litter. Not even Former Mormons.)

You know you want to start singing now too. Give in.

As the sun was starting to set, a castoff from the Voice sang the National Anthem. And even though he Mariah'd the crap out of it (which never fails to make me think of how much my music teacher mother hates when people do that and how it's technically illegal to alter the National Anthem), I still got tears in my eyes. Because I'm a boob. (Which is totally something my mom also says. Dear lord, it's happening already...)

Without commercials, the game went by really quickly. I was shocked at how exciting it was and how much I really got into it. I was also surprised at how often the players hit foul balls. (Tee hee balls.) In movies it seems like this is a rare and dramatic occurrence. In real life, they seem to hit foul balls (tee hee) all the friggin' time! Apparently hitting a small ball hurled at top speeds with a thin wooden bat is really difficult? Huh.

Aww, Luis Cruz, you are just too adorable. Was that you I toured that one time?
On a related note, I swear that I toured Luis Cruz at my property a few weeks ago. I know it's a fairly common name for Los Angeles, but that guy was the same height, build, face shape and age. I even texted my colleague who had also assisted him to see if she remembered him mentioning anything about being a Dodger. But she didn't. That would be sweet, even though he didn't end up renting with us. Now I feel like a racist though... Sidebar, Luis Cruz has his own little, well cheer I guess is how you would describe it. When he goes up to bat, everyone starts yelling "CRUUUUUUUUUZZZZ" in a really deep voice. To me, it sounded like they were booing him and I was like, hey that's not cool. Mormons are also nothing if not sportsmanlike. But I guess it's a good thing. Sports confuse me sometimes.

I don't understand. But I do love it.
Shortly after tweeting about my Blue Moon-fueld one-woman Disney cabaret, my dear francophile amie Amanda texted me: "Are you at the game right now too??" Small frickin' world! Running into my old UCI/Bordeaux chum (who coincidentally happened to be the same friend that went with me to that first hockey game back in '09) in the middle of a crowded stadium at my first baseball game! (Also coincidentally the same friend I happened to run into at a hostel/campground outside of Venice, Italy completely out of the blue.) So I met up with her after the game in front of the giant statue of a macaroni noodle. Like you do.

I'm weirdly turned on by this.
Back to baseball though. It's a hell of a sport. I also have much more respect for the game after hearing about the brawl between the San Diego Padres and the Dodgers. Now that's more like it! (I'm shockingly bloodthirsty. I think I was a gladiator in another life.) I'm determined to see a grudge match just in case someone starts throwing punches in addition to curve balls (tee hee, balls). It's also kind of sweet that everyone stands and sings "Take Me Out to the Ball Game," in the Seventh Inning Stretch. Like I said, I dig ceremony. I also dig the fact that the elderly organ player is a big fan of old musicals and that these big tough baseball fans probably didn't realize that they were singing along to showtunes from "Guys and Dolls" and "South Pacific." True Story.

I should probably also mention that we lost. Because I'm bad luck. But I won't let that stop me from going back to the ball park!